Category Archives: One 2 Three

Brian Hughes from Rainer Hughes Solicitors – Redundancy

It was good to welcome back BRIAN HUGHES, consultant solicitor of SHENFIELD based RAINER HUGHES on today’s One 2 Three.

Brian Hughes

We talked about the dreaded R word – that’s REDUNDANCY.

Not just redundancy but other reasons why someone might lose their job or be fired and how having a solicitor on your side is always a good idea.

You can listen to our chat here –


The Billericay Reading Rooms – Andy Maddocks

The Billericay Reading Rooms are historic premises dating back to the mid 19th century, located in Billericay High Street
If it had not been for the forethought of local residents in the mid-1800s who were concerned about the “need to educate the working classes and to aid their growth and improvement” this building would never have been built.
The Reading Rooms continue to this day so I was pleased to welcome Vice Chairman of The Reading Rooms Andy Maddocks to tell all about this historic community resource.

Andy Maddocks

You can listen to our chat here –


The Reading Rooms Hall and Committee Room are available for hire for private and public functions and viewing of the facilities may be made by appointment.

Telephone 07917076490 or email

The reading Rooms website is here

Fancy a game of tag?

Now I guess most of played TAG at some time when we were children, but I doubt that anyone  took it very seriously.

So it may come as a surprise to hear that an American woman took it seriously enough to fly 4000 miles to tell someone that they were “IT” before immediately jetting back home.

Yes it’s all true – Georgina Wilkinson disguised herself as a gardener and then tagged Drew McEwan whilst he was at a photoshoot for his niece’s christening in Loch Lomond.

Apparently Drew, Georgina and 8 others have been playing this bizarre international example of the game since they all met in China back in 2014.

Drew, originally from Newton Stewart in Dumfries and Galloway, said: “I didn’t even get a chance to talk to Georgina. You have to just tag and run, you can’t stay and chat.

“I was in shock that she’d put so much effort into it. Flying over from America and back in one day is unbelievable. She had to make sure she was home in plenty of time for work on Monday. It’s my turn to tag one of the group now.

Well good luck with that!

Margaret Mills was on a much more serious tack this week as she related details of how Essex was affected by The Black Death.

If you missed it you can listen again here to what Margaret had to say on this appalling historical episode of the past in Essex: –

Keep well til I see you again next time around,

Value for money?

Today we heard all about the man who set up a stall at a Car-Free Day festival in Vancouver selling bottles of Unfiltered Hot Dog water for $38 a bottle – that’s just under £30.

And just to be clear what was on offer was water that has been used to cook hot dogs in.

The unusual beverage claimed to offer a whole heap of benefits like helping people to lose weight, make you look younger, increase brain function and improve vitality.

Sound too good to be true? That’s because it is.

But in spite of this a flyer promoting the product even contained “testimonials” from ‘professionals” including one by a Dr Cynthia Dringus, supposedly, a Nobel Prize-winning nutritionist, who said: “Hot Dog Water is the NEW coconut water!”

Incredibly the stall sold no less than 60 litres of the stuff!

However the product was actually created as part of a stunt to highlight how easy it is to be lead astray by misleading health marketing and the fine print on the flyer read “Hot Dog Water in its absurdity hopes to encourage critical thinking related to product marketing and the significant role it can play in our purchasing choices.”

The stall also sold hot dog lip balm, breath spray and body fragrance.

We also learnt about the Polish ecological group – Eco-Logic who’ve come a cropper after placing a tracker on the back of a white stork to track the bird’s migratory habits.



Well it seems that the bird flew some 3,700 miles, and was traced to the Blue Nile Valley in eastern Sudan before the charity lost contact which would have been OK had not some unscrupulous person found the sim card, and placed it in their own phone and then proceeded to wrack up around £2000 worth of phone calls which the Polish ecologists will now have to pay for.

Ever been had?

