Friday 31 October 2014

Sixth Sense

Bill Crome, supernatural encounters.
Bill Crome, Window Cleaner (by the gentle author): This is Bill Crome, a venerable window cleaner with thirty years’ experience in the trade, who makes a speciality out of cleaning the windows of the old houses in the East End. You might assume cleaning windows is a relatively mundane occupation and that, apart from the risk of falling off a ladder, the job is otherwise without hazard – yet Bill’s recent experiences have proved quite the contrary, because he has supernatural encounters in the course of his work that would make your hair stand on end.

“It wasn’t a career choice,” admitted Bill with phlegmatic good humour, “When I left school, a man who had a window cleaning business lived across the road from me, so I asked his son for a job and I’ve been stuck in it ever since. I have at least sixty regulars, shops and houses, and quite a few are here in Spitalfields. I like the freedom, the meeting of people and the fact that I haven’t got a boss on my back.” In spite of growing competition from contractors who offer cleaning, security and window cleaning as a package to large offices, Bill has maintained his business manfully, even in the face of the recession, but now he faces a challenge of another nature entirely. Although, before I elaborate, let me emphasise that Bill Crome is one of the sanest, most down-to-earth men you could hope to meet.

“I’ve heard there is a window cleaner in Spitalfields who sees ghosts,” I said, to broach the delicate subject as respectfully as I could. “That’s me,” he confessed without hesitation, colouring a little and lowering his voice, “I’ve seen quite a few. Five years ago, at the Society for the Preservation of Ancient Buildings in Spital Sq, I saw a sailor on the second floor. I was outside cleaning the window and this sailor passed in front of me. He was pulling his coat on.  He put his arms in the sleeves, moving as he did so, and then walked through the wall. He looked the sailor on the Players Navy Cut cigarette packet, from around 1900 I would guess, in his full uniform.

And then I saw a twelve year old girl on the stair, she was bent down, peering at me through the staircase. I was about to clean the window, and I could feel someone watching me, then as I turned she was on the next floor looking down at me. She had on a grey dress with a white pinafore over the top. And she had a blank stare.

I did some research. I went to a Spiritualist Church in Wandsworth and one of the Spiritualists said to me, ‘You’ve got a friend who’s a sailor haven’t you?’ They told me how to deal with it. When we investigated we found it was to do with the old paintings at the Society for the Preservation of Ancient Buildings, amongst the collection were portraits of a sailor and of a girl. Once I was walking up to the top floor, and I looked at the picture of the girl and she had a smiling face – but when I went back to collect my squeegee, I looked again and she had a frown. It sounds really stupid doesn’t it? I found a leaflet in the house explaining about the history of the paintings and how the family that gave them was dying off. The paintings are off the wall now, yet they had a nice feeling about them, of sweetness and calm.”

Bill confirmed that since the paintings were taken down, he has seen no more ghosts while cleaning windows in Spital Square and the episode is concluded, though the implications of these sinister events have been life changing, as he explained when he told me of his next encounter with the otherwordly.

“I was cleaning the windows of a house in Sheerness, and I looked into the glass and I saw the reflection of an old man right behind me. I could see his full person, a six foot four inch very tall man, standing behind me in a collarless shirt. But when I turned round there was no-one there.

I went down to the basement, cleaning the windows, and I felt like someone was climbing on my back. Then I started heaving, I was frozen to the spot. All I kept thinking was, ‘I’ve got to finish this window,’ but as soon as I came out of the basement I felt very scared. Speaking to a lady down the road, she told me that in this same house, in the same window, a builder got thrown off his ladder in the past year and there was no explanation for it.

I won’t go back and do that house again, I can tell you.”

As Bill confided his stories, he spoke deliberately, taking his time and maintaining eye contact as he chose his words carefully. I could see that the mere act of telling drew emotions, as Bill re-experienced the intensity of these uncanny events whilst struggling to maintain equanimity. My assumption was that although Bill’s experience at the Society for the Preservation of Ancient Buildings might be attributed to a localised phenomenon, what happened in Sheerness suggests that Bill himself is the catalyst for these sightings.

“I feel that I have opened myself up to it because I’ve been to the Spiritualist Church a few times,” he revealed to me. “I do expect to see more ghosts because I work in a lot of old properties, especially round Spitalfields. I don’t dread it but I don’t look forward to it either. It has also made me feel like I do want to become a Spiritualist, and every time I go along, they say, ‘Are you a member of the church?’ But I don’t know. I don’t know what can of worms I’ve opened up.”

