It is a well- known fact that Polish people in Britain have a long tradition of having organised Polish Cultural Centres, as well as chains of shops, selling their favourite food products. Recently this type of initiative has extended to developing a very successful net of private and affordable Polish Health Centres, that are opened to all. 

Tooting Medical Centre sent out the following information to their patients and asked to spread the word. 

About Coronavirus 

NOTE: This article is to give information and it is not medical advice. If you have any symptoms of infection with the virus, call 111 – NHS Services.

If you have a runny nose and sputum with a cold, then it cannot be a new type of pneumonia with coronavirus, because infection leading to pneumonia with the coronavirus COVID-19 is a dry cough without a runny nose. This is the easiest first way to determine if you need to worry about being infected with COVID -19 virus. Also, this time, the Wuhan virus is not heat resistant and will be killed at 26-27 degrees Celsius. It is advised, therefore, to drink more hot water to prevent this disease. Drinking hot water is a must. Although this is not a cure, it will be beneficial to your body. Not only that! Drinking hot water is effective in the fight against all viruses. Try not to drink drinks with ice at all, remember – this is now extremely important. Walk more in the sun.   

More tips on combating coronavirus:

   1. It is a fairly large size (the cell diameter is about 400-500 nm), so any ordinary Hygiene Face Mask (not only the N95 function) should be able to filter out this virus. However, when someone infected sneezes in front of you, they spit out infected with the virus sputum, for a distance of about 3 meters (about 10 feet), before sneezed out droplets fall to the ground and no longer stay airborne.


2 When the virus falls onto a metal surface, it will live there for at least 12 hours. Therefore, remember that if you come into contact with any metal surface, it is necessary to wash your hands thoroughly with soap.


3. The virus may remain active on clothing fabric for 6-12 hours. Conventional laundry detergent should kill the    virus. For winter clothes, that do not require daily washing, you can put them in the sun (or on a hot radiator or in the oven) to kill the virus.


Information on the symptoms of pneumonia caused by coronavirus COVID-19:

  1. First, this virus will infect the throat, then there will be a feeling of dryness in the sore throat, which will last 3-4 days.
  1. Then the virus combines with the nasal fluid that drips into the trachea and enters the lungs, causing an infection leading to pneumonia. This process will last from 5 to 6 days.
  1. With pneumonia, there is a high fever and shortness of breath. At the same time, hyperemia of the nasal mucosa is not like the usual congestion of the nasal mucosa – a person will feel as if drowning in water. It is important to IMMEDIATELY consult a doctor, if a person has this feeling, or call 111. 

About prevention: 

  1. The most common way of contracting the virus is through touching people, so try not to touch people and wash hands frequently. The virus can live on hands, on average for 5-10 – up to 30 minutes, but in these 5-10-30 minutes, a lot can happen (a person can unwittingly rub his/her eyes or runny nose). 
  1. Beside frequent hand washing, it is highly advisable and beneficial to rinse the throat with Betadine, to eliminate or minimise germs that are still in the throat (before they start dripping into the lungs), as well as to rinse the nose in the nostrils. Be very careful at all times and drink as much water as possible.

“There is no evidence that hot drinks will protect against viral infections, says Ron Eccles, an expert in respiratory diseases at Cardiff University in the UK and former director of the Common Cold Centre.

According to WHO it is 56 (°C) that kills SARS – coronavirus.

The more explanation we have how COVID-19 can infect and how to prevent such infection the better we can cope.

Reading time: 3 min


Nicolaus Copernicus

Our mental attitudes and the perception of the world have been changing throughout history. Initially, human attention was directed to the sky. People looked up to the sky to estimate the time and to tell which way to go when travelling. Astronomers and astrologers looked to the sky not only to tell time and direction, but also to observe the world and life. People had a geocentric perception of the world which placed the Earth and human beings at the centre of the Universe.

When the clock was invented, along with roads, road signs and maps, the human mind was freed from paying attention to the sky during the course of an ordinary day. Today many of us have hardly any of the detailed knowledge about the sky that was so necessary in the past.

