Margaret Miles-Bramwell, OBE HonMUniv FRSA
Slimming World is the most advanced slimming organisation in the UK. It was founded in 1969 by Margaret Miles-Bramwell, who remains the driving force behind the company to this day. With the experience of a lifetime’s weight problem, it is her enthusiasm and unique vision that has made the Company so successful.
In 2009 we celebrated our 40th Anniversary and during those four fabulous decades, over 5 million slimmers attended our groups and lost a total of 60 million pounds. There are now over 10,000 groups held weekly on a nationwide basis via a network of around 3,500 Slimming World trained Consultants.
Awards and accolades
In 1997, Slimming World became the first slimming organisation to qualify for the Investors in People Award, an award that has been retained ever since. Unlike many companies, our main annual investment is not in marketing. Our investment is in training great people to deliver a service to members that’s second-to-none. Slimming World Consultants receive specific training in dietary aspects and the role of physical activity in weight control. The highly developed training focuses on facilitating behaviour change in a group environment, acknowledged by experts as being the most effective way to support long-term weight management.
Slimming World was awarded 6th Best Company to Work For by the Sunday Times in 2004, achieving Best for Leadership and Top 3 for Giving Something Back and retained its Top 100 position for three consecutive years. In 2007, we received the prestigious three star Best Companies award, based on the elite ‘Michelin’ style star rating.
Slimming World founder and Chairman, Margaret Miles-Bramwell was honoured with an OBE in the 2009 Queen’s Birthday Honours List for services to the community in Derbyshire and to the field of weight management. Margaret was also awarded an Honorary Degree of Master of the University from the University of Derby in 2010, recognising her remarkable achievement in founding and establishing a Derbyshire company which has contributed to the improved health, happiness and well-being of large numbers of people in the region and nationally.
Charity work and fundraising
SMILES, Slimming World's own charitable foundation, was born in 1997. SMILES stands for Slimmers Making It a Little Easier for Someone, and each year a special charity is chosen to benefit from the enormous generosity of our members, Consultants and Head Office staff. So far, SMILES has raised £3.7 million for worthwhile causes, most recently for Cancer Research UK and the Marie Keating Foundation. You can read more about Slimming World’s charity here...
Pioneering work to support more people in managing their weight
From 2001 to 2003, Slimming World worked in collaboration with Greater Derby Primary Care Trust to investigate the feasibility of running ‘Slimming on Referral’ schemes. The scheme yielded excellent results and in Autumn 2003, Slimming World on Referral was launched to GPs and Primary Care Teams as an alternative to prescribing weight loss medication and has since been adopted by Primary Care Trusts throughout the UK.
Slimming World was the first slimming organisation to offer young people free group membership when it launched Family Affair in January 2006. Adolescents aged between 11 and 15 can attend group for free if they are accompanied by a fee-paying parent or guardian, and have the support of their GP or nurse. To date more than 40,000 young people across the country have learned to develop a healthier lifestyle with Slimming World.
Slimming World is the only national weight management organisation in the UK which continues to provide support to members when they become pregnant – a time when women often feel vulnerable and unsure about the way to manage their weight. We work with the Royal College of Midwives in a unique partnership to support pregnant women and breastfeeding mums in managing their weight.
Slimming World invests tens of thousands of pounds in research into weight management, and is currently involved in the DIOGENES European Research Study, the biggest pan-European obesity research project ever undertaken.
Support and services to members
During January 1998, Slimming World magazine was launched and sold in-house to members. It was a runaway success and the magazine went on to newsstands right across the country in January 1999 where it immediately became a leading diet magazine with sales in excess of 260,000. Fourteen years on and it continues to hold its number one position. Slimming World magazine is currently one of the top 10 actively purchased magazines in the UK.
In January 2004, Lifeline Online, an exclusive members-only website, was introduced providing Slimming World members with a free, 24/7 support, motivation and inspiration resource. It was followed shortly by Slimming World’s bodyOptimise, renamed Slimming World Online in 2011 — an online weight loss programme to help those people who can’t get to a warm and friendly Slimming World group.
Our Head Office and purpose-built conference centre, where all our Consultants are trained, is in Alfreton, Derbyshire – just a few miles from where the company started, over 43 years ago.
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