Tram tracks cycling survey

Have your say on cycling alongside or across the tram tracks


Love Your Bike, the cycling advocacy campaign co-ordinated by Manchester Friends of the Earth, has launched a survey to gather the experiences of people who have cycled alongside, close to or across Metrolink tram tracks [1]

Women riding bicycles


In December 2014, Love Your Bike again raised concerns regarding the designs of Metrolink tram routes at road junctions such as Southmoor Road in Wythenshawe. [2]

In 2012, Sean Sutton (the British Cycling Head Coach at the time) described the new tram lines near to the Velodrome as ‘death traps‘. [3]

Love Your Bike is concerned that where cyclists have crashed or been injured when cycling close to/across Metrolink tracks they do not report the incident because they blame themselves for their lack of cycling experience or skill.

But Love Your Bike believes that many of these incidents may be caused by poor designs. In January 2015, Transport for London (TfL) announced a junction-by-junction safety review of the Croydon tram network following a Coroner’s report that criticised “confusing” signage and layout of cycle lanes at the junctions with the tram network and warned more cyclists could die unless action was taken. [4]

In February 2015, Love Your Bike received a response to a Freedom of Information Act request submitted to Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) asking for details of the number of people who had reported crashing on/near tram tracks.

Whilst, the number of reported incidents is still quite low, there has been a three-fold increase between 2013 to 2014 in both the number of incidents reported and the number of claims submitted for injuries and/or damages. [5]

Manchester Friends of the Earth Sustainable Transport Campaigner Graeme Sherriff said:  “We have launched the survey to ask the wider community to let us know their experiences of cycling across tram tracks in Greater Manchester.  If the design of Metrolink tracks, particularly at road intersections, puts cyclists at risk, we want to highlight this problem and work for improvements.”


1. Survey:  What is your experience of cycling across Metrolink tram tracks?  See

2.  Concerns with Metrolink tram routes: Statement to Manchester Cycle Forum.  See

3. Manchester Evening News. 19 November 2012. Olympic coach Shane Sutton, badly hurt in bike crash, says tram lines around Manchester Velodrome are ‘death trap’ for cyclists.

4. Croydon tram network to be reviewed in wake of coroner Selena Lynch’s warnings over death of cyclist Roger De Klerk.  See

5. Bicycle crashes and Metrolink : A Freedom of Information Act request and response. See

6. Love Your Bike is an award winning Manchester based campaign aiming to promote cycling and help make it an even more attractive, accessible and fun way to get around. Co-ordinated by Manchester Friends of the Earth, the campaign works in partnership with other like-minded organisations.



Alison x  (your 4Manchesterwomen Editor)


Photographs: Free Digital Photos




Vanishing for the Vote

The story of the 1911 census bought to life at The People’s History Museum


While I was aware that Manchester was home to the suffragette movement, with Emmeline Pankhurst (below) hailing from Moss Side. I didn’t know about the story behind the 1911 census.

That was, until I went to a talk by writer and historian Jill Liddington as part of Manchester Histories Festival at The People’s History Museum.

Only released in 2009, the census gives a fascinating insight into the lengths women went to, to make sure that you and I, our mothers and our grandmothers were able to vote.


Emmeline Pankhurst


The 1911 census was especially important for the Liberal government of the day as it was to provide them with data for ambitious welfare reforms. But with the government also forcibly feeding hunger-striking suffragettes in prison, militant suffragettes organised a census boycott.


Census night


“No Vote – No Census” was the chorus. Manchester as you can imagine was a hot bed of activity, with boycotts concentrated around Rusholme, Fallowfield and Worsley.

I love this photo, taken at around the same time, of Wilmslow Road in Rusholme (aka Curry Mile).


Wilmslow Road, Rusholme early 20th Century


On Census Night (2nd April 1911) around 300 Manchester women risked a hefty fine by hiding out in Dennison House (Dennison Road, Rusholme) which they’d hired for the occasion. This building now houses the Chinese Consulate!

While out in Worsley women cycled at midnight to Eccles and Swinton to distribute posters encouraging women to join the boycott.