By the fifteenth century, humanity was ready for a higher truth, and the Polish astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus managed to establish this truth about the structure of the world. Significantly, he managed to do so with the use of a very few simple instruments and only his naked eye. His inspiration, natural ability to observe and education as well as the help of a few clever pieces of equipment allowed him to observe the real structure of the world.



Triquetrum – instrument for Astrometry ( reconstruction)

Kwadrant (reconstruction)











Nicolaus Copernicus’s magnum opus was De revolutionibus orbium coelestium (“The Revolutions of the Heavenly Bodies”)and it  was a success. Despite the difficulties with censorship at the time, it was published in 1543 in an edition of 500 copies, and it made publicly available the heliocentric model of the universe as the real structure of the world.

This presented new challenges for the human mind, which had to change from knowing and visualising the Earth as the centre of the universe to being able to acknowledge and visualise that the Earth spins around the Sun. Today this seems quite obvious to us, but at the time it must have been a disturbing and difficult thing to do.

As a natural philosopher, Nicolaus Copernicus successfully accomplished great things in his beloved field of astronomy, leaving us a new awareness of the universe. His accomplishment was built on solid ground.

He expresses this in his writings:

“What is however more beautiful over the sky, over the gatherings of all the beauties to which words like ‘coelum’ and ‘mundus’ itself point out, of which one means purity and the ornament and the other the ingenious canopy of heavens, by many philosophers for its extraordinariness ‘a visible divinity’ have been named.

If we want to value natural philosophies according to the value of the subject of interest, the first place will go to what some call astronomy, others astrology, and many of the ancients have called the peak of mathematical science. This, standing in the first place of liberated natural philosophies, is worthy of a noble thinking man.”

“It is a godly, rather than a manly ability.”

“From among many numerous and various natural sciences and arts that enrich the human mind, according to my opinion, those above all deserve commitment and devotion with one’s whole strength that follow the most beautiful and worthy matters. Such are the natural sciences, whose subjects are the wonderful revolutions of the world, the motions of the planets, their sizes and distances, their sunrises and their sunsets and the reasons of all other phenomena observed on the sky that explain the whole structure of the world.”

“Isn’t it the most beautiful and most lofty praise, worthy of the most poetic verses – this great natural science?”

“The destiny, the purpose of all of the pretty sciences is to draw human thought away from error and towards the good. Astronomy, along with its inexpressible attraction for the mind, more successfully than any other science can achieve that purpose.”

“For which of the investigators will the sight of those things, so splendidly arranged by God’s providence and with careful thinking over of them and getting used to them, not enkindle virtue and end with admiration for the Creator of the Universe, in which everything good and all happiness is contained?”

Nicolaus Copernicus knew what ‘reality’ meant, was courageous and very cautious in what he did, and was guided throughout his career by his inspiration, maturity and the truth about life. Of those who presented their theories before him on unjustified foundations Copernicus wrote:

“They also have not observed, nor have they concluded from their assumptions the main and, yes, the most important subject of what the real structure of the world is and the certain order of the arrangements of its parts.

From that point of view, one could compare them to one who, out of various paintings, taking hands, head and other parts of the body – beautifully painted admittedly – but not belonging to one body, and joined and put them together. These parts not suiting each other by any means and not by any measure, they would thus present us with more of a monster than a human form.

So then, in the way of argument that they describe as a method, we see them either leaving out what is necessary or accepting what is foreign to the subject and does not belong to it. And exactly this would not have happened, if they had kept to the same unchanged laws. Because if the laws they used were not mistaken, everything that comes about by keeping to them would turn out to be the truth without fail.”

Nicolaus Copernicus was known as an astronomer, mathematician, lawyer, physician, writer, translator and economist. His work Modus cudendi monetae (“The Way to Strike Coin”), written and published in 1519, observed a monetary law which states: ‘Bad money tends to push out good money from circulation’. He also explained the meaning of ‘nominal value’. Today this law is known as Gresham’s law or as the Gresham–Copernicus law.

“A coin loses its value particularly due to its great increase in numbers. That is, when such a great quantity of silver is turned into coin that people chase more after the mass of the silver than they need the coin and when it is seen in the melting of the coin a greater gain.

The value of the coin drops for various reasons: either because of the lack of the material itself, when… there is more than there should be… of copper, or because of the lack of the appropriate weight, despite the fair share of copper, or in the end for both of these reasons.”

