Nameslink pops up at the play centre
We’ve teamed up with a cool children’s play centre to display the full range of Nameslink birthday and baby cards. You can find them on sale at Treetops Soft Play in Witchford on the outskirts of Ely, Cambridgeshire. This is the first time the cards have been available outside the website and the summer fairs that we attend regularly in west London. If you’re in the area, you’ll find cards that are special – plus a cafe serving drinks and meals. Treetops telephone 01353 665111
Who’s in and who’s out
One frequently asked question concerns how we select the names and their stories that appear inside Nameslink cards. The answer is that we try to present an interesting mix across a diverse spread that includes entertainment, sport, literature, science, adventure and leadership.
Some names are rich in actors, sports stars or musicians so a choice has to be made. For instance, there are many high achieving Ians in sport and we chose to feature heroic cricketer Ian Botham over footballer Ian Rush, fellow cricketer Ian Bell, golfer Ian Poulter and swimmer Ian Thorpe, any of whom might have made it on the strength of their performances.
Names such as Thomas, William, Mary and John have been prominent over the centuries so we try to blend them with contemporary characters for the sake of balance. Generally we’re looking for people whose names will already be familiar to most people although we think it’s fascinating to add the occasional wide card – someone whose life was unusual even if their name has faded over the years.
Here’s a good example about Annie Edson Taylor from the Annie card. She faced dire poverty, when in 1901 at the age of 63 she came up with a wheeze – riding in a barrel over the 150ft Niagara Falls. The barrel made of oak and iron, was just over 4ft high, fitted with a mattress and after a test run with a cat that survived, she became the first to plunge over the falls. Sadly, her manager ran off with her money – and the barrel.
Our most recent addition – a card for Julia – includes Australia’s first woman prime minister Julia Gillard, the former children’s laureate and Gruffalo author Julia Donaldson and the Hollywood superstar Julia Roberts.
If you don’t agree with any of our choices, we’re please to hear from you and have a debate.
Fascinating card for Hannah brings up 90 names
Hannah, just added to the catalogue, is our 90th name. Our selection reveals a fascinating group of Hannahs past and present. For instance Hannah Lightfoot a Quaker who was recently married against her mother’s wishes when she was spotted at a theatrical entertainment by the Prince of Wales, later George III. One night in 1754 a coach drew up at her home and she was taken away, never to be seen again. The story that took hold – and has persisted – was that she had been spirited away by the prince who kept her as his secret love and may have had two children by her.
Then there’s Hannah Snell who spent four years in the 18th century marines pretending to be a man. Quite a deception you might think, but although her fellow sailors questioned her smooth skin she convinced them of her ‘manliness’ by hard drinking and hard work on board ship. She was shot in a battle against the French in India but still concealed her true identity. On return to England she unmasked herself and appeared in stage shows as The Female Soldier.
Bang up to date, Hannah Cockroft stormed to two gold medals as one of the Team GB golden girls at the 2012 Paralympics – and that’s after doctors had warned her parents when she was a baby that she would be unlikely ever to walk or even talk.
Lovely way to welcome newborn babies
Thanks to everyone who has sent feedback recently. It’s good that the Hello card is proving popular. As a result we’ve designed the Hello cards more specifically for parents of newborn babies by adding a cute illustration on the front of the card (you can of course still order Hello without the baby). See the example on the home page or the link to Hello Card
where Charlotte is the example. It’s fun to welcome new babies to the world of their famous namesakes.
We’ve been doing a bit of work to make sure the name on your card matches the spelling your friends or family members prefer. There are a lot of names with a variety of spellings and we want to match our cards as precisely as possible.
Our list has always contained separate cards for Clare and Claire and now we’ve refreshed the cards for Anne, Ann and Annie so that, for example, the life stories inside the Ann card are not combined with Annes.
And we have new content in cards for Catherine, Kate and Kathryn.
There is unique content in our cards for Stephen and Steven and if you want to send a greeting to someone who prefers to be known as Steve you can choose from either the Stephen or the Steven selection.
It’s all part of the regular process of extending and improving our catalogue. All feedback welcome at email@example.com
Onwards and Outwards, a good first year
At Nameslink Cards we’re marking our first year in business this spring with plans to extend and improve our service. We now have 85 names in our Happy Birthday catalogue – and that’s not counting the short versions of some names like Chris, Sue and Vicky – and we hope to reach our first 100 by the summer.
For our most recent additions we went back to the 1950s and 60s when Alan, Brian and Pamela were popular and we’re expecting Carol, Hannah, Ray and Zoe to join them soon.
We will be back this year at the three big summer fairs in west London: Richmond in May, Kew in June and St Margarets in July and we look forward to seeing you there.
We hope you like our redesigned website and as always, we’re keen to hear from you with any comments, suggestions or requests. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
One thing you can be sure of – when you send a Nameslink Happy Birthday card you’re sending a greeting that’s unique – personal, original and fascinating. There’s nothing quite like them.
We have chosen Oliver as an example here and all cards look like this. Choose a name and a message from our list and we’re sure you’ll love the card. Click on images below to show enlargement.