Though the number that boycotted wasn’t huge, it was a big PR coupe.

I love the fact that these fabulous and brave Manchester women, who stood up for the things they felt were right played such a fundamental part in improving the rights of women around the world.

While today there are still far too many women in other countries who don’t have the right to vote, we’ve got a lot to thank those women for, who hid in a house in Rusholme on the 2nd April 1911!

If you want to learn more  you can find Jill Liddington’s book here -Vanishing for the Vote: Suffrage, Citizenship and the Battle for the Census.



Alison x  (your 4Manchester Women Editor)


Photographs: Wikipedia under Creative Commons, Rusholme & Victoria Park Archive





International Women’s Day 2014

A guide to what’s happening in Manchester


International Women's Day 2014


As the home of the Suffragette movement, Manchester is once again embracing with gusto International Women’s Day (IWD) – Saturday 8th March 2014.

This year the international theme is Inspiring Change.


What’s happening for IWD in Manchester?


Well firstly replace ‘day’ with ‘month’ as there is lots going on the run up to and after the big day.

To help you plan you celebration of feminine fabulousness, we thought a round up of what’s on might be useful. Please do leave a comment in the box below if we’ve missed anything out.

Early women's rights movementWhatever you do and where ever you do it, don’t forget to remember the brave and strong women that have gone before us.

Those who paved our way and opened the door. Without them we wouldn’t have the opportunities we have today.

Remember too those women in other countries who are oppressed, stifled, terrorised and don’t have the opportunity to reach their full potential. And remember the women in our own country and our own city who are struggling.

Have a look at the events below, get involved, see how you can help and continue the tradition of awesome Manchester Women!


Manchester City Council


Manchester City Council hosts the IWD Steering Group. This year the Steering Group has agreed a theme of Women as Peacemakers.

IWD Events


With the 100th anniversary of the start of the 1st World war, IWD 2014 is the perfect opportunity to celebrate the role that women have played and continue to play in conflict resolution and peace building.

As part of the IWD celebrations, Manchester City Council will host the 2nd Manchester International Women’s Day Awards on Friday 7th March 2014.



This event recognises unsung women who make an important contribution in the city and provides role models for Manchester’s women and girls.

For a comprehensive list of community events and guided walks compiled by Manchester City Council – click here



We are Warp and Weft – Stature Exhibition


24th February – 9th March 2014

Ground Floor, Manchester Town Hall, Albert Square.

Of the 640 listed statues in the UK, only 15% are of women and most of those are statues of monarchs or mythological characters.

Apart from Queen Victoria’s statue, Manchester’s municipal statues still only celebrate the achievement of historical men.

Eight women from Greater Manchester with diverse backgrounds and achievements have been chosen – all of whom deserve recognition.


Stature Flyer


Check out the crocheted masks on the ground floor of Manchester Town Hall and learn about some amazing local women.

For more information visit



Imperial War Museum North


IWM North, Trafford Wharf Road, Trafford Park, M17 1TZ

A Closer Look: International Women’s Day

1st – 31st March, 3.30pm Daily

Discover the personal stories of inspirational women in a 20 minute walk and talk around IWM North. Explore the roles of women during times of conflict and peace keeping, from the Women’s International League in the First World War, to peaceful protesters at Greenham Common.


GP Lewis photograph from IWM archive. Women, Industry and WWI


Nancy’s Land Army Adventure 

Every Sunday in March, 1pm

Meet Nancy and hear her tales of life in the Land Army in the Second World War. Learn about her experiences away from home and making new friends. In this interactive family friendly session visitors can choose what happens, and so each story telling session will be different.


Open Studio: International Women’s Day

Saturday 8th March, 11am – 12.30pm and 2 – 3.30pm

Sunday 9th March, 11am – 12.30pm and 2 – 3.30pm

For more information visit



Manchester Guided Walking Tours


Woman who made Manchester guided walk

Friday 7th March 1pm – 3.30pm

People’s History Museum, Left Bank, Spinningfields, M3 3ER

Hear the stories of Manchester women whose influence past and present has make the city great.


