Chris and Vanessa with their 2 youngest children Russell and Natalie. (2012)
Vanessa met whilst playing volleyball for the Liverpool University team. Chris
graduated as a Doctor in 1995 and Vanessa graduated as an Engineer in
Vanessa found employment and completed her graduate training with BNFL
(now Sellafield Ltd.) at Sellafield in West Cumbria and became an Engineering Manager at the
Sellafield MOX plant. Chris
followed and took a number of different junior jobs at the local hospitals.
They were married in 1998 and shortly after in 1999, Chris joined Westcroft
House Surgery in Egremont as a General Practitioner.
In 2001 Vanessa was promoted to manage a team of Engineers whose aim was
to improve the overall efficiency of the Sellafield site. She took a career
break in 2003 to raise her 3 children and subsequently retrained to become a
In 2009 Chris became Senior Partner at Westcroft House Surgery until he was forced to retire from the medical
profession in 2011 after being diagnosed with cancer.
Vanessa left her new job as Maths teacher at St Josephs High School to care for
Chris through what they were told would be, at best, his last 2 years. After a
year of chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatment and excellent care from
Vanessa, Chris recovered reasonable health and so they decided to invest in
some property in Florida. With the excellent advice from realtor Bernard
Scarpa, they purchased 3 properties which are now Armathwaite, Bassenthwaite
and Coniston Houses in the beautiful Emerald Island Resort.
Chris continues to 'beat the odds' with respect to his cancer and both
he and Vanessa now volunteer as Directors with 'Give Us A Break 2010'
- a West Cumbria charity
with the aim of providing a short break centre for disabled children.
Russell (14) and Natalie (11), their youngest children, both attend St Bees
School where they are achieving excellent results. Chris and Vanessa are also
very proud of Vanessa's daughter (and Chris's stepdaughter), Kirsty, who has
graduated with a first class honours degree from Birmingham Conservatoire and
is now studying a Ph.D.
Chris & Vanessa at Kirsty's graduation (2014)