Bill’s testimony was touching in its frankness – neither bragging nor dramatising –  instead he was thinking out loud, puzzling over these mysterious events in a search for understanding. As we walked together among the streets of ancient dwellings in the shadow of the old church in Spitalfields where many of the residents are his customers, I naturally asked Bill Crome if he has seen any ghosts in these houses. At once, he turned reticent, stopping in his tracks and insisting that he maintain discretion. “I don’t tell my customers if I see ghosts in their houses.” he informed me absolutely, looking me in the eye,“They don’t need to know and I don’t want to go scaremongering.” If you would like your windows cleaned by Bill Crome, you can call him on 07720431452
Ghosts 101: Haunting First Aid - How to Reduce the Scariness/Malevolence. Cleaning - Once you have smudged, you need to *clean* the house or space of all dust, dirt, bug fragments, and so forth. I recommend doing this particular step in the daytime. Let the sunlight in -- clean the windows so that the healing and cleansing power of the sun can reach everywhere. Open the windows if the weather is good. If you do not have windows that let in the sunlight, use brightly colored candles (yellow is good) or oil lamps.

Thursday 30 October 2014

Would You Clean A Haunted Window?

“We’ve probably been to 360 locations throughout the Midwest. The Belvoir Winery is probably the most haunted place we’ve ever investigated,” said Nick Spantgos, co-founder of Paranormal Research Investigators.
Spooky Kansas City - A paranormal paradise: Kandice Walker was relatively new on the job at the John Wornall House Museum in 2006 when she had the first of what was to become many odd experiences. “It was my third day, and I was opening the museum for the first time,” she said. But as she pulled in and looked up at one of the museum’s windows, she was alarmed by what she saw. Two little girls were apparently inside. Having children locked all night in the museum is never a good thing to have happen on your watch. “I was fairly freaked out,” Walker said. But when she worriedly searched the premises, there was no sign of them.
Only later did she learn that two small girls had lived at the house and had died of childhood disease, and that people frequently claim to have seen them. Walker didn’t know it at the time, but the Wornall House had a long-standing reputation as being haunted, with numerous sightings not only of the girls but of soldiers and the Wornall family. Walker, who went on to become director of the museum, can laugh about it now. “Nobody told the new kid about the ghosts,” she said.
That wasn’t the only weirdness Walker experienced with locking and opening up. Another time, Walker arrived early to unlock and found the door open enough that leaves had drifted inside. But the motion-sensitive alarm didn’t sound until Walker herself entered. That happened twice in a row. The third day, all the doors were shut but none locked, including a “widow’s balcony” door that was never unlocked by museum staff, she said.
Distinct and unaccounted-for footsteps are a common occurrence, say staff members, as well as the smell of cherry pipe tobacco, which is attributed to John Wornall, the home’s former owner. Children seem to be a common sighting as well, according to docents who spend a lot of time there. A few years ago, a little boy whose family lived nearby asked if he could play with the girls he saw in the windows. Another childlike spirit is thought to be that of Mittie Pigg, an orphan who became a servant during the Civil War.

This is the Oliver Family Mansion in Chester, PA. The Oliver family went missing in 1898. The mystery baffled investigators and the family was never found but locals say they can see them in the windows of the mansion.
Photographer Seph Lawless is a master of the abandoned - his frames are filled with eerie portraits of shopping malls, factories, homes. All dilapidated, all empty, all but forgotten. He usually travels across the United States via hybrid vehicle, equipped with a camera and a knack for finding ways inside strange structures, collecting stories of his adventures along the way.
It shouldn't be surprising that Lawless' travel logs include more than a few ghostly tales. He is, after all, venturing through the detritus of tougher times. He was bound to stumble upon a few terrifying properties, left to crumble while the rest of us are too afraid to notice. Just in time for Halloween, Lawless has compiled the most hauntingly beautiful of the bunch in a book titled "'13: An American Horror Story."
Essentially, the tome is a high quality coffee table book for the macabre obsessed. From Texas, Ohio, New York, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Kentucky, Wisconsin and Connecticut, Lawless shows off the real life haunted houses he's visited throughout his work, and the slightly startling histories and personal stories that make them unique.
Most haunted places in Cirencester revealed: The night where ghosts and ghouls come out to play is upon us again. As Halloween approaches, Cirencester Ghost Society describes its top places to visit on a spooky walk around the town. Black Horse pub haunting..  There have been several unknown apparitions in the popular pub. In one incident an evil looking lady appeared in a bedroom, scratched a signature in a black window, before disappearing. Others have smelt lavender by the pub’s fireplace. It is thought that it comes from a ghost of a previous cleaner who always spayed lavender polish near the fireplace.