Girl Power – Manchester Style

Saturday 8th March, 11.30am

Meet at the Manchester Visitor Information Centre

Manchester women have not always conformed to societies ideal!


For more information visit



One Day After Peace – film screening and Q&A


Saturday 8th March, 7.30pm

Cross Street Chapel, Cross Street, M2 1NL

Manchester’s first event screening of the multi-award winning documentary One Day After Peace – followed by a Q&A with the film’s lead, Robi Damelin.


One Day After Peace

For more information visit



Wonder Women – Radical Manchester

wonder women radical manchester


The list of arts events cited as part of the month long Wonder Women – Radical Manchester 2014 celebration is comprehensive to say the least.

From gender swapping, time travelling Orlando at the Royal Exchange to Joana Vasconcelos’ Time Machine Exhibition at Manchester Art Gallery and Vanishing for the Vote at The People’s History Museum (where women refused to be recorded in the 1911 census) the offering is massive.

Creative Tourist have produced a really good overview of events on throughout the month. Hat’s off to them for some serious collating!

For more information visit



Three Minute Theatre


As usual 3MT – the little theatre on the ground floor of Afflecks Palace, will be celebrating women in theatre with a jam packed week of performances.

Pulse Productions Presents: Wednesday 5th – Thursday 6th March

Pulse Productions Presents New 3, 6 and 9 minute plays by female writers.



For Books’ Sake – ‘Women of Peace’: Saturday 8th March 1pm – 4pm

Women of Peace will feature local women using fiction and non-fiction readings to extol women’s often ignored role as peacemakers.

Women In Performance – Saturday 8th March, 7.30pm


A festival celebrating women in the discipline of performance art.

For more information visit


Manchester City Football Club


This year MCFC are sponsoring the Manchester International Women’s Day Awards at the Town Hall.

As part of this sponsorship, the Club are offering the chance for female footballers aged 16-18 to win a pair of tickets to attend the awards ceremony on Friday 7th March.

MCFC will also back a prize for ‘Women in Sport and Leisure’, which will be awarded to an individual who has excelled in the field of sports or sports promotion, community-based leisure or parks.

For more information visit


Forever Manchester


Forever Manchester will be holding an International Women’s Day Dinner and Networking Event on Wednesday 12th March at Olive Restaurant. For more information visit


Manchester Craft and Design Centre


Tessellate is an event designed for International Women’s Day. The community group ArtAnon will be presenting an exciting origami display created by the public, at Manchester Craft and Design Centre on Saturday 8th March, 6pm – 9pm.

For more information visit


Red Flag Walks


Find out more about Manchester’s campaigning past with historical Red Flag Walks as part of the month long Wonder Woman Festival.


Red Flag History Walks


Manchester First in the Fight. Votes for Women 1866-1928

Sunday 16th March, 11am – meet at Friends Meeting House, Mount Street


There is no such city as Manchester. Manchester in Fiction

Saturday 22 March, 11am – meet at Friends Meeting House, Mount Street


Radical Salford

Sunday 23 March, 11am – meet outside Black Lion pub


Radical Ashton-under-Lyne

Sunday 30 March, 11am – meet at Town Hall steps, Market Square.


For more information visit



What have we missed?


There will, without a shadow of a doubt be more events and celebrations going on in Manchester for International Women’s Day. If you’ve got an event you’d like to share, please leave a comment in the box below and tell us all about it.


I feel really lucky to be a woman in Manchester – March 8th 2014 is our time to celebrate!


Alison x  (your 4Manchester Women Editor)


Photographs: IWD, Manchester City Council, Warp & Weft, Alison Staples, One Day After Peace, Three Minute Theatre, Wonder Women – Radical Manchester, Red Flag Walks









Chinese Year of the Sea – Horse

Giant sea horse spotted in China Town!


There may have been 75,000 of you on the streets of Manchester yesterday, lining the route of the dragon parade for Chinese New Year. But how many of you spotted this rare beauty – seen just a couple of days before.


