The Author



Considering you already know our story, I feel I should formally introduce myself!

I was born in beautiful Bournemouth and fortunate enough to spend time in countries abroad with my family; a fabulous opportunity for any child. To gain an insight into other cultures is an education itself.  Learning to live in a new country, amongst people speaking a different language with a very different culture and geographic setting to that of any place I lived before, enabled me to adapt to new situations easily, enjoying a greater sense of adventure. These experiences are ones I will be forever grateful to have experienced, ones I simply could not have learnt in any classroom.

I returned to the South Coast, went to University to study Law with full intentions of becoming a Barrister or Solicitor. During this period of time, I wanted to gain further insight into the legal system so I took temporary employment within a police station in an administrative capacity. I was taken out on patrol as a Civilian observer and thoroughly enjoyed the shift. Shortly after this I became a Special Constable (a voluntary Police Officer), but after a few years, I realised my love of the job had far outgrown my desire to become a Lawyer. With this in mind, I had a change in career direction and became a Police Officer in 2000 with the same Force, Hampshire Constabulary. Unfortunately life took me on another path when I experienced anaphylaxis whilst on duty.  Sadly my latex allergy was too risky for me to continue in a much loved career and I was medically retired a couple of months ago after 15 yeas service.  I loved my job and feel honoured and privileged to have served the people of Hampshire.

I have also lived elsewhere within England, however, home is where the heart is, Bournemouth. Who am I to resist seven glorious miles of golden, sandy beaches; my favourite place. A place where you can lose yourself in your thoughts whilst listening to the waves lapping on the shore.  I love hearing the laughter and excitement of children playing in the sand, and if you enjoy staying out on the beach until the evening, you can often catch a beautiful sunset whilst laying in the sand and staring up at the amazing, twinkling stars….. happy memories. There is no place I’d rather be. It was here that I was introduced to Jason, a Royal Engineer, but he was based at the other end of the country in Yorkshire!  Thankfully for me, he too fell in love with the Dorset Coastline and was fortunate to be posted in the South.

Following a proposal of marriage in Rome, November 2005, we were married in December 2005! I am not sure any man who proposed would anticipate there only being a 5 week engagement period; little did he know what he had let himself in for. I was thrilled to hear of a Wedding competition on a local radio station. Quite naturally I felt compelled to enter it…… ‘forgetting‘ to mention it to my new Fiancé. When I received confirmation that we had been selected as finalists I was forced to confess to a shocked yet amused future husband, who perhaps pondered at what his life would be like from that point onwards! Despite this minor point, we went on to win, and were married 4 weeks later; a beautiful, emotional, joyous Christmas Wedding, shared with our wonderful family and friends.

So from one life changing event to another……

The arrival of our children. Isabelle was born in 2007 and fifteen months later, her brother Oliver arrived in 2008! Extremely fortunate that Isabelle, now known to us as Izzy, was a happy, contented, easy going natured baby, I contemplated how difficult it would really be to have a very short age gap between children. In doing so, I somehow came to the conclusion that the same genetic composition would undoubtedly produce a child of the same character as Izzy. Fortunately this was the case, and possibly one of the best decisions we have made to date……. well until one child hit the terrible twos early and the other began moving, but that is an entirely different story!

Having children, as most parents I think will agree, has been the ultimate in life changing experiences. I view the world very differently now. It was a momentous change; a wonderful part of life’s journey where the milestones seem to hit you a lot quicker…… or perhaps I’m just getting older!

 Most Aspirational Woman 2014 inspirationaward

About us

Izzy and Ollie is a new Children's Safety Education project which was inspired when 2 and a half year old Isabelle called an ambulance for her Mum when she experienced a life threatening allergic reaction. The incident made Joanne consider how wonderful it would be if all young children could be educated about emergency situations. To simply learn their full name, age and address as early as possible (as her 1st book illustrates) could be highly beneficial not only to themselves, but it could also contribute to help save other people’s life. The books follow characters Izzy and Ollie who find themselves entangled in various situations. They encompass Child Safety issues together with simple courses of action that children could learn and replicate should they ever find themselves in the same situation.

From the blog