See you again tomorrow,


Billericay’s Free Family Fun Summerfest – Yvonne Kyndt

Billericay town’s popular Summerfest event is organised by Billericay Mayflower Rotary Club will take place at Billericay Sun Corner this Sunday 8th July 2018. Time: 11.00am – 5.00pm

There is something for everybody to enjoy the day together with the family and friends and it’s free!

Joining me today to tell us all about this year’s Summerfest was Yvonne Kyndt.

Yvonne Kyndt

You can listen to our chat here –


Billericay Summerfest website is here

An investment opportunity


On today’s show I was joined once more by GAVIN PERRETT of Hawkhurst Alternative Investments.

Hawkhurst Alternative Investments have been running a series of seminars at the Mary Green Manor Hotel on London Road Brentwood; the next one will be on Wednesday week, the 11th July.

If you’d like to be there and hear more, you should aim to arrive at 6:30 for a 7pm start. The evening will be geared to hopefully enable you to make informed decisions about creating and growing an impressive property portfolio.

Refreshments and a light buffet will be provided at the start of the seminar.

If for some reason you can’t make that date, all is not lost as they’ll be back there again at the same time on 12th September.

Today Gavin provided examples of some of the current property “hotspots”, and what it was that made them stand out.

You might have been surprised to learn that many of these were in the Midlands and North rather than London and the Home Counties as might have been expected.

If you missed what Gavin told me today, listen again here: –

Of course, you can also get more information from the Hawkhurst Alternative Investments website

In the second hour of today’s programme, rather than looking forward, we turned the clock back when Margaret Mills looked at the, not unsuccessful career of a female tobacco smuggler from Leigh-on-Sea, who was known as Mother Gregson.

You can listen again to what Margaret had to say about this enterprising lady here: –

See you again next week,



Welcome to July!

The start of a new month and another week of hopefully good weather!

On today’s show we heard the bizarre story of the offer made (but subsequently withdrawn) by one of the Russian Burger King franchises to offer a reward of 3 million rubles (about £35k) and a lifetime supply of whoppers, to any girl who managed to get herself pregnant by a World Cup player.

Wonder how any claim could have been successfully proved if all the potential impregnators had left the country!

Staying with the bizarre, we heard about the cruise with a difference aboard the so-called “TORTURE SHIP”.


The vessel is actually no more than a barge which provides an annual one-night trip across Lake Constance between Germany and Switzerland for fans of bondage and sadomasochism.

Organisers were a bit disappointed by this year’s turnout which was sadly affected by the fact that on the night chosen for this year’s outing, Germany were playing Sweden in the World Cup.

Presumably the “Torture Ship” does not provide TV in the cabins!

Nevertheless 500 bondage and masochist fans, flaunting an impressive array of bondage gear, including gimp masks, figure hugging corsets, horse masks and a collection of whips and chains, still took to the water.

Better luck next year then!

See you again tomorrow,



Billericay’s Boots2Africa – Iain Finch

Phoenix FM presenter Bob Simpson has lead an appeal in Billericay for used football boots and sports shoes to send to underprivileged children in Africa via the Boots2Africa campaign.
Iain Finch is the founder of Boots2Africa and Bob was very pleased to welcome Iain to the Phoenix FM studios to hand over the latest batch of 100+ boots donated by the good people of Billericay and B.A.R.K (Billericay Acts of Random Kindness)

Bob and Iain Finch with just a few of the boots!


Millions of children across Africa, have no shoes, for school, life and playing games. Disease, infections and snakebites kill thousands and injure and incapacitate many others every year.
Boots2Africa collects, transports and distributes donated boots to Africa’s children and young adults through relief organisations.

You can listen to our chat here –

Bob would like to add his thanks to the people of Billericay who over the last few months have donated over 120 pairs of boots and sport shoes as well as a good deal of kit. The donation point is still there in Billericay outside 9 Burleigh Close CM12 0YG so if you do have any good condition Boots or sports shoes or sports kit that your children have grown out of please continue to donate.

