Charity And Activists – Women Who Lead

Rachel Butler talks about some amazing charity work and activities currently happening within Doncaster.

Words: Rachel Butler

Photography: Warren Draper, John Fuller and Yorkshire Wildlife Park

Charity And Activists

Today, Doncaster Pride is the biggest in South Yorkshire, attracting close to 20,000 revellers each year. Jen Dewsnap has been an active member of the planning team since 2007 and still chairs the event to this day. She’s an activist and mentor and gives Doncaster 200%. We think she deserves an OBE in the not-too-distant future.

Fiona Cahill, Director of The Real JunkFood Project Doncaster and her team are a shining example of grassroots regeneration in our town centre. This pay-as-you-feel cafe run by volunteers has rescued almost 70 tonnes of food from landfill. It’s no wonder they won the NationalIndustry Award for Sustainability in 2017.

Yorkshire Wildlife Park celebrates its 10th Birthday this year. Cheryl Williams, Director of Yorkshire Wildlife Park says what this organisation has built in terms of conservation and welfare of endangered wildlife is nothing short of extraordinary.This great tourist attraction is putting Donny on the national map whilst helping to save the lives of many endangered animals. It’s something we should be incredibly proud of here inDoncaster.

Leading In Business – Women Who Lead

Rachel Butler talks about these inspiring women who each have their own independent businesses.

Words: Rachel Butler

Photography: Warren Draper, John Fuller and courtesy of Terri Anne Diet Plan


Weight loss guru Terri Ann is a self-made success after sharing her Diet Plan on social media.This Donny girl now has over75,000+ active members, a team of staff, a recipe book on Amazon and thousands of success stories helping others to shed weight and feel great.

Jackie Bailey, owner of Masons Arms, Rum Rooms and Magdalen’s is a creative force and huge asset to Donny’s town centre night-life. These venues aren’t just pubs; Jackie’s vision was to create somewhere people could chill and escape, no bar hopping, just settle and enjoy. And boy has she achieved it. Now the owner of three venues that bring a city style experience to Doncaster’s town centre. In her spare time, she chairs Doncaster’s business forum which brings together business owners and the Council to make the town centre the best it can be.

Zara Jayne Elliot, owner of Wonderland Awaits, is a style advocate for all things wonderful from bygone eras. Wonderland Awaits is an independent vintage clothing boutique in Donny’s shopping centre. In a world of throwaway fashion, Zara’s ethos is refreshing; style over fashion, rescue and reuse, planet-friendly packaging. We especially love the no-judgment policy. The store is fully wheelchair accessible and provides a sanctuary for nursing mothers.

Leading In Government – Women Who Lead

Rachel Butler talks about the fantastic women leading in government for Doncaster, South Yorkshire, and how they have developed on the town.

Words: Rachel Butler

Photography: Warren Draper, John Fuller


Ros Jones, an obvious choice, but not many regions can say they have a female mayor. Ros is one of only four females in the country holding this elected title; that in itself is a huge achievement. From the humble roots as a miners’ daughter with a brain for maths she became an accountant and has been working in local government ever since. Since 2010, Doncaster has been affected by the biggest cuts. Ros Jones has used those accounting skills to pull the town out of a financial black hole. In the past, Doncaster was called the “basket case of the north”.The town has been transformed, and is now being seen as a place to invest and live.

The highest position in our local authority is also held by fellow girl boss JoMiller, CEO of Doncaster Council.There’s no other word for it,Jo is a transformational and inspirational leader. Last year she was named the third most influential person working in local government in Britain and she’s working for us in Donny.Jo has spoken out frequently about equality between sexes, and people of different ethnic and social backgrounds. She’s passionate about promoting “a north that works for everyone”. That’s why we rate her.

You can’t help but get inspired by the work of Lani-Mae Ball, a Councillor in Conisbrough.

At 25, Lani embodies the mantra“if you think you can do a better job, go and give it a go”. Active in the Conisbrough and Denaby areas, Lani is committed to battling the negative social impacts of austerity in the local community and ensuring our young people have provision and positive activities to engage in.She’s one to watch.


Women And Food

Vicky Prior talks about women within the food industry, such as The Hygge Hut, The Jam Horse and Zoey from Guilty Furrie Vegan.

Words: Vicky Prior

Photography: Warren Draper

The Hygge Hut Tucked into Cavendish Court (pronounced hoo-gah), is the perfect place to grab a bacon sandwich to go. It was set up a year ago by Bethany and her mum, who both love Scandinavia food. Following customer feedback, Bethany increased the number of British dishes on the menu, but still keeps a range ofScandinavian inspired dessert sand salads.

The Hygge Hut grows every day, using local produce from KDDavis, Jam Horse and ToppingsPies. Bethany has always been surrounded by strong female role models, and having her mum around helps a lot. She has noticed a lot of female entrepreneurs in food and thinks that, as the feminist movement grows, so will the number of female-led businesses.

Bethany has seen a big rise in artisan baking, which is minimalist but still flavoursome.The Hygge trend is not going anywhere and coffee culture is growing, especially in student areas. Bethany thinks the CulturalQuarter development has helped encourage younger people intoDoncaster, with new businesses opening up to cater to them.

Rachel at the Jam Horse believes women in Doncaster are more entrepreneurial because theCouncil is led by a female team,Jo Miller and Mayor Ros Jones.Local food producers Ajika, Rumba and Caribbean Kitchen are all led by women and regularly collaborate with Rachel. JamHorse recently expanded from a jams and preserves company, selling through markets and local stockists, to having its own shop

on Scot Lane. Business is good with an uptick in orders fromRachel’s existing 40 stockists overChristmas helping out the shop startup. Rachel has been careful to thoroughly research expansion opportunities, with a seemingly dream offer from a large retailer turning out to be a lot of work for very little profit. Support fromBusiness Doncaster and PublicHealth at the council has been excellent. Rachel uses K.D. Davis for all her fruit and veg.

