The Work of Professor Paul Gately

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In June this year, HOOP UK Trustee Professor Paul Gately will be attempting the Bob Graham Challenge, running 72 miles up hill and down dale in the Lake District to raise money for HOOP UK.

Paul is an expert in childhood obesity and in 2008 made this documentary Too Fat To Toddle. 

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HOOP UK Vision and Values

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HOOP UK Vision

Our vision is in our name –  Helping Overcome Obesity Problems

HOOP UK is a safe place to start the journey and a stable, long lasting form of support for all for always.

HOOP UK is in place to improve and to save lives

HOOP UK has been established to be the voice of the obese person, to break down the stigma attached to obesity and working with partners, to affect change at a strategic level in the UK

HOOP UK brings a holistic approach to Health and Well Being through diet, nutrition, lifestyle, supply of relevant information and advice on physical fitness


HOOP UK Values




Challenging but Compassionate

Honest, Open and Genuine but Sensitive

A Safe Place

HOOP UK is Brave

HOOP UK is United

HOOP UK stands for all of the above and represents and is championed by, those who are experts by experience, those who have trained to be experts in the field of obesity and those who support both of these groups.

The Windy Walk by Louise

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On 31st March 2013 a group of HOOP UK Trustees, Ambassadors, Members and Supporters braved the biting wind to take part in the very first HOOP UK walk. Louise Foster-Spanner tells the story…

Henry was in charge of launching our balloons which heralded the start of our first HOOP UK walk. Having counted down from ten (which he had been practising all week) he yelled out ‘We have blast off launching HOOP UK! Release your balloons’. It was all very dramatic!

Twenty one of us, aged between 5 and 50 (I guessed that bit!) then set off from Saltburn Pier and we walked along the beach towards Marske which is a distance of about two and a quarter miles.

The weather was crisp, sunny and dry and walking towards Marske was lovely with the wind behind us propelling us along. My goodness it was cold!  Many of us opted for the onion effect – many skins/ layers which could be peeled off or on as required.

Competitive rivalry reared its head between HOOP UK Ambassador Lee Veasey and Henry, with Henry touching the boat first, which signalled the half way point.  Bets were laid down and the first one past the finish line was due a Lolly or ice- cream while the loser was footing the bill! It was tense.

The return journey however was something else! The wind which had propelled us along so helpfully on the outward leg became a biting, bone chilling  mistral. Clothes were layered back on and hats donned! Some hardy (some would say ‘northern’ hardy) folk were wearing just shorts and tights and no coats! As the northern saying goes, they must been ‘fair nithered’.

I had several reports from the walkers that only defrosting in a bath seemed to warm them up several hours later. The walk lasted two and half hours with the finishing line of the pier being crossed. Henry got his lolly!

Several walkers told me that prior to losing some weight the furthest they had walked was round the supermarket and so some people had very sore hips, joints and knees.  We all know the effect that being obese has on joints and several walkers told me that they would not have been able to participate in this stroll if they hadn’t already lost some weight. They also however said that they really enjoyed the friendship  & camaraderie. That was evident from the beginning in this non-threatening and inclusive stroll we hoped would be the first of many.

Louise Foster-Spanner
HOOP UK Trustee

Windy Walk for HOOP


A group supporting newly formed charity HOOP (Helping Overcome Obesity Problems) joined up to enjoy a breezy walk along the beach at Saltburn-by-the-Sea on Easter Sunday. The 4.5 mile beach walk organised by HOOP Trustee Louise Foster-Spanner, was started with a ceremonial launching of balloons by all who took part and went from Saltburn Pier to Marske and back.. The gathering marked the fact that HOOP has now gained charitable status and is beginning it’s work to bring help and support to obese adults and children across the UK.

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