The town hosted its first haunted house tour (Chesterfield) - "This is the first year of what is to be an annual event," said Keith Reimann, adding there is plenty of material to make each year’s tours different. Stories of ghosts have been around this town for generations, he said. He said he had a disclaimer and a warning before continuing the tour. "Nothing you are going to hear tonight has been made up by me or anyone else for the sake of this tour," he said. "And now, the warning: The history of Crosswicks is full of events that are cruel, violent and tragic and I won’t be sparing any details."
Mr. Wolverton told his guests that if they were brave enough, they could continue with him to their next stop, the Garden Hand Inn, a stagecoach stop up until the 1850s. He told of new homeowners who moved in the early 1990s. The mother was outside cleaning windows one day and ran out of the commercial brand of window cleaner and didn’t want to stop cleaning so she went to the closet, but there was no more, only Uncle Al’s window cleaner. "Her Uncle Al was a favorite," he said. "He liked to invent things and make his own solutions and give it away as gifts to friends." He said Uncle Al had died so she just kept it as a memento.
"It was then she noticed smoke coming in the window," he said. "She looked out; no one was there. She went all the way around the house, and there was no fire. She went back to work. It was then she realized that it was not just any smoke, but it was pipe smoke, and it was the very flavor of cherry pipe smoke that her Uncle Al use to smoke." It comforted her to know her Uncle Al is always here, he said.
July 15, 1962, John Wine came home from a weekend fishing trip sponsored by the insurance company he worked and arrived home around 8 p.m. when he opened his front door and was blown into the middle of Main Street by an explosion, Mr. Wolverton said. "It was a back draft caused by a sudden rush of oxygen to a fire that had been smoldering all day," he said. "His wife, Ethel, 51, had been smoking in bed and was burned beyond recognition." It might have been Ethel’s ghost waiting for the new owners in the late ’70s when the Seahuts moved in, he said. "Someone was trying to keep them out of one of the bedrooms," he said, adding they kept finding the door locked from the inside with a deadbolt. They had to climb out on the roof and go in through a window to unlock it, he added.
Watch moment 'ghost' reveals itself in the window of Britain’s ‘most haunted’ pub: This video footage is believed to show the moment a ghost reveals itself in the window of Britain’s ‘most haunted’ pub. The 19 second clip shows a strange light flickering in a first floor window of Bolton’s 763-year-old Ye Olde Man and Scythe. The footage was taken by a tourist who  - speaking in Portuguese - describes the old Churchgate boozer as ‘one of the oldest’ in England, adding: “And the most haunted.”
Just after he refers to a famous CCTV clip - which became an internet hit after it was first published it in February - something strange can be seen in the first floor window. As the man talks about the ‘crazy cider’ for which the pub is known, a flickering light appears in the window. Pub manager Tony Dooley says the clip is further proof the pub is haunted. Tony, 36, said: “I’m not too happy about it. That’s my flat behind the window. My attitude before I became the manager nine months ago was not to believe in ghosts. I’m convinced now.”
Only a few weeks ago he said he was woken by what he thought what his partner’s pet dog Kallie licking his feet only to discover the animal was fast asleep. “My feet were clammy and wet, like sweaty palms only worse. I went straight to the bathroom and took a shower with the dog in the room making sure nothing else happened. It was creepy. My attitude is as long the ghost doesn’t harm me then that’s fine,” said Tony.

The first ‘ghost’ video emerged after spooked Tony had checked CCTV cameras and discovered a strange, luminous figure flickering into view in the bar. The pub’s owner Richard Greenwood said he is now trying to get in touch with the person who shot the latest video. Asked whether it was a stunt, he said: “I wish I’d have thought of it if that’s the case.” He insisted the pub is haunted, adding: “This gives the original video more credibility, I suppose.”
Factfile on Britain’s ‘most haunted’ pub: The pub, which dates from 1251, is the fourth-oldest pub in Britain and is reputedly haunted by the Seventh Earl of Derby, James Stanley. The royalist, whose family originally owned the inn, is said to have spent the last hours of his life there before he was beheaded in 1651 towards the end of the Civil War. The chair he sat in before he was taken outside and executed is still in the pub today - and some say so is he.
Hundreds of soldiers and civilians were also killed outside the pub in the Bolton Massacre of 1644. With such a bloody history, it has long been considered a hotspot for paranormal activity and a psychic evening held there in 2006 reportedly found it to be haunted by at least 25 spirits. Among them is said to be a woman who hung herself in the cellar several centuries ago as well as an eight-year-old girl and a phantom dog.