More boots and kit!

The Boots2Africa website is here

The Cromer Park Family Fun Day – Anthony Simpson, Wayne Hannaway and Scott Hannaway

We’re well and truly into summer now and it’s the time of year for some great community days out with Summer fairs and fun day’s going on all over the place. One such event coming up is a  fun day that not only has a fantastic line up of entertainment for all the family, but is raising funds for charity too, It’s the Cromer Park Family fun Day taking place on Saturday July 21st, and today I was joined by Anthony Simpson, Wayne Hannaway and Scott Hannaway from The Cromer Park Foundation, to tell us all about it!

Anthony Simpson, Wayne Hannaway and Scott Hannaway

You can listen to our chat here –


Tickets available here

And you can find out more about the fun day on Facebook here

It’s raining octopus!

We all know the expression – “It’s raining cats and dogs” but the Chinese city of Qingdao has just been hit by a storm which included octopuses, starfish and prawns.

The freakish storm packing hurricane force winds, caused widespread disruption with heavy rain and hail which shattered windows and pockmarked buildings.

It is believed that offshore waterspouts were responsible for the dumping of shrimps, octopus, starfish and other marine creatures on the city.

Now there’s a sight you don’t see every day!

Later in the show I was joined by Margaret Mills who told us of links between two Essex villages – Fryerning and Purleigh  – with Disney and Washington.

Listen again here to what Margaret had to say on this subject: –

See you again next week,

A couple of life’s little problems

During today’s music packed edition of the show, we rejoiced in news of two calamities which have reached us from across “the pond”.

First up came news of the girl who thought it might be a good idea to see if she could shove her head up an exhaust pipe.

And guess what – surprise, surprise, she got it stuck and had to be cut free, only then to be charged by police for under age drinking.

A great day there then!

But if she thought she had a bad day, well that was a mere trifle when compared with our second tale of woe.

This involved a 5-year old boy who, whilst attending a wedding reception, accidentally knocked over a sculpture sitting on a plinth in the hallway.

Sadly the artist who created the masterpiece insists on being reimbursed for the amount of time he spent working on it and for what he considers it’s worth – $132,000 (about £100k)!

Insurers acting for the venue insist that, although the item was totally unprotected with no warning signs placed close to it, the child’s mother was responsible for the supervision of her child, was clearly negligent in this respect and therefore liable for the resultant damage.

They have accordingly submitted their claim to the family who are now trying to work out how to deal with the issue.

Oh dear!

See you again tomorrow,


All about Harry

Last January the lovely Harry came into the studio to sing live and chat about her musical future. Six months later she’s back with her brand new EP and keen to tell Mike all about the music her plans and the future. She also plays two songs live in the studio

You can hear the interview right here

Shenfield Operatic are busy again as they launch their fundraiser next week entitled Let em eat Cake . Ali and Kate Smith called in to chat to Mike about the show

You can hear the interview again here

Let ‘em Eat Cake
Friday 7.30pm
Saturday 2.30pm and 7.30pm
Blackmore Village Hall
Tickets £15
07734 817418 or email

Amazing Me – Tackling Mental Health and Wellbeing in Schools – Tracy Richardson

Mental health problems affect about 1 in 10 children and young people. They include depression, anxiety and conduct disorder, and are often a direct response to what is happening in their lives.
Alarmingly, however, 70% of children and young people who experience a mental health problem have not had appropriate interventions at a sufficiently early age.
That’s why I was pleased to learn that a new initiative to tackle mental health problems in children, is taking off locally.
Amazing Me, is designed to provide primary schools with a programme packed full of accessible and engaging materials to build good mental health and wellbeing, and my guest today was Tracy Richardson, who came in to tell us all about it.

Tracy Richardson

You can listen to our chat here –


You can find out more about Amazing Us and their Amazing Me programme here

Or you can email Tracy direct at

Is this really how to get women to take an interest in football?