For food trends, Rachel predicts arise in people using black garlic. Kombucha and botanicals are very popular, and the trend for adding alcohol into products, particularly gin, isn’t slowing down. Rachel is developing a lemon curd with gin, and a blood orange and prosecco conserve which I have selflessly volunteered to taste test on behalf of Doncopolitan when it’s ready.

Zoey at Guilty Furrie decided to open a cafe, because of an instinct to care for and feed people. She believes veganism isa lifestyle choice and wanted to introduce a new way of cooking and eating to Doncaster. Her location in Doncaster Market, surrounded by butchers and fishmongers, might seem unusual, her ethos of making something out of nothing and using seasonal produce fits in with the aims of the other market traders. She buys produce from K.D. Davis and also Tasty Flavours, who are nearby neighbours in the market.

Although Zoey hasn’t always been vegan, she has always loved food and was inspired by her mother and the holidays abroad they had together trying different cuisines.Japanese and Asian dishes are being added to the menu to try and get away from the ubiquitous falafel. It took Zoey an incredible one month from signing the lease to opening, with all the equipment and furniture being pre-loved and either cheap or gifted.

Plant based food has been embraced by major retailers, but some meat eaters still don’t think they can eat it too. We agree that labelling dishes as vegan makes them niche and can put meat eaters off from trying tasty food.Zoey thinks overall people will reduce meat in their diet, and so calls her alternative products by the name of the meat they are replacing for familiarity, but hopes to phase this out.


Follow The Hygge Hut HERE

Follow The Jam Horse HERE

Follow Guilt Furrie Vegan HERE

Married and Winging it

Rachel Horne interviews the Doncaster couple David and Donetta, who vlog their daily lives.

Words: David and Donetta

David and Donetta’s are possibly Doncaster’s first family Vloggers, striving to prove life as a young family isn’t all doom and gloom. What started out as a way to document their life to look back on in the future soon became a passion, and is now a full-time business for the couple. Their world captures the spirit of daily life; a cute couple doing their best to be good parents and have a laugh.

Rachel Horne. When did you and Donetta decide to go public with your life? And why?

David. I started a dad blog back in February 2016 as a way to document my journey into parenthood. There didn’t seem to be many dads online sharing their lives so I wanted to add my voice in the hope it might help other dads in my situation. After a year or so, Donetta started to become more and more involved and we fell in love with creating and documenting our family life in particular the aspect of having all of these memories recorded to look back on in years to come. In March 2018, we then decided to go all in with David and Donetta

RH. So tell me more about your original daddo blog? Was that video or written?

D. It’s dadvworld.com and is still running now. It’s now all written content but at the turn of the year it will be maintained for the memories built up only, all new content will be published on davidanddonetta.co.uk. Our David and Donetta YouTube Channel was originally called DadvWorld and all of my original videos are still on the channel now. Having built up a small audience and already publishing several videos we just changed the name.

RH. What’s been you most successful content far?

D. Well we actually laugh about this! On YouTube, it’s a hoover review that has over 20K views. Of all the meaningful videos we’ve tried to create and priceless memories, it’s a review on a cordless hoover that has the most views! On our blog, in terms of numbers, our most read piece has actually been a ’20 Things To Do In Doncaster’ post Donetta wrote. It’s partly why we’ve really taken a serious look at local content. The most successful content we’ve created where I felt extremely proud was definitely working with Everton Football Club my football team

RH. Amazing! You both seem to love what you do and it’s infectious to watch. Do you see it as a brand now are you taking things seriously?

D. Thank you, that’s lovely of you to say! Yes, we’re hoping to create, document, build and grow David and Donetta into a brand for sure. If we can use what we love doing to create a place for others to come for entertainment, advice and motivation then that’s what we’d love to do.

RH. So when did you guys meet?

D. We met on a random Thursday night in Goose, Doncaster just over 7 years ago. I looked at Donetta, she saw me dance and it was a done deal. Donetta came nicely packaged with 2 gorgeous little girls and 364 days after meeting Corben was born! I worked in sales and Donetta in the care sector but once we found blogging and documenting our life we worked as quickly as we could to make it our full time job.

RH. Aww I feel emosh! I think you need to throw an anniversary party at the Goose and make a blog about it. So are you both now working full time on Dave and Donetta?

D. If Goose want to get involved… HA! Yes, we’re both putting our full time efforts into David and Donetta.

RH. I think you should make that happen. Is it scary going completely freelance specially with baba’s at home and how do you create revenue through YouTube?

D. It’s definitely the biggest risk we’ve taken, but we do have a couple of freelance things we can put our hands to. To be fair we don’t mind taking risks to achieve our goals. We make a proportion of our income via brand collaborations and sponsorships.

RH. We need to thank you for coming to Culture Crawl, the video was hilarious and everyone loved it.

D. It was our pleasure, we’re always happy to collaborate with others, especially locally.

RH. It was really hard pulling it all together, I have another job as well as Doncopolitan so Culture Crawl is another thing. Lots of people put in their time for free. When you are making it happen it’s good to see an outsider’s perspective.

D. It was fantastic, everyone involved should be massively proud.

RH Thank you. If it makes people feel inspired and think differently about the town, residents and creatives then we’ve done what we set out to do. What are your 2019 plans for David and Donetta?

Well, in 2019 we’ve set ourselves a HUGE goal of creating a video EVERY SINGLE DAY of 2019! We’re hoping to collaborate with as many people as we can and generally spread some laughs and positivity