The 'ghost' in the bottom right window of Michelle Midwinter's house.
Creepy 'Victorian ghost' picture in house 'haunted by murder suspect' will give you nightmares: Terrified mum saw a spirit staring out from inside her house but on closer inspection, there was no-one was there. This creepy picture supposedly shows the ghost of a murder suspect who is haunting a family home. Petrified mum Michelle Midwinter, 30, spotted the spectre in a photo of her house, which she took to share with friends on her Facebook page. The eerie image appears to show a figure of a man, implicated in an infamous Victorian murder, staring out the window from inside her property in Trowbridge, Wiltshire.
Mum-of-one Michelle took the spine-chilling photo last month, a week after moving in to North Bradley. Mobile phone case designer, Michelle, who has nicknamed the phantom Old Man Kent, said: "I went outside and took a picture but after initially admiring the brickwork the face just sort of jumped out at me. "I ran into the house to make sure no one was in there because I knew everyone else was at work, but it was just me and my two-year-old daughter. "I studied the photo for a while and then put it on Facebook to see if anyone else could come up with an explanation as to how the face could have got there."
She believes the photo shows the spirit of Samuel Kent, whose daughter Constance brutally murdered his three-year-old son in the nearby village of Rode in 1860. The factory inspector, who died in 1872, was originally a suspect in the Rode Hill House murder but was cleared when his daughter was convicted. Michelle added: "The picture caused quite a stir on Facebook, but no one could really come up with any plausible explanation. "Most people thought it was a reflection of the flowers below the window but the angles are all wrong." "It's hard to believe but it clearly looks like the face of an old man."
This terrifying image comes after a spate of reports that ghosts have been popping up in photographs across the nation, most recently at Cannock Chase, in the Midlands, where a black-eyed girl was caught on camera. Michelle, who denies claims that the picture has been doctored, said a number of ghostly goings on has led her to believe her house may be haunted. "Another weird thing was that my friend saw a door handle move down and the door opened in the same room the face in the window was in. "I was just so surprised because I thought someone was in the house. We also checked the attic to make sure no one was living up there. "I can't really say what I think the face in the window is, as I honestly don't know.

The most haunted part of the building is said to be the oak-panelled ‘Dark Room’, so-called because the windows have various stained glass bearing the Giffard family associations with the site. Several members of staff have refused to go into the room unless there is somebody else with them.
Giffard Arms, Wolverhampton: Also apparently haunted is the Giffard Arms, in Victoria Street, Wolverhampton. There are believed to be a number of ghosts which haunt the pub, in Victoria Street. One of them is believed to be the spirit of Anne Horton, whose ghost has been reportedly seen following young men back from the pub at night. She is said to have been a prostitute who took her own life on the site in the early 20th century. The pub was built in 1922, but the Giffard family had owned a house on the site prior to that.
There have been other sightings of a girl around the age of 11, who is often seen playing with wooden play bricks in the main bar, in the middle seat by the back window. She is also reported to have been seen in the doorway in the kitchen of the upstairs flat. Another sighting is of a man, who is believed to be an old landlord named John, who has been seen locking up the pub at night. He walks right through the actual bar area as it wasn’t there when he had the pub. There have even been reports about a dog haunting the bar.
Over the years there have been stories of glasses moving and exploding for no apparent reason, cold spots in certain places in the pub, doors closing, strange noises and smells. The most haunted part of the building is said to be the oak-panelled ‘Dark Room’, so-called because the windows have various stained glass bearing the Giffard family associations with the site. Several members of staff have refused to go into the room unless there is somebody else with them.
The White Jockey: A white jockey was once seen in the grandstand of the former Ripon Racecourse, now part of the Cathedral Choir School in Whitcliffe Lane. According to Ghost Stories from around Ripon and other Dark Tales of the Past, written by local historian Maurice Taylor and published by Ripon Civic Society, a khaki-clad First World War soldier has also appeared in the projection box of the former Palladium Cinema in Kirkgate, and a hooded monk at St Anne’s Almhouses on High St Agnesgate. Ripon’s first Mayor, Hugh Ripley, is also said to have appeared at the window of the Wakeman’s House, while clergymen and housemaids have been seen at the Old Deanery. A poltergeist, experienced by Mervyn Usher of the former Cobbler’s Corner in High Skellgate, is also featured in the book. Recalling the day in 2003, he said: “It just came flying across the room towards us. We got out of the way and the plate hit the wall. “It didn’t smash, the middle piece just dropped out and stayed in one piece.’

Wednesday 29 October 2014

Premiums & Health For U.S. Window Cleaners

Tom Beckfeld, a self-employed snowplower and window cleaner, poses outside his home in Big Lake, Minn. Beckfeld acknowledged he's worried about getting a big rate increase notice from PreferredOne but added he has saved so much money thanks to the Affordable Care Act's ban on excluding patients with preexisting conditions that he'll be better off no matter what.
Renewal costs may surprise MNsure customers (Minneapolis): Minnesotans who bought policies on the state's health insurance exchange are starting to get their first renewal notices, and many could be in for a jolt. Premiums for most of the more than 55,000 individuals signed up for private insurance plans via MNsure are going up. For the nearly 33,000 who have coverage from PreferredOne, most who want to keep those policies next year will have to pay over 60 percent more, according to officials with the Minnesota Association of Health Underwriters who've seen the company's rate data.

Tom Beckfeld, a self-employed snowplower and window cleaner from Big Lake, acknowledged he's worried about getting a big rate increase notice from PreferredOne. But he said he has saved so much money thanks to the Affordable Care Act's ban on excluding patients with preexisting conditions that he'll still be better off. Beckfeld, 56, has diabetes and high blood pressure. The only insurance he could get before MNsure cost about $750 a month. PreferredOne charges him $421 a month and covers much more, including drugs. He put the savings at about $12,000 this year.