When the value of the coin circulating at the time dropped and trade become difficult, Copernicus wrote: ‘But which one of the foreign traders would like to exchange their goods for a copper coin? Which one of ours would finally get goods in exchange for such coinage?’

The great astronomer was a highly educated man with many talents, and after closer acquaintance with his work, many of us might be affected in different aspects of life in various ways. For me, as Copernicus also said that in astronomy the sky sometimes needs to be observed throughout the generations before one can arrive at knowledge and conclusions, I cannot resist comparing the observation of the life and the world through the observation of the sky to that of a  present way of studying the world and human life by observing genes and genetic codes. In light of Copernicus’s opinions quoted above, it puzzles me how quickly the genetic knowledge about our bodies’ fundamental structures has progressed in our lifetime, and how the practice of genetic modification through genetic engineering and editing has appeared after a relatively short time. It takes years of observing the sky to spot the patterns of astronomical phenomena, and I wonder how many phenomena essential to our life on the genetic level,which are also subjects to the sky and time, are being missed or disturbed by the great hurry of genetic scientists.



Hartleb Kazimierz “Mikołaj Kopernik” Nakładem Uniwersytetu Mikołaja Kopernika, Toruń  1948

Rybka Eugeniusz,Rybka Przemysław”Mikołaj Kopernik i Jego Nauka” Warszawa 1953

Reading time: 7 min

2019 is a new era for fighting climate change. Recent headlines are telling us that we have 12 years to prevent the predicted climate change catastrophes. Alongside this, the UN reports that if the rate of waste production continues, by 2050 our oceans will carry more plastics than fish. These astonishing facts have instilled shock and promoted a new appetite for Green Consumerism.

Green Consumerism is a movement which allows consumers to take responsibility for their buying-power and address environmental issues through opting for more environmentally friendly solutions. Because of this, people are now beginning to ditch their ‘go-to’ beauty products for plastic-free, cruelty-free and more organic based products in the fight towards combatting our impact on the planet. Despite challenges, we are now living in a more conscious society, so the products available are growing and our journey towards Green Consumerism is flourishing. The appeal of non-toxic, sustainable ingredients and brands with missions to limit waste has grown, with more of us joining the fight against climate change. So, for those who have yet to start the journey or want to gain ideas, you probably want to know your options.

One global brand leading the way is Aveda; a botanical hair and skincare brand, with stores in London.


Another brand pioneering this change is Lush, a UK based company with stores in London.Their priority is held in packaging. This focus is important, with ‘Zero Waste Week’ statistics suggesting that the beauty sector alone contributes over 142 billion units of packaging per year, most ending up in landfill or in our oceans. Aveda, however, is making a change. They were the first beauty company to use 100% post-consumer recycled PET plastic and are now turning their eye to more eco-friendly options; bioplastics. This material has similar properties to plastic, however, is derived primarily from sugarcane rather than petrochemical-derived plastics, meaning it is more sustainable and better for the environment.


They have an unwavering commitment to sustainable packaging, claiming they save 3 million plastic bottles from landfill with their shampoo bars which last 3 times longer than an average liquid bottle. The shampoo bars are tiny too, taking up to 15 times less space than one bottle of liquid shampoo, meaning that transportation in lorries to stores nationwide produces less CO2 emissions. As a space saving size, it is also perfect for those who travel.


As for the product and ingredients within, this can be a little more challenging to get right. Most of us are more conscious about what we use, and so we are on the hunt for sustainable, toxic-free and organic products. However, the challenge comes with the ingredients being less stable and the difficulties changing them. Take Vitamin C for example, the popular skin revising ingredient used in a collection of cosmetic items, can destabilise, rendering it useless if it isn’t packaged properly. However, the new skincare brand, Privise, have found the solution. By adding two new vitamins to the product, Vitamin B5 and B3, they were able to stabilise Vitamin C and also create a 2-in-1 product, which has the added benefit of saving packaging throughout the supply chain. Unfortunately, Privise is a Scandinavian based company and ordering products online for UK shipping doesn’t seem wholly appealing for eco-warriors. Despite this, the development in altering the ingredients in products is essential for promoting environmentally friendly options and we hope that these initiatives become fostered in UK-based companies.

