Monday, 28 December 2009

Early Learning Centre

During the Christmas period I purchased the most fantastic toy from the Early Learning Centre in Lincoln. It was called a 'morphibians shark' and was basically a remote controlled car. It was described on the box as 'easy to use full functioning remote control', 'with bright LED headlights' and 'a vehicle that can drive anywhere through puddles, mud and grass. Designed to perform on land and water'. Well, this car really lives up to its billing. What's more it is virtually indestructible and not small in stature. The recommended age is 3 years+ and it requires 2xAAA batteries for the handset plus 3xAA batteries for the car, not included but can be purchased with the car and according to reviews last a long time. At £20 this toy is amazing value for money. Warning to children: don't let daddy get hold of it... you'll never get it back! If you would like to know the history of the early Learning Centre read on..........

The Early Learning Centre is a British chain of shops selling toys for very young children. Originally set up as a mail order company in 1974 and was always based near Swindon; by 1980 it had ten shops; and it has grown to include 215 shops in the UK and over 80 in 19 other countries such as Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Canada and Australia. In addition, their toys are available in selected Denenhams, Boots and Sainsbury's. The company has also sold their products via their website (link below) since 2001. In October 2005, the site was updated by Tobias & Tobias. In 2003 it won the New Media Age Best Retail Website Award. In the 1980s ELC opened a number of "nursery stores" which sold equipment such as pushchairs and cots. The chain had stores in the United States until the early 1990s. Over 80% of products sold are own brand, being designed at a research centre in Hong Kong.
John Menzies rescued Early Learning Centre in 1985. Sales struggled in the late 1990s. After some years, the company's board of directors led by Mike France, bought the company back in October 2001 for £30m, being backed by 3i, before selling it to Tim Waterstone (who founded Waterstones (bookstores) under the name Eagle Retail Investments for £62m in April 2004 and he joined it with his Daisy & Tom chain of shops within the "Chelsea Stores Group". More recently, Early Learning Centre was purchased by Mothercare in June 2007 for £85m from Chelsea Stores Holdings. Mothercare have continued to expand the high street presence of ELC by opening additional stores; mainly as concessions within over 100 existing Mothercare stores.
Product range
They are known for selling products which use wood such as plywood and Chinese Maple and other non-plastic materials as well as top quality plastics, which are designed to be educational, and which are play tested toys.

Today's Smile

Oh well, back to the job centre tomorrow!

Who Am I?

Today's Who Am I? puzzle requires you to work out who our mystery celebrity is from the 10 clues listed below.

01 I was born 1 October 1964.
02 My place of birth was Woking, Surrey.
03 I was educated at Cranbrook School. Kent.
04 I gained a medical degree at St George's Hospital Medical School, University of London.
05 I am married to illustrator Magda Archer.
06 In 2006 I was a victim of identity theft and had £280,000 stolen from my bank account.
07 I have had several books published, three of which were, Flight from Deathrow (2002), Tim the Tiny Horse (2006) and The Further Adventures of the Queen Mum (2007).
08 In 2003, I was listed in the Observer as one of the 50 funniest acts in British Comedy.
09 In 2008, I won two BAFTAS and another in 2009 for best Entertainment Performance.
10 I provide the voice-over for You've Been Framed.

Any ideas who this might be?

Funny Signs

The Best Put Down Line Ever

Major General Peter Cosgrove is an 'Australian treasure!'

General Cosgrove was interviewed on the radio recently. Read his reply to the lady who interviewed him concerning guns and children. Regardless of how you feel about gun laws you've got to love this! This is one of the best comeback lines of all time. It is a portion of an ABC radio interview between a female broadcaster and General Cosgrove who was about to sponsor a Boy Scout Troop visiting his military Headquarters.

FEMALE INTERVIEWER: So, General Cosgrove, what things are you going to teach these young boys when they visit your base?
GENERAL COSGROVE: We're going to teach them climbing, canoeing, archery and shooting.
FEMALE INTERVIEWER: Shooting! That's a bit irresponsible, isn't it?
GENERAL COSGROVE: I don't see why, they'll be properly supervised on the rifle range.
FEMALE INTERVIEWER: Don't you admit that this is a terribly dangerous activity to be teaching children?
GENERAL COSGROVE: I don't see how. We will be teaching them proper rifle discipline before they even touch a firearm.
FEMALE INTERVIEWER: But you're equipping them to become violent killers.
GENERAL COSGROVE: Well, Ma'am, you're equipped to be a prostitute, but you're not one, are you?

The radio cast went silent for 46 seconds and when it returned, the interview was over.