Good News Story for HOOP UK Family

Manchester Evening News has taken a particular interest in ‘our Allie’, the initial inspiration for HOOP UK. We love stories like this to reach the press. It shows the determination of Allie which in turn is a massive inspiration to so many other people.

Allie continues to make great progress with her personal trainer, Andy.

Thanks MEN! Full story here.

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HOOP UK is born

Allie McCormack was bullied at school for being overweight. Her life was miserable. Her parents were distraught beyond belief. Allie’s Mum Lesley worked tirelessly to find the help and support that she needed to, in turn, help her youngest daughter. The frustration was immense but Lesley refused to give up.

To the detriment of her own health, Lesley took her plight to the GP, the local PCT and even Downing Street, but she kept coming up against brick walls which just added to her panic attacks and anxiety.

Finally, Lesley discovered a summer camp that had been created by Professor Paul Gately, now a family friend and supporter of Lesley’s work with HOOP UK.

Allie’s family managed to raise the funds allowing her to attend this life changing summer camp.

The picture below is how Allie is now – just like any other teenager. She is fit, healthy and happy. Her regular trips to the local gym pay tribute to that!

But not all parents can afford the fee, which at the time was £3500. Lesley decided that somehow she had to help. That was when she created HOOP UK.

HOOP UK started as a support group on Facebook but has now gone on to be a fully fledged organisation. A company limited by guarantee, HOOP UK is applying for charitable status and will be raising money to help children like Allie.

It will also be working with professional organsiations to bring awareness to the general public about how obesity can destroy lives and where help can be found.

If you would like to get involved with HOOP, contact us here.

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HOOP UK Board Announced

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The Directors of HOOP UK Limited are delighted to announced their preliminary Board of Individuals who are working with the organisation bringing their expertise to the table.

Founding Director, Lesley McCormack said.

‘I am so thrilled that HOOP UK is now taking shape and has some wonderful people to support my vision and take the company forward so that we can really make a difference to people’s lives.’

Dr Chris Steel, Resident Doctor on ITV This Morning has agreed to act as HOOP UK’s Patron offering credibility to a fledgling project with big ideas.

Charlie Walduck and Lee Veasey are fantastic examples of what can be achieved in weight loss with the right mentality, education and support. As Ambassadors to HOOP UK, they will be working hard to get the message out there.

HOOP UK is currently applying for Charitable Status which would not be possible without the support of our Founder Trustees, Gillie Sutherland, Louise Foster-Spanner and Chris Hillary.

Director Jill Tipping said

The first steps are now in place to bring HOOP UK fully to life. Being part of this great team of inspirational people is exciting and a privilege. The journey now begins.

HOOP UK Limited is a company limited by guarantee and was incorporated on June 11th 2012.

For full details of the HOOP UK Team – click here




Lesley McCormack

Lesley is the beating heart of HOOP UK and has been working over the past couple of years to bring awareness to the issues that surround weight problems and obesity.

Her passion was ignited when she looked for much needed help for her youngest daughter Allie, who was struggling with her weight. Lesley was appalled at the lack of support for Allie and for herself as a parent.

Allie is now enjoying a healthy lifestyle at a normal weight. Lesley wants other parents and children to benefit from the resources and facilities that she was eventually able to secure for Allie.

Jill Tipping HOOP  

Jill Tipping

Jill is supporting Lesley on her mission by bringing business strategy and advice to the company. Jill is also a Director of Xposure Limited which works with companies to enhance their place in the market through strategically placed Social Media platforms and brand positioning.

Jill has experience in setting up charitable ventures and is also bringing financial expertise to the team.

Support to the Directors




Nicola Veasey – Assistant to the Directors

Nicola, wife of our ambassador Lee, is an Infant School Teacher in Derbyshire. She has struggled with her weight all of her life, and is currently on her own weight loss journey. She is passionate about helping others, particularly the next generation. As the right hand woman on the admin front, Nicola will help with the paperwork involved with HOOP UK and manage administration duties involved to support Lesley and Jill.




Lynne Potter – Head of Support

Lynne is disabled, has issues with obesity and needed both knee and hip replacements. For surgeons to consider operating she was told her BMI needed to be reduced. For Lynne this meant finding a way to lose 7 stone whilst confined to a wheelchair and her bed. Having the support of Dr Chris and Charlie Walduck, she began to see a way forward and 9 months ago was introduced to Lesley and to HOOP UK. She became an instant hit with us all.