Independent companies are also trying their shot at eco beauty products. One such online-based company aiming to increase accessibility of eco beauty is

Real and Natural

They offer AVA Laboratories of Poland beauty products, alongside beauty care accessories, all of which are eco-certified. Their aim is to provide products that are locally and naturally sourced, protecting nature whilst utilising its’ benefits for the beauty industry. They also hope to aid the fight against climate change by promoting organic products with minimum environmental pollution.

Researching the options available to us takes time, and despite the growing market for products which promise waste reduction and better ingredients, the challenge of finding suitable items remains. My hope for the future is the continued development of beauty products which make plastic-free, cruelty-free and toxin-free living as accessible as the items we commonly see stocked in supermarkets and cosmetic stores today. There is hope for our planet and beauty industry, but only if we, as the consumers, promote the change

Reading time: 3 min

I am a beauty therapist with many years of experience. I obtained my education as an aesthetician and electrologist from the prestigious London Institute of Beauty Culture in 1981.

My first steps as a beauty therapist were equipped with the newly obtained knowledge about collagen and elastin, that once you break up, damage your precious protein network found in the skin, you are done.

There were no creams, potions, lotions, electrical machines or other methods in the world that would repair that type of damage. That awareness was daunting.

General knowledge also told us that from around 25 years of age our treasured network of collagen and elastin gradually deteriorated year by year. Collagen gives structure to skin, bones and muscles and all other connective tissue and can be found in blood, and elastin allows body’s tissues to return to their shape after stretching or contracting.

Prospect of a Pending Scare and No Return Journey

In 1980 Miriam Stoppard, dermatologist, researcher and  the general editor of The Face and Body Book, made it plain:” No substance or process yet known to science can restore permanently the proteins, fats and moisture that provide supple support for the skin, or do anything to repair the fractures that develop in the collagen within the dermis as the body grows older.”

On collagen in the dermis she wrote: “Through this framework runs a network of nerves, nerve endings and blood vessels. In young healthy skin, collagen is arranged in parallel bundles that lie alongside each other and have the ability to stretch and then resume their original shape. They give young skin its suppleness, smoothness and plumpness. As we get older, the integrity of collagen bundles is lost, the fibres split, the bundles break up and the parallel arrangement disintegrates. The architecture of the skin crumbles; it sags, wrinkles and becomes thin. These signs of age cannot be prevented and can be removed only by cosmetic surgery, skin peeling or dermabrasion.”

On facial massage Miriam Stoppard wrote: “The belief that the procedure will improve the skin as well as make you feel more relaxed is unjustified.”

The Trick of Being Systematic and Regular

Back in the 1980’s when the book was written I was young and newly qualified. I believed and respected what I was taught in my beauty school. I loved all beauty procedures and practicing them was a way of life.

For me initially it was difficult to establish if the beauty treatments I delivered to clients were successful or not. My clients liked them. However, I did not see the immediate improvements of the treated skin, unless the problem was dehydration or acne. Nevertheless, I still recommended a range of good Sothys cream products (which back then were very eco-packed) to prevent or possibly delay any daunting prospects.

I did the same for myself. Having young skin then it was difficult to pin point how effective these electrical and cream treatments were.

Only in my later age I have discovered what a difference it makes to use a good cream and to practice regular face massage.

The 1980s Daunting Knowledge about Deteriorating Collagen Has Gone Away Like a Bad Dream

Compering to the 1980s science nowadays is teaching us different things about collagen. It is teaching us that regularly stimulating skin with an appropriate massage technique not only protects collagen and elastin network, but also helps the skin to produce it. Eating the right food and exercising helps to protect, maintain and even to create the conditions for producing it again. Suddenly, the disheartening prospects of uncontrolled wrinkling and sagging skin has gone away like a bad dream.

Massaging, Massaging, Massaging

As a beauty therapist I can confirm that this is absolutely true. Having regular facials and body massages, among other benefits, keeps skin looking younger and healthier.

The rejuvenating and restoring salon massage needs to be followed by a regular home routine doing hand massages or with the help of non- intrusive massaging tools and plenty of oils and creams.