Giant Seahorse puppet


As China ushered in the Year of the Horse, Manchester Sea Life Centre got it’s greeting in early, parading a spectacular costume seahorse through Chinatown.

The point being that an estimated 150 million seahorses each year are used to make traditional Chinese medicines. The fear is that many species could be wiped out within 20 years. It’s hoped that China will remember seahorses too in this special Year of the Horse.


Giant Seahorse costume


The 45-foot Chinese carnival-style costume was worn by Sea Life staff and children from Barton Clough Primary School and Irlam and Cadishead College.

So let’s hear it for seahorses and hope that it’s a good year for them too!


Alison x  (your 4Manchester Women Editor)


Photographs: Sea Life Centre.



New NQ street artwork

Continuing the strong tradition of politically challenging Manchester women


When you go to a city like Barcelona, you can’t move for people photographing the fantastic street art around Las Ramblas.

But back home, you get consumed by daily life, making it all too easy to miss Manchester’s fantastic street art right under our noses. Take a turn around The Northern Quarter in particular and you’ll see some amazing works of art.


Meet the artist


The newest of which is by Manchester artist Sarah Lynn Mayhew, aka SLM art on Tib Street. It’s in support of  Edward Snowden the American CIA and NSA computer specialist who leaked details of several top-secret United States and British government mass surveillance programs to the press.


Edward Snowden Street Art



Sarah, an Award Winning RSA artist says:

” I was inspired to create this dramatic piece of street art to highlight the mass surveillance’s implications regarding human rights internationally, all under the banner of ‘war on terrorism’ yet the Government’s are violating our basic liberties and destroying privacy.

“I choose to paint Edward Snowden not only to show my support but to encourage the public to engage and become aware of where our country is being led at present. The Guardian has recently exposed files leaked from Snowden, on the mass surveillance of Facebook, Google, Microsoft and eavesdropping by Britain’s GCHQ on foreign politicians at G20 summits in London.

“I believe that Edward Snowden and Bradley Manning are heros. People need to read about them before passing judgement, the main stream media does not tell us everything.

“Street art gives voice to the people; I hope that my work encourages more street artists to comment on current affairs.”


Edward Snowden street art

Edward Snowden street art


You can follow Sarah and SLM art here.

So now when you’re next wondering up Tib Street in the Northern Quarter, you know precisely who painted it and why!


Alison x  (your 4Manchester Women Editor)


Photographs: SLM art

This is not a sponsored blog post.







London Road Fire Station

Update – campaign to save iconic Manchester Building


Back in November last year we helped light the touch paper on a campaign to save London Road Fire Station – the fabulous building opposite Piccadilly Train Station. The aim being to protect it for future generations as an iconic gateway to our city, as well as giving it a useful purpose befitting it’s size and history.

London Road Fire Station Manchster


You may remember the story – this Grade II listed building which has been owned by Britannia Hotels for over a quarter of a century, is in a shocking state. After broken promises and a failed compulsory purchase order, the building is rotting before our eyes.

You can read all about it here.


Enter The Friends of London Road Fire Station

Friends of London Road Fire Station


Since we last checked in on them, campaign organiser Adam Prince has been busy!

  • The petition now stands at over 3,000
  • 1,100 Twitter followers
  • Friends of London Road Fire Station (a community trust) has been formed.
  • Great new web site

A few months ago, another Manchester icon was threatened. The overwhelming response from Mancunians meant that the powers that be thought twice about messing with MOSI (Museum of Science and Industry).

I urge everyone who felt strongly about MOSI to support this campaign and help to shift the stalemate.


Heritage Hostage – art exhibition


To help raise awareness of London Road Fire Station’s plight, a community exhibition called ‘Heritage Hostage’ featuring artistic visions of the possible future uses of the derelict Fire Station is set to open in central Manchester over the August bank holiday weekend.

The exhibition is being housed at 4a Piccadilly Place, just a stone’s throw from the fire station, and runs from 22nd to 25th August, with free entry for the public.