Lynne has now lost 7 ½ stone. She has had 1 knee replaced has begun walking short distances and even climbing stairs. She is our inspiration and we are proud that she agreed to become our Head of Support!


HOOP UK is delighted to announce the people behind the scenes who have offered their time and support in helping HOOP UK on the road towards its objectives. Thank you to all of them!


Jessie Patron


Jessie Pavelka

Texas born Jessie has been seen on our screens in the UK presenting Sky TV Obese: A Year to Save my Life. Series 2 was be screened in 2013.

Jessie is keen to support HOOP UK as his passion is to encourage and educate individuals in order for them to lose weight and lead healthy and happy lives.

HOOP UK is thrilled that Jessie has not only agreed to become our Patron but that he has been able to get involved at the early stage, increasing awareness and fund raising opportunities.



Dr Chris Steele MBE

Dr Chris is the resident doctor on ITV’s This Morning programme, having originally appeared on the very first show 24 years ago.  He has now retired as a GP, but is doing lots of writing and loves educating people about medical matters.  Qualifying as a doctor in 1968 he worked as a GP in South Manchester and became an international expert in smoking cessation and nicotine addiction.

HOOP UK is proud to have him as their Patron.




Lee Veasey

In 2010 Lee weighed over 34 stone. His life was in danger. He was lucky enough to be accepted on to the Sky TV programme, Obese: A Year to Save my Life. It was there that he met the amazing Jessie Pavelka and personal trainer Claire, who coached him throughout 12 months and taught him how to lose weight, keep fit and maintain a healthy lifestyle, losing 13.5 stone.

Lee is a Founder of HOOP UK and works as an ambassador promoting well being and supporting others along their own personal journeys.





Charlie Walduck

Charlie has battled with his weight and depression all his life.  In 2003 his weight was in excess of 50 stones and, fearing for his life, a work colleague wrote to ITV’s This Morning programme. With the help of Dr Chris Steele MBE, Charlie lost over 35 stones without medication or surgery.  He lost 20 stones in one year – a UK record and This Morning had its biggest viewer response in its entire history.

Charlie continues to battle his weight and openly admits he still has spells of overeating – it was his honesty on screen that made him such a hit with viewers.  Charlie has travelled the world telling his story and has appeared on numerous TV programmes.  Charlie is a published author, radio presenter and writer.

Charlie is delighted to be involved with HOOP UK and hopes to use his experience to help others.

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Sarah Le Brocq

Sarah appeared on the Sky Living TV programme, Fat: The Fight of my Life in 2013. It was there that she met Jessie Pavelka and personal trainer Valentine Rawat, who mentored Sarah and helped her to completely change her life. Sarah lost 8 and a half stones on the programme and went from a life of no exercise to amazingly completing an Olympic Triathlon as part of her journey. Sarah has inspired so many people already through her programme and would like to use her experiences to help others on similar journeys.

Sarah is delighted to be involved with HOOP UK.




Louise Foster Spanner  

Louise Foster-Spanner

Louise works as a deputy head in a small primary school in Redcar. She believes passionately that education is one of the key elements when fighting the battle against obesity . Louise is journeying along the path of losing weight herself and understands the problems. She finds it is about making informed and educated choices.

In HOOP UK Louise has a group of people who are willing to share and learn from each other’s knowledge. As a wife and mum she knows the pressures of juggling a career and household, whilst also cooking healthy nutritious meals is not always easy and she has looked to HOOP UK for ideas and support and found them in abundance



Chris Hillary

Chris owns Fitness Frenzi and holds Zumba® Fitness classes throughout Kent.

He has struggled with weight issues himself throughout his life and so undertands the physical and emotional issues that people can be faced with. Many of his members have found his classes not only great for wellbeing, but also for building self esteem and confidence.

Chris is passionate about health and is looking forward to supporting HOOP UK personally as well as through his business.

