It's all about Suffolk: Lesley Dolphin

PUBLISHED: 00:38 21 March 2012 | UPDATED: 21:12 20 February 2013

It's all about Suffolk: Lesley Dolphin

It's all about Suffolk: Lesley Dolphin

Who said lots of choice was a good thing?

Who said lots of choice was a good thing?

I'verealised why our lives are so stressful and busy we have too much choice.

From the minute we wake up we have to make selections. Bath or a shower? Use the lovely rose scented soap or the refreshing shower gel?

While you munch your favourite breakfast cereal (nutty, puffed or crackles?) with milk (skimmed, semi skimmed or full fat?), you can read the newspaper of your choice actually, no choice there, the East Anglian Daily Times, of course. And the day has only just begun!

My parents were about to get married when the Queen began her reign 60 years ago. Life was so much simpler then. They didnt have to decide which electricity or gas provider to use, they could talk to a bank manager for advice and they bought their groceries from the local shops.

I was at the supermarket last week and standing in front of the loo paper, agonising over which was the most ethical. A bumper pack of quilted white or the recycled, less comfortable blue? I know which Mark prefers but perhaps he has a more tender posterior than mine.

These days Im not only armed with a selection of reusable bags, I also take a calculator. I spend ages trying to work out which washing powder or liquid is the best buy. Its not just the brand but which is the most economical? Is it the biggest, or the 2-for-1 or the one thats on offer? Maths was never my strong point and trying to work out the price per wash is nigh on impossible.

Whatever you need to buy there are literally dozens of choices. Our American friends cant believe the huge variety of crisps we have here. Considering the USA is the home of the chip it says something about us that we Brits have more flavours. Take air fresheners count how many different products are on sale. They come in all shapes, colours and sizes with sensors and diffusers and pongs with exotic names like Relaxing Zen.

"I know which loo roll Mark prefers but perhaps his is a more tender posterior than mine"

I know Im lucky to have all these choices but do we really need so many? Sometimes I just want to buy a bog standard product. I now know why it takes me so long to do my shopping. At least thats what Ill tell Mark.


m really pleased Suffolk magazine has decided to make 2012 the year of the village. Ive been involved in the judging of the Village of the Year competition for the past few years and am always impressed with what is happening in our communities. We like to celebrate businesses on my afternoon show with a feature called Made in Suffolk and there is more going on than you may think.

Would you believe that Europes biggest sushi making factory is based in the heart of our county near Stowmarket? Production goes on 24 hours a day and they make the little packs you can buy for lunch in the supermarket (more choice!).

In Stonham Parva theres a business that specialises in in-flight entertainment and in Framlingham, theres a company that makes the casing for fibre-optic cabling. We all want extra fast broadband in Suffolk and this company hopes well buy it. It took several years for the former BT boffins to come up with their clever invention.

When you watch the Olympics on TV this summer you must make a special note to admire the football and hockey goals and nets because theyre made in Lowestoft. In the 1950s Ron Harrod employed workers from the dwindling fishing industry to make garden netting and soon diversified into sports equipment.

Last week I spoke to the boss of a family business near Bury St Edmunds where they make the illuminated traffic bollards that make sure you keep left at traffic junctions. Dont have an accident but next time you pass one give it an extra look as it was probably one made in Suffolk.

Finally, one I just love. Youll have used vending machines for cigarettes and chocolate but what about for maggots? Terry Read came up with the idea for Mag It after hed had a drink or two. He believes its the only company of its kind in the world.

So let me know whats going on in your bit of the county and next time someone asks where Suffolk is you can tell them were much more than just that lump on the side of the UK map.

Listen to Lesley 12.30-4pm weekdays on BBC Radio Suffolk

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