Friends of London Road Fire Station


As well as the visionary depictions of what the iconic structure could become after restoration, the show will include contemporary artworks focusing on the building.

Local artists Oliver East from Elbow and Caroline Johnson, are among those contributing works. East’s painting will be for sale during the weekend, with proceeds donated to the Friends, along with other artists who will make donations and sales.


London Road Fire StationCaroline Johnson, Alex Lowther-Harris, Mancsy


Pride of place will also be given to historic artefacts, including a reproduction of the original blueprints for the fire station.

The programme also includes daily workshops and talks. Bob Bonner, former London Road firefighter and now voluntary curator of Greater Manchester Fire Service Museum in Rochdale, will be giving a talk on the history of the building, alongside other speakers with a passion for the building.


Adam Prince, Secretary of the Friends of London Road Fire Station, said:

“The current planning permission for this building expires in September. We are delighted that Manchester’s artistic community is supporting our cause by loaning and donating works.  There is much passion against the destructive mismanagement and misuse an important icon that could be so many great things for our city if it were released from its Heritage Hostage status”.


Pop along and show your support for The Friends of London Road Fire Station – and help save this grand old lady which stands crumbling at our city’s gateway.


Alison x  (your 4Manchester Women Editor)


Photographs: Friends of London Road Fire Station.

This is not a sponsored blog post.












Black Cats Appreciation Day

Often overlooked – but our lucky charm!


August 17th is Black Cats Appreciation Day!

If you’re thinking of adopting a cat, please consider homing a black one – they’re often overlooked, despite their stunning looks and beautiful shiny coats.


Black Cat Appreciateion Day


We are the proud owners of the most beautiful black cat – he’s called Charley Bucket, he’s from Chorley and he’s almost four years old!

He was our engagement present to one another. If I’m being honest we were going to have his ginger brother. Luckily for us his ginger brother had already gone by the time we went to collect him – so we took Charley home with us instead. It was the best thing that could have happened.


Charley writing his blog


Charley was born the same week that I was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma. When I look at him I see the extra time I’ve been given. And if I’m being absolutely honest I thought that if I didn’t make it, at least Tris wouldn’t be by himself because he’d have Charley.

I had to spend a long time in bed whilst I was ill, and Charley stayed with me. Just like he’s with me now on the sofa next to me while I work.

He’s such a character, always announcing his arrival through the cat flap with a loud “Harrrow”!

He can turn the bathroom light on by jumping up and grabbing the light cord with his paws, and he’s just a little bit in love with one of our neighbours who he spent months trying to woo by bringing her packets of pork scratchings from the local pub.

But my favourite Charley story is when one Christmas, with all the family sitting around the TV watching The Queen’s speech, he suddenly decided to bring us his Christmas present. God Save the Queen was royaly drowned out by screaming as he proudly presented us with a beautiful little mouse! Happy Christmas!


alstaples's Charley Bucket album on Photobucket



Please don’t discount black pussy cats and contact the Trafford Cat’s Protection Homing Officer on 0161 610 2189, or via their website

Alison & Charley x (your 4Manchester Women Editor ….. and Top Cat!)


Photographs: Alison Staples

This is not a sponsored blog post.













Free Lunch to Fight Food Waste!

Free lunch for 5,000 people – Piccadilly Gardens, 12noon – 4pm on Saturday 15th June 2013


Something rather unusual is going to be happening in Piccadilly Gardens tomorrow (15th June 2013) – free food – loads of it!



The initiative which is a partnership between Manchester Friends of the Earth, FareShare North West, Cracking Good Food and Feeding the 5000, aims to highlight the travesty that is food waste. Here are some fast facts for you:


  • UK Households waste around 20% of all the food we buy – but the good news is that this suggests a 17% reduction since 2007. We’re improving!
  • All the world’s nearly one billion hungry people could be lifted out of malnourishment on less than a quarter of the food that is wasted in the US, UK and Europe.
  • An estimated 20 to 40% of UK fruit and vegetables rejected even before they reach the shops – mostly because they do not match the supermarkets’ excessively strict cosmetic standards.
  • The bread and other cereal products thrown away in UK households alone would have been enough to lift 30 million of the world’s hungry people out of malnourishment
  • An estimated 15 million tonnes of food wasted in Britain from the plough to the plate.
  • 10% of rich countries’ greenhouse gas emissions come from growing food that is never eaten.


