INTERVIEWS
Building a future on gems from the past

Building a future on gems from the past

He’s weathered everything from early family break-up to homelessness, struggled with dyslexia and survived a tough six years in the Army – but Peter Smith is finally following his dream and running his own business – Shanklin Antiques. He tells Island Life how he got there, and his vision for

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Paramedic: 25 Years in the job

Paramedic: 25 Years in the job

From Saturday night cliffhangers on the BBC’s Casualty to the more gritty real-life rescue programmes and fly-on-the-wall documentaries – it seems that Britons have become obsessed with viewing scenes of life in the emergency services. But one man who knows all about it from the sharp end is former Island

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Groom Catherine plans for a more stable future

Groom Catherine plans for a more stable future

After a high-profile career that’s involved travelling the world, working for Royal riders and successful polo players and showjumpers, and generally hob-nobbing with the equestrian elite, top people’s groom Catherine Owen is back on Island soil – and working as a freelance groom. Turning 40 proves to be a milestone

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A Wheely Good Time Had by All!

A Wheely Good Time Had by All!

The Isle of Wight Scooter Rally was another roaring success this year, attracting over 5,000 scooters to the event. Amongst the thousands of devoted scooterists were retirees Roy and Carol Eales, who travelled almost 250 miles to the Island from their home city of Sheffield, Yorkshire. Not that the couple

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A View of Life Behind the Lens

A View of Life Behind the Lens

As a regular diary photographer for OK! Magazine, Graham Reading gets to see celebrities up close and personal – even if it’s sometimes through the end of a zoom lens. Which means that an hour spent chatting to him will have the conversation peppered with anecdotes featuring well-known names, from

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Gail Middleton: Talking Books

Gail Middleton: Talking Books

Gail Downey-Middleton’s approach to running a bookshop is distinctly different. In fact, with its welcoming blend of coffee, cake and conversation stirred into an eclectic mix of old and new books, gifts and cards, her award-winning emporium is more community hub than retail outlet.   But then this former model

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‘Cookie’ Neil is 98 and Not Out

‘Cookie’ Neil is 98 and Not Out

It reads like something from an adventure story: a humble baker from the Isle of Wight being presented with France’s highest military honour.  But this is fact and not fiction, for this summer saw 98 year-old naval veteran Neil Shutler receive the Legion D’Honneur for his part in the liberation

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A New Era for Quarr Abbey

A New Era for Quarr Abbey

Thousands of visitors every year come to enjoy the peace, tranquillity and beautiful setting of Quarr Abbey – and 20 years ago a young French monk, Dom Xavier Perrin, was among them. Back then, Fr Xavier was visiting the Island’s religious community from his home monastery in South Brittany –

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