In the Spotlight: with Sian Twynham

Many of us will have met Sian during a visit to Lloyds Pharmacy in Kibworth Beauchamp. She and her staff have been extraordinarily busy during this past year as many more people have sought advice direct from the pharmacy to avoid adding to the workload for the surgeries. She is married with a small daughter so has a busy home life as well so we are pleased that she has found time to answer a few light hearted questions. She preferred not to supply a photograph.

1 What is your earliest memory

My earliest memory is helping my Dad digging in the garden when I must have been about 4 or 5. At our old house he used to grow vegetables at the far end of the garden and I used to insist on helping, hunting for earthworms and ladybirds (even if I was wearing one of the pretty dresses my Mum made for me and ended up filthy)

2 What did you want to be when growing up?

I had many ideas: ballerina, vet, doctor, eventually I decided I wanted to work with costume/historical fashion which I studied at college, however I decided that what was most important to me was being a Mum, so I decided to find a job that would allow me to have a family.

3 How did you come to work in Kibworth?

I started working at the pharmacy as a Saturday girl about 14 years ago. At the time I was also working at Peacocks in Market Harborough, trying to save money towards a house. My mother was the supervisor at another branch of Lloyds pharmacy and told me about the position. Eventually I took on more hours until I was offered the supervisor’s position when the current supervisor left to go on maternity leave.

4 What do you do to relax?

I find it very difficult to relax but I tend to just try and distract myself! Along with my husband and daughter I tend to watch a lot of films and I love to do crafty things with my daughter who will soon be five.

5 Do you have a favourite book, play or film and if so, why do you like it?

It would be really difficult to choose a favourite film, there are too many! Books are a similar problem but one of my favourites is “Witches Abroad” by Terry Pratchett. I find his wit and wisdom hilarious and his observations of humanity and society are spot on. 

6 What was your most embarrassing moment?

There have been many! I’m incredibly clumsy so I am always falling over, walking into things, you name it. I do remember when I was visiting a friend who was studying at Leicester University I managed to fall over in the middle of the road by Fenwicks, throwing the entire contents of my bag across the road; only for two burly men on the other side of the road to yell ‘you alright love?’ in front of everyone and the stopped cars.

7 What do you like most about your work as a Pharmacist?

I’m not actually a pharmacist, technically I am a supervisor and a dispensing assistant. I think I have the better deal job-wise to the Pharmacist, as I get much greater job variety. I enjoy being able to talk to the customers, give them advice and the best bit is when I see them next time and I hear how they got on and that they feel better.

8 Due to the Covid Pandemic, this past year must have proved particularly challenging for your work. What have been the most difficult aspects to deal with?    

Working at the pharmacy has been non stop. the sheer volume of work we had to process at the start of lockdown was just incredible and the whole team were exhausted. Not only that but there was also a sense of fear. We all had loved ones we wanted to protect and we have staff members who are vulnerable or shielding as well. 

9 In your view, what could we all do to stay safer and healthier?

The pandemic has cause so many problems for people of all walks of life. I think my top tips would be to:

Follow the guidelines- masks, social distancing, hand washing. Let’s not give the virus the opportunity to spread

Talk to people be it on the phone, video calls, text message or write a letter even. Relish the social interactions you can have safely.

Try to keep to a routine during the day, this will help you feel like you have been productive if you’re at home all day. It will stimulate your mind and help you sleep, it might stop you from boredom eating as well!

10 What are you most looking forward to, when and if things get back to “normal” ?

I really just want to go to the seaside for the day! 

11 Which 6 people (living or dead) would you invite to a dinner party?

This is not something I’ve ever thought about but Vivienne Westwood, Stevie Nicks, Elizabeth I, Terry Pratchett, David Attenborough and I’d leave no.6 as a mystery

12 If a film was to be made of your life, who would play you best?

I have no idea! 

Interview by Carol Townend