So what’s happening?


Five thousand members of the public will be served a free, hot, nutritious lunch by volunteers, in Manchester’s Piccadilly Gardens on Saturday 15th June between 12noon and 4pm. The meal will be made entirely from ingredients that would otherwise have been wasted, such as fresh but cosmetically imperfect vegetables and fruits.







The menu will include a delicious curry made from fresh, nutritious, and ‘wonky’ produce. The public will be invited to participate in cooking sessions as well as meeting a range of organisations tackling food waste in and around Manchester.


Why is it happening?


Feeding the 5,000 is an international campaign that seeks to highlight how easy it is to reduce the levels of food waste in the UK and around the world, and how governments, businesses and individuals can help.

A number of partner organisations, charities and community organisations will be present at the event to share information about how to reduce food waste, and to offer fun food related activities for adults and kids.


There’s no such thing as a free lunch


In return for a lovely meal, the event will urge the public to take in some information about food waste issues, reduce their food waste, and demand that businesses do the same. There will be a focus on practical solutions to food waste at home.

They’’ll also be asking the public to sign up to the international Feeding the 5000 pledge, which calls for action from governments, retailers and food businesses. Members of the public can pledge at any time on the Feeding the 5000 website (


Have fun – and remember that in the pursuit of reducing food waste, it’s perfectly acceptable to lick your plate clean!


Alison x  (your 4Manchester Women Editor)



This is not a sponsored blog post.










Save MOSI – sign the petition!

Let’s send a message – HANDS OFF MOSI!




We were horrified to hear at the beginning of the month that The Museum of Science and Industry (MOSI) was under threat. Much loved by our readers, we were the first to get a petition online calling for it to be protected.

With 3,000 signatures in the first 24 hours and nearly 5,000 in total, 4Manchester Women was part of the ‘Manchester Voice’ that roared, convincing The Manchester Evening News to take ‘Save MOSI’ on as a campaign.

The latest word is that Culture minister Ed Vaizey has insisted that MOSI will not close.

We are of course delighted with this news and would like to thank everyone who signed our petition and others for your support. Having said that, we will be watching to make sure that Mr Vaizey keeps to his word. Otherwise he’s going to have a serious fight on his hands!


Alison x  (your 4Manchester Women Editor)

22nd June 2013


save mosi


The Museum of Science and Industry (MOSI) in Manchester is under threat of closure under plans being considered by the National Science Museum Group (owners of The Science Museum in London).

The aim of this petition is to show the National Science Museum Group and government how important MOSI is to the people (and particularly the parents and children) of Manchester.


And to provide evidence of need to any campaigns going forward should the threat of closure become real.


*IMPORTANT* Please sign this petition if you agree with the following statement:




Upon reaching our target – the petition will be presented to those listed above, the press, Manchester City Council and any other relevant bodies.

Please spread this petition as much as possible through the social media share buttons – and any other appropriate way.

We’re not about London bashing or banging on about the North / South divide – but to quote Blackley MP Graham Stringer who helped create MOSI:

“If they think they can mess around with facilities in Manchester, they don’t know Manchester people!”

A statement from Science Museum Group said: “The Science Museum Group has to address a large projected operating deficit from 2014 onwards and is assessing a range of options to address this situation.

“Despite making significant cost reductions across the Group, we are still faced with a significant annual deficit in 2014/15 and beyond because of cuts in Grant in Aid.

“The Science Museum Group is assessing a range of ways to balance the books and to ensure that we continue to care for our collections and maintain our role in inspiring the next generation of scientists and engineers.”


For more information visit and

Please note that we are aware of the Manchester Evening News’ campaign and petition and are trying to make contact with them to see how we can work with them.

Manchester Businesses present a five point plan to save MOSI.