"Even if PreferredOne doubled its rates and came more in line with Blue Cross and everybody else, I'm still looking at saving thousands of dollars a year," he said.

Most people who bought PreferredOne policies via MNsure are expected to switch to other carriers because PreferredOne —which grabbed the largest market share by offering the lowest rates — is pulling out of the exchange. Consumers who qualify for tax credits definitely will have to choose other carriers because subsidies are available only through MNsure.

Tom Beckfeld, a self-employed snowplower and window cleaner, poses outside his home in Big Lake, Minn. Beckfeld acknowledged he's worried about getting a big rate increase notice from PreferredOne but added he has saved so much money thanks to the Affordable Care Act's ban on excluding patients with preexisting conditions that he'll be better off no matter what.
Premiums for three of the four carriers sticking with MNsure will also rise, the plans have confirmed. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota, which was No. 2 with 22 percent of the signups this year, will raise its premiums an average of 17.2 percent. HealthPartners's rate increases average 8.1 percent, while Medica's will rise just 1.8 percent. However, UCare's average premiums will fall 9.1 percent.

State officials say MNsure will still offer some of the lowest premiums in the country. Blue Cross and HealthPartners recently started sending out renewal notices. Medica and UCare officials said theirs won't go out until early November, just ahead of open enrollment, which begins Nov. 15. A PreferredOne spokesman did not respond to requests for comment on its rates and renewal plans.

Heidi Michaels, an insurance broker with Dyste Williams in St. Louis Park, said she's already helping clients sort out their options. For example, she has an Eden Prairie family of four with a PreferredOne plan with a $710 premium and a $4,000 deductible. The closest 2015 PreferredOne plan they could choose would cost 42 percent more with a $7,700 deductible, and their clinic isn't in that network. They could also choose a Blue Cross plan that includes their clinic and cuts their deductible to $2,000, but the premium is 37 percent higher and office visits are limited to two. "So they're left with not-great choices, but regardless of their choice they're going to have an increase," said Michaels, president-elect of the underwriters group.

HealthPartners has already sent "pre-renewal" letters to help its members prepare, said Executive Vice President Andrea Walsh.

Anthony Schmitz, a custom kayak builder and writer from St. Paul, indicated that he'd be glad to get a renewal notice, whatever it says about a premium increase — at least it would be evidence that he's insured. Like many Minnesotans, Schmitz had difficulty enrolling due to technical problems with the MNsure website. He said he's paid his premiums regularly, but got a cancellation notice from Blue Cross in July and has been struggling to straighten things out. "I believe as of yesterday I have insurance again, but who knows?" Schmitz said.

Signing up was also a "long ordeal" for pastor David Berge. But the 32-year-old, his wife, and two sons ultimately got Medica and UCare plans through the public Medical Assistance program for lower-income people, which comes without any premium. And a note in his mail recently was welcome. "We got a letter saying we were automatically re-enrolled, so we don't have to do anything, which is definitely good news," Berge said.

“I ran into trouble with marathons,” said Herzog, who is a professional high-rise window cleaner. “Marathons were not the best distance for me.”
Bill Herzog – Running Is All About Getting Fit And Giving Back: Bill Herzog had a unique incentive for tying up his brand new running shoes and going for his first jog nine years ago. The nudge to get out the door and down the street was his wife, Tammy. His incentive was a kiss. “My wife got into running before me,” Herzog said. “It gave me an incentive. If I couldn’t run as fast as my wife, I was never going to get a kiss.”

So began Herzog’s unlikely journey in running that has led him to 5K road races, to half marathons, marathons, triathlons and (gasp) to being the president of Club Oly Road Runners in 2009 and is now race director for the club. His chase for kisses led him to a community embrace. “It’s all about giving back,” the 48-year-old Herzog said.

And it’s about getting people to get out and run, to pursue fitness and good health. In hopes of being a nudge for others to take that step and get involved in running, Herzog is helping to organize the annual Turn Back The Clock run, which will be held Nov. 2 at Rainier Vista Community Park in Lacey. Since it’s on Daylight Savings, the day we turn back the clock and get an extra hour that day, Herzog is encouraging people to take part in a “healthy, enjoyable and well-organized event.” Runners can choose to do a 5K, 10K or, for the first time, a half marathon that day.

Growing up in southern California, Herzog was never much of a runner. His sport of choice was rock climbing and surfing. Tammy, looking for a way to get into better shape so she wouldn’t be panting as she taught her self-defense classes, helped change that. Unexpectedly, Herzog’s running fetish turned him a marathon man. But after running five of them, he made an important discovery. “I ran into trouble with marathons,” said Herzog, who is a professional high-rise window cleaner. “Marathons were not the best distance for me.”