You know, over my long life I really did think I’d heard and seen everything, but this just has to top it all. 

With World Cup fever getting guys completely distracted, a Mexican lingerie company has launched a product that they believe will encourage women to get into the football spirit as well.

Yes, VICKY FORM has created a pair of knickers that vibrate every time a goal is scored during the World Cup.

The manufacturers say that the product is designed to get couples equally excited about the matches.

Apparently the knickers are linked to a robot which interprets the action and transforms it into vibrations in real time making the knickers move.

The TV commercial for the new product shows the woman apparently becoming ever more excited as the match becomes more intense, until a foul causes the knickers to abruptly stop vibrating and she is seen jumping up and shouting at the TV, “Penalty! Blind referee, that’s a penalty!”

Well guys, all I can say is that you’d better hope for a high scoring game!

Margaret Mills brought us abruptly back down to earth in the second hour of the show when she took us over to the Essex village of Pleshey as it was in the 14th century.

Listen again here to what Margaret told me today: –

See you once more next week,

Do you know your rights?


Our very own fountain of knowledge of all things legal, BRIAN HUGHES, consultant solicitor of Shenfield based solicitors, RAINER HUGHES joined me once more this afternoon and today turned his attention to consumer rights.

The fact is that every time we buy anything from purchasing groceries to taking out a mortgage we are entering a contract, but do we all know and understand our rights?

Listen again here to what Brian had to say on this subject: –

In the second hour of today’s programme, we heard that someone has bid the tidy sum of $3.3m (£2.5m) to have lunch in a Manhattan based steakhouse with 87-year old Warren Buffett, who earlier this year was placed third on the Forbes rich list.

The winning bidder will be able to take up tom 7 friends with them.

I’ll put money on Mr Buffett getting his meal for free, but maybe he’ll leave a tip.

One tip the guests will not get from Mr Buffett is what stocks he might invest in next, but other than that they will be free to discuss anything with him.

Well at that price you’d certainly hope so.

Right I’m off now to grab a sandwich and I’ll see you again tomorrow,

A crash course, maybe!

On today’s show we heard about the hotel valet who had a really bad day at the office after the car he was parking ended up under another vehicle, whilst impaling a third vehicle on concrete posts.

In truth a Porsche can be a difficult beast to control if you are unfamiliar with them as they are apt to “take off” the minute you slip them into Drive, and with an ability to accelerate from 0 to 60mph in under 5 seconds, parking them needs a lot of skill and care.

In this case it was a literal pile up as when the valet slipped the Porsche into Drive, it immediately hit an orange SUV, becoming neatly stashed away under that vehicle whilst pushing a third car into some posts for good measure.


Later in the show we heard about the tele-evangelist who is really reaching for the stars.

Yes, Louisiana based JESSE DUPLANTIS, who runs Jesse Duplantis Ministries claims that during a divine conversation, Jesus ordered him to persuade his followers to stump up the readies to buy a brand new DASSAULT FALCON 7X for just $54m.

Duplantis goes on to tell his followers that jets, especially nice ones with good fuel efficiency, allow him and his ministries to reach more people around the world. 

“All it’s gonna do is it’s going to touch people, it’s going to reach people, it’s going to change lives one soul at a time,” Duplantis said of the aircraft.

“I really believe that if Jesus was physically on the earth today, he wouldn’t be riding a donkey,” he added.

According to prosperity gospel preachers and believers, nice things like jets and cars and rent money are God’s way of blessing people for a faithful life.

And by their logic sharing your wealth with the church will make God bless you even more.

So now you know!

I’ll see you again next week,


Billericay Beer Festival

Preparations are now well under way for the return of the Billericay Beer Festival; the 8th edition will take place on Friday June 22nd – Sunday June 24th 2018 at Hannakins Farm Community Centre in Billericay.
As well as trying to provide a fantastic community event it’s purpose is to raise as much as possible for the Billericay Lions Charity which help people in the local community as well as supporting Lions global projects. It all kicks off on Friday.