The tools I recommend are the environmentally friendly options of sponges, brushes, face cloths, rollers, jade stones and Chinese facial and body cups.

The massage needs to be gentle and done regularly.

Suitable regular facial and body exercises as well as a good nutritious diet are also recommended.

When it comes to maintaining younger looking skin even Miriam Stoppard will agree that times have changed for the better for us all.

She always promoted natural beauty even when in her research she could not see any results in skin improvement due to beauty therapy care.

Nowadays we know that the trick to looking younger lies in simple ways. We know now that just by repeatedly massaging the skin with good creams and oils *, we help to maintain and restore lost collagen. Naturally obtained results like this are satisfactory, no sagging skin and definitely less wrinkles. Natural good looks give you confidence.

Being regular and systematic is the best and the most effective trick ever in beauty care. It works.

In the past doing facial massages every day was over the top. Today it is a normal thing to do.



* Other professionals who recognise benefits of regular massage:

Dr Gantsho: practical effects confirm results of regular massaging

Akane Miyaji, Kaori Sugimori, Naoyuki Hayashi: “ Short and long term effects of using a facial massage roller on facial skin blood flow and vascular reactivity.” Complementary Therapies in Medicine, 2018: 41:271 DO1 :10.1016/j.ctim.2018.09.


Reading time: 4 min

Sally Sumner, the founder and director of The Ballet Academy Weybridge offered us another charming performance “The Magic Toy Shop”. The show took place on 30th and 31st March,2019 at Addlestone Community Theatre.

Sally, when writing the story for the show was inspired by ballet “The Fairy Doll” She also choreographed the dancing.

The dancers’ ages ranged between 5 years and 58 years old. The show took place in the Community Theatre and it was a proper occasion. The theatre itself offered really good and comfortable facilities.

At the entrance to the theatre there was an opportunity to purchase, on the door, both tickets and a programme for the show.

After being comfortably seated, the lights went down, the curtains opened and “The Magic Toy Shop “ballet began.

“ ‘Top Toys’ was not your usual toyshop. It was owned by an incredibly talented toymaker called Mr. William Whirring. He specialised in making mechanical dolls. Anyone who was anyone in town wanted to own one of his creations.”

The dancers appeared one by one as many different dolls from the shop. Each dancer wore a stage make-up  and specially designed beautiful, colourful costume. Costumes were designed by Sally Sumner and fairy doll costumes were produced and designed  by Athalie Tar. Everything was fit for a West End show.

Photography Karl Te Aika

Each individual dancer as well as groups of dancers performed in front of an audience full of parents and family friends.

When the dancers appeared one by one my attention was grabbed. I was particularly charmed by the dancers’ beautiful arm movements. That made me realise, that I really was watching a proper ballet show.

Photography Karl Te Aika

The ballet dancers’ movements and communication with each other throughout the show were very expressive and able to tell the story of the show.

I found Sally’s choreography very interesting and enjoyable while being well suited to each individual dancer’s ability.

Photography Karl Te Aika

The ballerinas in the show were serious about their dancing all the way through. There were also a lot of smiles and there was a lot of joyfulness shining through to the audience.

Photography Karl Te Aika

The music by Josef Bayer and Léo Delibes created a special mood and an air of sophistication.

Lacey Tarr as the Fairy Doll; Photography Karl Te Aika

Though the story and music were from the past, we all somehow felt everything was happening then and there at that moment.

The various scenes included a broken doll, an Austrian doll, a mama poppa doll, a  sailor’s doll, a circus doll, a fairy doll, midnight magic dancing dolls, drumming bunnies, toy soldiers, Chinese dolls, Japanese dolls, Spanish dolls all creating great variety and providing true high-quality entertainment.

Photography Karl Te Aika

Amazingly good choreography delivered by the able, confident and talented and well prepared dancers made the show pleasingly spectacular and one to remember.

Sally Sumner and The Ballet Academy dancers; Photography Karl Te Aika

All the dancers of The Ballet Academy, young and older seemed to master the arm movements to the point where they shone and touched us with their beauty.

I definitely want to come and see another show by the dancers of The Ballet Academy Weybridge.

Reading time: 2 min
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