After running over 200 miles in preparation for the marathon and then running the marathon – his best time was 4 hours and 6 minutes – his legs would tighten up about a month after the event. That nudged Herzog to triathlons. “I think by mixing it up and doing different activities and not just running was better for me,” Herzog said. “Some runners can tolerate a lot of running. Others can’t. I break. If I just run and do nothing but running, I have injury problems.”

Just under 5’11″ and weighing 200 pounds, Herzog doesn’t have the lean body of a long-distance runner. But by mix in running with swimming and biking, Herzog can go on and on. He’s done about 50 triathlons, including the Leadman Triathlon, which is a longer version of the Iron Man.  It’s held every September in Bend, Ore., and the swim portion of the race is 3.1 miles, the bike portion is 138 miles and the run is 14 miles. This year, Herzog did the shorter version. “Doing the swimming, biking, and running has been best for me,” Herzog said.

Interestingly, while Herzog has found his niche in triathlons, he’s not content with it just being about his accomplishments. Instead, he gets involved, volunteering. “I think it’s important to give back,” Herzog said. “I think it’s really important not to be so self-focused.”

Over the years, Herzog has been involved with non-profits. He moved here to Washington from California nearly 20 years ago and helped plant a couple of churches. So, when Herzog got involved with running and joined the Club Oly Road Runners, he saw it as his responsibility to raise his hand and volunteer to help. “People had helped me, nurtured me. And given me help,” Herzog said.

Andy Fritz, Miguel Galena and Rich Brown befriended Herzog and helped him learn more about running and training. Brown, the Tumwater High School cross-country coach, is now coaching Herzog’s daughter. “There were things that needed to be done. Someone needed to put a hand up, a hand in and help out,” Herzog said about his commitment to volunteering. “I just started helping. That’s the other thing that the club is all about – giving back and helping others. It’s always been about volunteering.”

Herzog, with his passion for triathlons, was a catalyst in bringing the Black Hills Triathlon back. He’s on the committee for that event that’s held every year at Long Lake Park.

In addition to encouraging others to start running, Herzog and the running club he’s part of also helps by donating money to organizations and individuals. They help Crime Stoppers put on its annual run, the Reindeer Run. They’ve also helped the Olympia Education Foundation with a number of races. Their upcoming race – Turn Back The Clock – is a fund raiser for local high school cross country programs. “We’re all about helping the running community,” Herzog said. On occasion, they’ve also helped individual families. They donated about $600 to a club member’s family when her husband went through cancer treatment. “We try to help where we can,” Herzog said.

Tuesday 28 October 2014

Window Wealth From Cleaning Windows

How to start and grow a cleaning business! Are you looking to improve the way your company does business? Do you want insider tips on how to grow? This eBook and video training package is the perfect solution you!
Written by Joshua Latimer, owner of Birds Beware Window Cleaning. This 16 chapter eBook explains step by step how he grew a tiny window cleaning business into one doing over $100,000 a month in only a few short years.
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The E Book: A 16 chapter field guide on how to grow a BIG window cleaning business.  Written by a guy who is boots on the ground right now in this industry and doing it every day.  FREE AUDIO SAMPLE

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Click to enlarge

Monday 27 October 2014

Bank Of Ireland's Poster Boy

David Wilson of Rise 2 Shine
David moving up the ladder: Lurgan entrepreneur David Wilson has become the poster boy for Bank of Ireland thanks to his fast growing business. David (34), who started cleaning windows at the age of 15, is now the manager of Rise 2 Shine, a firm which specialises in contract cleaning and refrigeration services as well as his window cleaning roots.

David explained how he got his foot on the ladder in the window cleaning business. He said: “I was 15 or 16 and I asked Bunty (Ian Bunting) if he knew of any work going. He told me to call at his house. He gave me a ladder and told me to wash his windows. After I did that he told me to go round the doors in Thornhill Park and see if anyone else wanted their windows cleaned. “That’s how I got started. I fell in with different contractors and the business grew and grew.”

David married Adele in 2007, but before getting married he ‘put the serious head on’. He explained: “I was living at home and had no bills or mortgage hanging over me so it was a casual business. “In 2007 before I got married I decided it was time to put the serious head on and set up a business that I could make a living off. “Four years ago I went to Bank of Ireland. The company was growing and I needed a bank to back me. I haven’t looked back since.”

He gave thanks to the bank for their backing, in particular Gareth Williamson, branch manager in Portadown. The upward trajectory of David’s Rise 2 Shine business led Bank of Ireland to ask him to feature in a nationwide poster campaign. David employs upwards of 40 people and his contract and refrigeration services carry out work for major supermarkets all over the UK. He said: “I don’t do the window cleaning anymore myself but we still clean windows for some of my original clients.”

