The Return to UK Life

After two years away, I returned home from the Falklands at the end of May 2020, in the middle of the covid-19 pandemic. I had expected to return to many aspects of my past life, but instead found myself returning to a very different world and a very different UK.

We decided to look for somewhere to live close to where I grew up in the beautiful Wye Valley and in June 2020, we moved to Tintern. My husband got a new job working in Bristol (although he has found himself at home more often than not) and I returned to the Civil Service, working from home.

At first, I temporarily returned to my old team in Civil Service HR (Fast Stream and Early Talent) working on a number of HR policy change projects, before moving to the Department of Health and Social Care to work on the covid-19 response in NHS Test and Trace.

It has undoubtedly been a very busy and stressful time and the rest of life has taken a bit of a back seat, whilst I focused on work and recovering from my own encounter with the sars-cov-2 virus, which happened when I was back in the Falklands in March 2020.

As we look forward in 2021 to life after covid-19 (whenever that might be and in whatever form that might come), I am keen to reignite my love for coaching and I am seeking new clients. I’ve added a page to this website, setting out my coaching approach.

Whilst I continue to work towards my ILM Level 7 PG Cert in Executive Coaching, if you are interested in working with me and prepared to have our sessions recorded for assessment by my supervisor, then I am happy to offer some free sessions for anyone that would like to try me out! Please get in touch via email or message me on twitter/LinkedIn and I’ll be in touch.

Departing for Stanley

So I have not blogged for many months, but if you follow me on twitter you are probably aware by now that things have been pretty crazy since last November when I accepted an offer of a two year Senior HR role in the Falkland Islands Government.

After months of preparations, medical assessments, dental treatment, work permit applications, house sale stress, work handovers, packing and long goodbyes, we are finally at the airport in Brize Norton waiting to take off for Mount Pleasant to start a new life in the most southern capital city in the world.

I am excited about the prospect of working in a tiny Civil Service and the challenges of working in HR on a small island where everyone knows everyone. I am sure it is going to be very different to life in the UK Civil Service where there is a huge HR machine with hundreds of people, specialist teams and shared service support. As it is only for two years, I should be returning to the UK Civil Service in 2020, so hope to learn a lot and see what I can take back from these small specks of land in the South Atlantic.

My husband has already written a couple of blog posts over at if you would like to learn more about our adventures and hopefully see some photos from our experience.

I may also try and write here occasionally, but as I am likely to have less time on my hands, now have to abide by two management codes (I’m still a UK Civil Servant on career break, as well as becoming a Falkland Islands one) and will be rationing the internet due to high costs, twitter may be the best place for short updates from me.

Fingers crossed for an uneventful 18+hrs flight and I will try and update again when I can!

Missing Home

As I find myself lounging on my hotel room bed for the fourth night this week, wishing I was at home with my husband, I can’t help but wonder how I let this happen again.

Many people wrongly assume work travel is glamorous and exciting, but any seasoned work traveller will tell you it is far more hassle than it is worth. Occasionally, it can be nice to see somewhere new or catch up with friends or colleagues living in another city, but mainly it’s a whole lot of inconvenience… Continue Reading…

All Change!

I am excited to share with you all that next month, I will be moving into a new job in the Civil Service, as a ‘Senior Cohort Leader’ (Talent Manager) for the Fast Stream graduate programme. I have known for a little while this was coming, but I have finally told my current team and I also got an email from my new manager this week, so it feels a lot more real now. Continue Reading…

Life in the (not-so) new role…

I’m conscious that I’ve not written anything here for many months since I signed on the dotted line to join my current employer, a global investment bank in Birmingham. Initially things were just too busy and more recently I’ve not known what to write, but with a new year comes a renewed enthusiasm for picking up habits which have lapsed and a motivation to start writing.

The new job has been going well and I’ve learnt an awful lot in the past 7 months or so. I’m enjoying working in a truly global team, perhaps spending more time on the phone working with colleagues in Frankfurt than I do talking to those sat next to me here in Birmingham. I’ve enjoyed my visits to Germany too and have been brushing up on my basic German, although I’m still not confident enough to use it on my colleagues. I do enjoy listening to them though and trying to work out what they are saying. It has also been interesting to learn about some of the more quirky aspects of German employment law. Last summer, shortly after I joined, I spent 5 weeks delivering training to our 2015 Global Graduate class, which was an amazing experience and I am looking forward to doing the same again this year when the next cohort joins. Continue Reading…

My Next Move

So it seems my search for a new role is finally over. I have accepted a permanent job offer and I’m really looking forward to helping my new employer to recruit, onboard and develop amazing graduate talent. I’m still working through the pre-employment checks and paperwork at the moment and it seems likely this will take a few weeks, so I don’t know when I’ll be starting yet. I really can’t wait to get going! Continue Reading…

Age of No Retirement

During the last week of April, I spent two fascinating days at the People’s History Museum in Manchester, contributing to an amazing event discussing age diversity and the challenges faced by society due to an ageing population.

On Day 1, I enjoyed a day participating and sharing my thoughts on twitter. The lovely Rachel has created a storify highlighting some of the best tweets from each day of the event, which you can find here: Day 1, Day 2 & Day 3. Continue Reading…

A year on and searching for my next move.

Over the past month or so I kept starting blog posts, but then never finishing them. I’ve found it difficult to write about the ongoing search for my next career move and I feel guilty whenever I do something which is not contributing directly towards that search. I know that my blog could help to raise my profile and therefore be useful, but I’m also nervous that whatever I write may be counter-productive as well and so I leave posts in my drafts folder, unsure whether I should click ‘publish’. Continue Reading…