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Carol Bowen Ball BSc (Hons)

Carol is an established food writer with over 90 books published. A seasoned journalist, she was a former cookery editor of ‘Homes & Gardens’ magazine; a winner of the ‘Cookery Book of the Year Award’; and now sought-after pundit on all things relating to food and weight-loss surgery across the media (radio, magazines and TV).

Carol had weight-loss surgery about 3 years ago and as a consequence wrote the UK’s Ist and 2nd bariatric cookery books (‘Return to Slender’ and ‘Return to Slender…Second Helpings’). She also now advises those considering, or who have had, surgery on her bariatric cookery website.

Carol is a member of BOSPA, the National Obesity Forum, and the Guild of Food Writers.

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Professor Paul Gately

Founder and driver of MoreLife, Paul’s mission is to raise awareness and inspire action that tackles the global problem of obesity. As an expert in physical activity and nutrition, Paul has the professional credibility to understand the complex needs of obesity; but it is his personal commitment to families and individuals that make him inspirational.


Paul has contributed to the International Obesity Task Force / World Health Organisation’s report on childhood obesity, and continues to be a consultant to many government agencies, health organisations and corporations throughout the UK and internationally.


HOOP Social Media Angels

We have no idea where we would be without these ladies!

Mickey Karyn2 karen

Mickey – Twitter
and Facebook

Karyn – Twitter 
and Facebook

Karen – Pinterest


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How HOOP UK Started

kidnhoop1Lesley McCormack is the Founding Director Of HOOP UK Limited.

I became increasingly frustrated by the lack of support available for overweight and obese children, young people, families and adults. I felt something positive needed to be done.

My daughter was obese. I found it impossible to get any help or support for her. I was judged, blamed and ignored. None of these things were helpful to me or my child. In fact they were damaging.

Having found a service which I knew could help us, we were then met with many obstacles along the way. I had to fight like never before to get help for my daughter and it was an experience which I feel no other parent or child should have to endure.

Childhood and adult obesity is at a crisis point throughout the world and at its very worst here in the UK and yet people are being denied access to proven weight loss services.

Whilst there is some investment in national healthy eating and exercise messages such as the very successful Change4Life campaign, there is still a lack of preventative measures across all services and for all age groups. In particular, there is a lack of structure in support of ensuring young children at risk of obesity are helped and supported to make changes to improve their chances of a healthy weight in adulthood. And very little is done or on                                                   offer for adults who are already obese or at serious risk of obesity.

                                                 This is where HOOP UK (Helping Overcome Obesity Problems) aims to bridge that gap.

We are a unique group of passionate people including professionals and our aim is to make the changes needed so that all children and adults are given access to services which are right for them.

HOOP UK is run by people who care and understand so our support is second to none.

We want to help children and adults achieve a happy and healthy life style, we aim to create the correct environment for people to succeed and we offer support every step of the way.


If you would like to get involved with HOOP UK please let us know through our contacts page.

HOOP UK Limited is a company limited by guarantee. HOOP UK is a registered charity.



girlnhoopSMAt HOOP we are building a community of like minded people who can support each other and make a difference when it comes to the well being of people in this country.

We will be launching a forum on this website in the near future for ideas, support and news. We are encouraging health professionals to also get involved to assist us in bringing a greater awareness to the the wider public regarding the issues surrounding obesity.

Meanwhile we have a very active Facebook Page and also a Facebook Support Group which you can ask to join. We also have our HOOP Forum for chat, ideas and support.

We look forward to meeting you and welcoming you to our gang!

Get Involved

 kidnhoop2HOOP UK Limited is a not for profit company and a registered charity.

There are lots of ways to get involved. We would love you to bring your ideas to the table. We will need help in fund raising, running events and helping to support others when they need it.

Please do let us know if you would like to help through our contact page




Would you like to raise money for HOOP? 

Download our fund raising pack here


ddebit-download pdf 


HOOP – Help Overcoming Obesity Problems

Like our Facebook Page here

Welcome to HOOP UK!

We are a unique group of passionate people, including professionals, with the common aim to make the changes needed so that all children and adults struggling with obesity are given access to the services which are right for them.

  • HOOP UK is run by people who care and understand.
  • Our aim is to help children and adults achieve a happy and healthy life style.
  • We aim to create the correct environment for all to succeed and we aim to offer support every step of the way.

Lesley McCormack – Founding Director



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