Saturday 25 October 2014

Window Washer Electrically Shocked By WFP

The man was using a telescoping pole to wash a window when the pole came in contact with a power line above him carrying 115,000 volts, according San Bernardino City Fire’s preliminary investigation. Other window washers before have been electrocuted when using waterfed poles (wfp).
A man washing windows on a county building in San Bernardino suffered an electrical shock and caught fire Friday, Oct. 24, when his 30-foot-long pole came in contact with a power line. The man was in critical condition at Arrowhead Regional Medical Center in Colton at last report, San Bernardino city Fire Department Battalion Chief Nathan Cooke said Friday afternoon.

Firefighters responding to a report of a man on fire about 11:40 a.m. at 1365 S. Waterman Ave. found the victim suffering from serious burns, Cooke said. His telescoping pole had touched a line charged with 115,000 volts, Cooke said. The middle-aged man was working with a partner, who was not injured, Cooke said.

The incident happened at the Inland Regional Center, which serves people with developmental disabilities. The victim was believed to work for an independent contractor, Cooke said. The Occupational Health and Safety Administration and arson investigators were looking into the accident. Edison responded to cut off the electricity.

Cooke reminded anyone who sees a downed power line never to touch the line and to stay back and call 911. Electricity can jump 3 feet, Cooke said. Also, a person who touches another who has been shocked could also be injured, Cooke said.
Window Washer Critically Injured When Shocked on Job - Victim suffered serious burns to his hands and arms after he touched an electrical wire with cleaning equipment. A window washer was alert but severely injured with burns to his hands and arms after he touched an electrical wire with equipment in San Bernardino Friday and was transported to a local hospital in critical condition.

"Yeah it was scary," said witness Jose Cabrales. Cabrales works with the victim for Mr.Window window washing service. He said he was using a 30-foot pole to wash the windows on the third floor of an office building, when he heard an explosion. His co-worker was using a similar washing pole, and accidentally touched the high voltage lines that stretch across the business park.

He said the victim was frozen by electricity and couldn't let go of the fiberglass pole, until it disintegrated in his hands. The victim’s clothing also caught on fire as Cabrales ran to get help.

"When we arrived on scene, we saw numerous bystanders that were rendering aide and trying to keep the individual calm and keep him conscious throughout the ordeal," said Battalion Chief Nathan Cooke of the San Bernardino City Fire Department. Firefighters say its a miracle the victim didn’t die instantly because of the amount of electricity that ran though his body. "An electrical outlet is a 110, and this was 115,000 volts, so put into perspective," Cooke said. "That's a lot of power and electricity he contacted today."

Investigators, including Cal/OSHA, are now looking into the incident to see if any safety regulations were violated. The victim, who has not been identified, was hospitalized in critical condition. Witnesses said they hope the victim makes a full recovery. "My prayers are out to them out to his family and him," said San Bernardino resident Leticia Romero.

Friday 24 October 2014

Mole & Jersey - Season 3

Season 3 - now
Mole & Jersey - Season 3 - They're back, for another season of window cleaning & pressure washing madness. For the best viewing quality of the videos, please click on the youtube link at the bottom right of the video or go here to see all listed videos. Also a special bonus of their live video from the WCR event in Nashville this August just gone.

About Mole: Michael Mole is a germophobe & lives in Savannah, GA and is married to his best friend Heather. Michael has one kid, Zeke. Michael started cleaning windows in 2005, and opened his business in 2008. His company offers roof cleaning, pressure washing and window cleaning services. Michael loves hats (New Era 59Fifty, size 7 3/8) and Supra sneakers. He also loves Jersey Josh, though he struggles to show it. Michael’s snarky personality and brutally honest style is the best part of the Mole and Jersey Show, in his very humble opinion.

About Jersey: Jersey Josh lives in Racine, WI. His cool-as-a-cucumber persona is largely due to the freezing cold temperatures of the Great White North. Josh is married to Sarah, and together they have two daughters, Paige and Aubrey. Josh’s cleaning company offers window cleaning, pressure washing, roof cleaning and janitorial cleaning services. Josh loves to save money and be cheap. He is pretty sure that Mole secretly dislikes him. Josh is the “nice guy” of the Mole and Jersey duo. All good teams need a work-horse and a diva. Josh is the work-horse of the Mole and Jersey team.

Thursday 23 October 2014

Sitting On The Job

An Austrian window cleaner at work.
Sitting on the job: Spotted by a Dutch reader travelling through Zell am See, Austria, a window cleaner using a loader crane to lift himself to a height of around five metres. The man has fashioned himself a Bosuns chair out of steel and suspended it with some substantial looking slings from a loader crane, owned by Berge & Abschleppdienst. While not much safer than the wooden pallet on a forklift, the effort he has gone to avoid using what he has to hand, rather than purpose built access equipment is intriguing. Forgetting the safety aspect for a moment, this is hardly an economical piece of access equipment!

