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Interview with Clare Kersley, osteopath
Pevensey Bay Journal, edition 26
1 May 2019, available in print, Saturday 25 May
image credit: Clare Kersley

It’s a good central location. And it makes sense for me. I’m already in Hailsham and Bexhill so Stone Cross makes a handy triangle. People can choose to see me in whichever place suits them best.-—Clare Kersley, 1 May 2019

JOURNAL: This is a pretty impressive set of credentials to set up your business in Stone Cross, a First Class honours degree from Middlesex University and 18 years’ experience. How did you start 18 years ago, we are clearly seeing something of a vocation here with your work as an osteopath, like teaching and nursing. What inspired you to become an osteopath?

CLARE KERSLEY: I was always interested in health and fitness – I taught aerobics for a while, and I worked as a sports massage therapist while I was training to be an osteopath. But actually, I used to be a management accountant! I got into osteopathy after playing golf one Christmas. I injured myself and went to see an osteopath. While I was lying there having treatment, I thought, ‘I could do this’ and I did! That was back in 1995. I spent 5 years re-training, and qualified as an osteopath in 2001.

When I first qualified, I worked at someone else’s practice in Stamford, Lincolnshire. Then I set up my own clinic in Oakham. Oakham’s a small market town in Rutland. It’s a little bit like Hailsham, in fact.

JOURNAL: We see you have a business base in both Hailsham and Bexhill already. This is your third base, this looks like natural organic growth, perhaps the best way with a business of this description, why the decision to set up next in Stone Cross. What attracts you about the locality?

CLARE: There are plenty of osteopaths in Eastbourne but not many in Pevensey and Stone Cross. My thinking was that setting up in Stone Cross would appeal to people who don’t want the hassle of driving into Eastbourne. And it’s also a handy location for people living in Pevensey and Westham, and for people driving past from Polegate or Hailsham – it’s a good central location. And it makes sense for me. I’m already in Hailsham and Bexhill so Stone Cross makes a handy triangle. People can choose to see me in whichever place suits them best.

And the room I’ve rented at Saint Luke’s is great! It’s big and airy, there’s a car park right outside and it’s got a really nice feel to it.

JOURNAL: When we talked on the phone, you mentioned that families come to you for treatment, that shows a real strength and width to your work, the demographic of stone Cross is partly young family based, was that understanding part of your decision making process in setting up in Stone Cross?

CLARE: I do treat family groups, yes. Usually what happens is that someone will come to me for treatment, then their other half will come, then they book the children in too.

It can be really useful to assess children osteopathically, to look at their alignment. And it’s surprising how much muscle tightness I find even in relatively young children. Phones, laptops, Ipads, gaming – it all contributes. It can make a big difference to a child’s concentration when they’re feeling more comfortable and aligned. I hope young families will get to know I’m here and will come and see what a difference osteopathy can make.

JOURNAL: We talked about the room in Stone Cross, sounds fabulous and comfortable, big, and with parking as well, do you have any ideas for people to come along and see what you do with any Open Days, just so people can meet and make contact with you?

CLARE: Not at the moment, but that’s a really good idea. People are welcome to ring me or email me with any questions. And I have a lot of information available on my website www.osteopathyforwellbeing.co.uk

JOURNAL: What is your goal for the first year in Stone Cross? Are you looking to establish a big launch straightaway with your profile, or do you see something in building over time with clear benchmarks?

CLARE: I’m starting off on a part-time basis. Because I already work from Hailsham and Bexhill, I’m splitting my time. I’m aiming to do Tuesdays and Fridays in Stone Cross; Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturday mornings in Hailsham, and Thursdays in Bexhill. Those days are not set in stone, I’m pretty flexible, but that’s what I’m aiming for.

JOURNAL: How much of your business comes through referral?

CLARE: That’s an interesting question. I’d say in Bexhill, most of my new patients come from word of mouth. In Hailsham, it’s probably 50/50 word of mouth and people finding my website by Googling ‘osteopath’. It will be interesting to see what happens in Stone Cross.

JOURNAL: How do you see your three business bases working together, are there any plans to employ more osteopaths?

CLARE: I would like to grow the practices in Hailsham and Stone Cross. There’s plenty of scope for taking on one or two Associates. Because I have exclusive use of my premises in both places, I could easily have someone else working at each location on the days I’m not there. Bexhill’s different because I work from home there.

JOURNAL: We really like the notion of ‘the caring approach to pain relief and wellbeing’ that underscores your business profile. What is your message to the people of Stone Cross and the locality about what you do with treatments?

CLARE: I take the time to understand your unique combination of symptoms, your medical history and your lifestyle, which helps me to address the cause of your problem, not just the symptoms you are experiencing, and this allows me to formulate a treatment plan specifically for you.

Interview with Clare Kersley, osteopath
07954 327614

Pevensey Bay Journal, 1 May 2019
Simon Montgomery
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