Coronavirus has often been called an “invisible threat”. But the damage it’s caused has been visible on our NHS heroes’ faces for months.
We’ve all seen the pictures of nurses and doctors staring directly into the camera after spending a dozen hours with PPE pressed onto their skin.
Tired eyes. Bruised cheeks. Thick, red rectangular imprints across the bridge of their nose.
By the end of their shifts, healthcare workers can look and feel like they’ve gone ten rounds with the virus.
After seeing these images of the exhausted key workers go viral, SKIN HQ saw a perfect opportunity to help. They elected to offer hydrating facials that soothe damaged skin.
And, by way of thanks for all their hard work, NHS staff won’t be charged a penny.
Demand has been enormous, and thousands have already signed up to book an appointment at one of SKIN HQ’s five clinics across the UK.
Founder Haroon Danis said: “When we went into lockdown, we wanted to do something to help the NHS heroes and key workers.
“We started to notice images of nurses and doctors with damaged skin from constant use of the PPE, and we knew what we could do.
“By offering free hydrating facials, we’re helping these workers get rid of all the dry skin and repair some of the damage left behind by PPE – which can be caused after working long hours in sweaty, humid conditions.
“Our treatments help to ease some of the bruising and make people feel better both physically and mentally.”
More than 23,000 people have rushed to reserve a facial since the campaign was launched back in April.
“We’ve had such a really positive response,” Haroon tells us.
“It’s been really amazing for us to be honest, and all the team are really proud to be part of it.”
Over £1,380,000 worth of free SKIN HQ sessions have been allocated to NHS members so far – giving nurses and doctors the chance to recuperate from endless hours of brave work on the frontline.
And Haroon has confirmed the offer is not stopping any time soon.
“We’re not taking it down; we’re not ending the campaign,” he tells us.
“If any NHS heroes want to join up, they can at any time. We just want to keep it going until this situation is all over.
“All you need to do is go to our website and it’s right there on the homepage. Fill in your details and we will call you back to arrange a time.”
The very first SKIN HQ was set up right here in Manchester on St John Street, and the clinic has gone from strength to strength ever since – having expanded nationwide (to London, Liverpool, Birmingham and Bradford).
Interest in their franchising scheme has also surged during lockdown – with inquiries flooding in from both medical professionals and those in sectors affected by the financial crisis.
To learn more about the amazing work SKIN HQ are doing, head over to their website.
Manchester music store Forsyth is giving away free music lessons
Manchester music store Forsyth is giving away a host of free music lessons next month in a bid to inspire people to learn a new instrument, or pick up an old one.
The store is giving new and returning musicians a chance to receive a 10–15-minute free music taster session as part of its Music for All Learn to Play ’22 event.
Taking place across 8 and 9 October between 10am-5pm (8 October) and 1130am-30pm (9 October),short taster music lessons will allow all ages and abilities to have a musical experience that could turn into a lifetime of enjoyment, or even a new career.
Speaking on the free music lesson initiative, Emma from Forsyths said: “The past two years have shown how important music is to all our lives and how it can bring people together even in the most difficult of circumstances.
“We aim to help as many people as possible understand the unique joys and benefits of learning an instrument (or taking part in a choir).
“Anyone interested in learning to play an instrument or looking to pick it up again, should come and join us for this two-day celebration of music making.
“We’re delighted to be part of Music for All’s Learn to Play ’22 event, and we can’t wait to get started.”
OBE Jools Holland, Patron of Music for All, said: “Making music is very important to me. It’s my work, my pleasure, my friend, companion and therapist.
The charity Music for All believes passionately in the unique power of music to change lives and that is why it runs Learn to Play.
Music for All believes everyone should have equal access to music making.
The charity supports disadvantaged music makers by providing cash grants for tuition and instruments and by donating instruments directly.
Celebrated author Dame Hilary Mantel has died ‘suddenly yet peacefully’ aged 70
Dame Hilary Mantel has died aged 70.
The unexpected passing of the critically-acclaimed author whose celebrated career spans nearly five decades has just been announced by her agents 4th Estate Books and her publishing team at HarperCollins in two separate statements released this morning – who confirmed that she died “suddenly yet peacefully”.
The Glossop-born writer was famed for historical fiction work, and was most-known for being the author of the beloved Wolf Hall trilogy.
The statement by her agents confirming her passing reads: “We are heartbroken at the death of our beloved author, Dame Hilary Mantel, and our thoughts are with her friends and family, especially her husband, Gerald.
“This is a devastating loss and we can only be grateful she left us with such a magnificent body of work.”
Mantel’s publishers HarperCollins called her “one of the greatest English novelists of this century”.
The company’s statement reads: “It is with great sadness that AM Heath and HarperCollins announce that bestselling author Dame Hilary Mantel DBE died suddenly yet peacefully yesterday, surrounded by close family and friends, aged 70.
“Hilary Mantel was one of the greatest English novelists of this century and her beloved works are considered modern classics.
Mantel has twice been awarded the Booker Prize, the first time for the 2009 novel Wolf Hall, a fictional account of Thomas Cromwell’s rise to power in the court of Henry VIII, and secondly for the 2012 novel Bring Up the Bodies, the second instalment of the Cromwell trilogy.
She was the first woman, and fourth person, to receive the award twice.