Friday 22nd June 5 pm – 11 pm Entry £3.00
Saturday 23rd June 11 am – 11 pm Entry £3.00
Sunday 24th June 12 noon – 6 pm Entry free
At all sessions – refundable souvenir glass deposit £2.00

It’s all happening at Hannakins Farm Community Centre, Rosebay Avenue, Billericay, CM12 0SY.

Walk the walk!


I was joined today by JULIE EASLIE from KINETIKA who have been arranging annual walking festivals in Essex.

Over the past 3 years, Kinetika’s project, Thurrock 100, has mapped and explored 31 local walks, run a dance programme and published a book of 100 local stories and engaged with literally thousands of people.

This year’s walking programme runs between the 7th and 22nd July and will be incorporating the diverse food cultures which exist across the area, and by introducing a new 2-year Kitchen Table project, they aim to explore the stories of the diverse communities from around the world who have settled along the lower Thames Estuary.

A special date for your diary is 20th June when a SCREEN PRINTING WORKSHOP for adults only,  is being held between 10am and 6pm. This workshop is going to be producing a silk tablecloth, which will be carried on all the walks and then laid out in style on Saturday 21st July to celebrate the Chilean Community Feast in La Cocina Publica at the Port of Tilbury.

This workshop will be supervised by artist, Sofie Layton, and held at the Kinetika Studio, 119 Artists Studios, High House Production Park, Artisan Way, Off Purfleet Bypass, Purfleet, Essex RM19 1AS.

You can get more information about this at the KINETIKA website – .

For the walks go to

Listen again here to what Julie told me about how they are linking food experiences into the T100 Recipe walks which are being especially planned and led by volunteers well-versed in the geography and history of the area: –


In the second hour today we heard about the council workmen, who might feel that they ought to go back to school for some extra tuition, after they misspelt the word SCHOOL in the road outside the entrance to a primary school in the Wirral.


I’m not here tomorrow so I’ll see you next on Thursday,

Jazz lives on!

I was honoured to be joined on today’s show by two legends from the world of jazz – Keith Ball also known as Kenny Ball Jnr, son of the one and only Kenny Ball and Peter Corrigan who has been putting together jazz concerts for donkeys years full of some of the biggest names from the world of jazz. 

Peter brought his BAND OF HOPE to the Queen’s Theatre, Hornchurch back in February 1976 and in 10 days time on the 17th June, he and Keith will be back there together again to present JAZZ THROUGH THE AGES.

Listen again here to what Keith and Peter had to tell me today:-

Later in the programme we heard about how someone, although being investigated for misconduct, was granted 7 months compassionate leave from her £45,000 a year job due to stress resulting from that very misconduct hearing.

So stressed was Sgt Leanne Carr of Lincolnshire police, that during this compassionate leave, she posted a steady stream of photos on her Facebook page showing her taking in the sun in Cyprus, snorkelling in Thailand, snowboarding in the Austrian Alps, plus a trip to Cape Town in South Africa.

Now in most places where I’ve worked, if you were stressed by the pressure of work, you would be  told that if the heat was too much for you, you should “get out of the kitchen”. And if you had been under investigation for any kind of misdemeanour, “that would have been that”. 

Things are clearly rather different in some parts of the the public sector!

See you again next week – if I can stand the pace!

Time for a treat

News is just in from Canada that a wild life animal park is in trouble for failing to tell police that they were taking one of their charges – a bear no less – out for an ice cream, as a treat!

Not too surprisingly the zoo’s permit requires them to alert authorities when any animals are moved from the zoo.

Furthermore members of the public are also prohibited from having any contact with animals like bears, and presumably this also includes ice cream vendors!

Later in the show, Margaret Mills dropped by to tell us about a one-time benefactor of Billericay, a man who rejoiced in the somewhat unusual name of Thomas Jenner Spitty.

You can listen again here to what Margaret told me today:-

See you again next time,