Pulham mums mix business with family

They met through attending antenatal classes and toddler groups at a south Norfolk village.But a group of mothers are proving that it is possible to balance childcare with entrepreneurship after setting up their own individual businesses since the turn of the year.

They met through attending antenatal classes and toddler groups at a south Norfolk village.

But a group of mothers are proving that it is possible to balance childcare with entrepreneurship after setting up their own individual businesses since the turn of the year.

Five women from the Pulhams, near Diss, are showing that new enterprise is possible during the recession after creating the start up companies from their own homes.

Since January, Pulham Market and Pulham St Mary have witnessed the opening of an online second hand children's clothing and toy emporium, an interior design service, fancy dress and seamstress shop, and PR company.


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The new wave of businesses in the small Norfolk villages comes after the five mothers, who all have two children each between the ages of six years and 10 months, decided against returning to fulltime work.

The businesswomen yesterday said they hoped to show others that it was possible to turn their stereotypical homemaker roles into cash generators.

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Kerri Worrall, 31, who took voluntary redundancy earlier this year to set up Lantern PR and Design consultancy, said it was a 'phenomenon' to have so many new enterprises in the area.

'The two villages are so unusual. There are so many people in business for themselves. It is a social and vibrant community and it is so easy to make contacts and there is so much support here,' she said.

Donna Eaton and Clare Crane, both 32, set up the Raggy Dolls nearly new clothing and toy website in March, and spend their working time selling their wares at local mother and toddler groups and coffee mornings.

Mrs Crane, a former business development manager, said the Pulham mothers had been sharing advice and expertise about their new business ventures.

'It is has been hard work to set it up, but any new business is. We were quite business driven before we had children and had good careers and it is not easy to drop all of that,' she said.

Mrs Eaton, a former accountant, added that it was nice to be at home with the children and earn a living at the same time.

Tracy McCarron-Row a former tax office manager, set up Gladrags Interiors in January after completing a professional interior design diploma last year. The 38-year-old said it was never too late to learn new skills.

'I think it is so exciting that women are not sitting back and saying that all they can be is a mother. I love being a mum, but in the credit crisis we cannot afford child care and we do not want to be without our kids all the time,' she said.

Fellow mother-of-two Claire Lowe set up Kidz Fancy Pantz in The Gables Yard, Pulham Market, after struggling to find a Halloween costume for her youngest son. She said it was 'fantastic' to work around her family life.

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