To read about what MOSI means to us read this great blog by Red Rose Mummy.

Show your support and sign the petition below:

Please note that in accordance with our Data Protection policy, your details will be held securely and will not be used for any other purposes than this petition. We need to collect this information to show that you are a real person.




The Museum of Science and Industry (MOSI) in Manchester is under threat of closure under plans being considered by the National Science Museum Group (owners of The Science Museum in London).

The aim of this petition is to show the National Science Museum Group and government how important MOSI is to the people (and particularly the mums and children) of Manchester - and to provide evidence of need to any campaigns going forward should the threat of closure become real.

*IMPORTANT* Please sign this petition if you agree with the following statement:


Upon reaching our target - the petition will be presented to those listed above, the press, Manchester City Council and any other relevant bodies.

Please spread this petition as much as possible through the social media share buttons - and any other appropriate way.

"If they think they can mess around with facilities in Manchester, they don’t know Manchester people!" Blackley MP Graham Stringer who helped create MOSI

For more information visit


4,586 signatures

Share this with your friends:



Live below the line

The challenge is to eat for five days for £1 per day


It’s still not too late to take part in Live Below the Line – this campaign run by Christian Aid, Oxfam, Save the Children, Unicef and many more runs until 30th June 2013.


Live Below the Line Logo


My husband was a voluntary teacher in Zambia for two two years, so international development is close to his heart.

Whereas food is quite close to mine! But being a supportive wife, plus it seemed like a really interesting challenge, I agreed to give it a go!

It’s amazing if you start to add things up just how much you can spend on food – your groceries bill, meals out, coffee and cakes with friends. It all mounts up.





The Live Below the Line web site gives you lots of help with recipes and five different shopping lists and weekly daily menu suggestions (Click here for recipe Guide).


Example weekly shopping List

15 eggs – £1.25
800g (20 slices) of bread– 47p
907g of frozen mixed veggies – 73p
20 sausages – £1
1kg rice – 40p
410g tin of baked beans – 29p
4x125g of yoghurt – 35p
10 value chicken stock cubes – 10p
567g value new potatoes – 23p
300g value mushy peas – 10p


As you can see, it’s shopping in the budget range and from bin ends. It’s repetitive, not very exciting and not really packed with your five a day.


Here’s how we got on


Using a mis match of different shopping lists – these updates are taken from our Facebook diary:


Day 1 - Breakfast (porridge with water = 6.5p), lunch (value noodles 11p + banana 20p), dinner (veggie chilli + rice = 50p). Total = 88p

Day 2 – Breakfast (porridge with water + jam = 10p), lunch (home made carrot and ginger soup = 20p), dinner (veggie pasta = 60p). Total 90p. “It really shouldn’t seem this tough!”

Day 3 – Breakfast (porridge with water + jam = 10p), lunch (home made carrot and ginger soup + banana = 40p), dinner (split pea curry with sweet potato, kidney beans and homegrown sprouts (I kid you not) = 50p). Total £1.00. “Bloated and tired!”

Day 4 – Breakfast (porridge with water + jam = 10p), lunch (value noodles + left over curry = 11p), dinner (carrot and kidney bean burgers, potatoes and peas = 60p). Total 81p. “Roll on the last day!”


Live below the line meals


Day 5 – Breakfast (porridge with water + jam = 10p), lunch (home made carrot and ginger soup = 20p), dinner (potato omelette with peas and sweet corn = 55p). Total 85p. “Two hours to go. It’s been tougher than expected!”


Live below the line meal


The moral of the story is that there is more than enough food in the world for everyone, yet many people in the world are struggling to live on less than £1 per day.

What I learned is that you can live on a lot less than you think. But eating for £1 per day is difficult and I don’t think we did very well on the vitamins and minerals front.

In addition, that it’s really difficult to keep to when you’ve got work events to go to, so I’m fessing up now to having a couple of freebie cocktails during the week!

Why don’t you give it a go – visit for more information.

Good luck!


Alison x  (your 4Manchester Women Editor)


Photographs: Alison Staples

This is not a sponsored blog post.













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