An Austrian window cleaner at work.
We cannot tell if he has a harness to keep him in, or if he has operated the crane with the remote controls or whether he has an accomplice – either way while we might admire his style, it definitely qualifies for our Death Wish series. 

Looks like yoga on the job.

Wednesday 22 October 2014

Window Cleaning News
The day in pictures around the world. Men dressed as comic book heroes Batman and Flash prepare to clean the glass facade of Hospital Infantil Sabara before meeting with patients of the children’s hospital in Sao Paulo.
A window cleaner works on the glass-pyramid of the Louvre museum in Paris. If the Socialist government gets its way, visitors to France's three most touristic museums — the Louvre, the Musee d'Orsay and Versailles Palace — may get to visit seven days a week in coming years. As part of the government's 2015 budget bill, the Culture Ministry announced this week it plans to give the museums the "necessary means" to open every day — as long as work and conservation conditions are respected.
Cal/OSHA to Investigate After Successful High-Rise Rescue: Two window washers whose platform had become stranded Oct. 1 at the 18th floor of an Irvine, Calif., building were successfully rescued through the cooperation of a Cal/OSHA senior safety engineer, the Tractel Inc. scaffolding company, and the Orange County Fire Department, according to a Cal/OSHA news release. The building is 19 stories tall.
The work begin done at 4 Park Plaza involved washers employed by Newport Window Cleaning. Wire rope suspending their platform frayed, making the rope too wide in diameter for the motorized pulley system to raise or lower it, according to the release, which says the safety engineer consulted with Tractel and advised the command chief of the Orange County Fire Department. They secured the workers on the platform with harnesses before raising the platform by hand up to the rooftop. The rescue operation was completed around 1 p.m.
Cal/OSHA will examine how the incident happened. "It is important that all industrial equipment be checked regularly for deficiencies," said Acting Cal/OSHA Chief Juliann Sum. "Cal/OSHA will be conducting an investigation into how the wire rope problems developed and why they were not identified before the ropes were put into use on Wednesday."
New details emerge of the wide range of part-time jobs taken on by police officers across England and Wales: Police officers are earning extra cash with a variety of part-time jobs including bee-keeping and playing the bagpipes, it has been disclosed. Lists of “approved business interests” compiled by the 43 forces in England and Wales showed some officers have enough time outside work to run companies and even pursue a whole different career. Another Pc on the force gave their interest as a “professional window cleaner.” 
Police officers in England and Wales work between 37 and 40 hours a week, depending on which force they are in, and constables can earn up to £36,519 a year. Many will earn considerably more through overtime payments. Sergeants can earn up to £41,000 and inspectors £51,000. Officers are allowed to take on other work or businesses if they do not damage their force’s reputation or affect their ability to report for duty.
American FM giant moves into UK: US facilities management company ABM has moved into the UK by acquiring GBM Support Services Group. GBM, based in London and Glasgow, has a £40m turnover and 2,000 employees, mostly in cleaning, security and janitorial services. ABM’s services include more technical building services engineering and maintenance. It is one of the largest facilities management contractors in the USA, with $4.8bn annual revenues. It started out in 1909 as a firm of San Francisco window cleaners.
“With the acquisition of GBM, we saw a tremendous opportunity to accelerate our growth strategy throughout the UK,” said ABM president and CEO Henrik Slipsager. “GBM is a great fit for our organization because its array of services complements ABM’s, and we’re confident this partnership will serve as a key platform for expanding internationally with new and existing clients.”
Business Growth Fund backs Nationwide Window Cleaning with £3m - Growth capital investment will expand fleet for fast-growing window cleaning business. The Business Growth Fund (BGF) today announced the completion of a £3m investment in Nationwide Window Cleaning (NWC), capping a period of strong growth for the window cleaning business.
Founded in 2009 by current managing director Thornton Tasker, NWC provides window cleaning and associated services to universities, hospitals, retailers and other large commercial businesses. Since foundation the Harrogate-based company has seen rapid growth, with turnover now approaching £10m and clients including RBS, Asda and the British Museum.
BGF’s £3m investment will allow the company to expand its fleet and fund new hires in its abseiling and specialist cleaning divisions, where it says it has experienced particularly strong demand. NWC said its ultimate target was to achieve a fivefold increase in revenue over the next seven years. As part of the deal, managing director of Altium Capital and former CEO of window manufacturer Stuart Lees will join the NWC board as non-executive chairman.
Thornton Tasker, managing director of NWC, said: “NWC is a truly national service provider offering a managed quality service with high visibility through leading edge IT. This is the right time to expand. Demand for our range of national specialist services continues to gain momentum and we are in a strong position to grow this part of the business. “We are delighted to be partnering with BGF. In addition to the investment, we value the insight and experience of its investment team as well as our newly appointed Chairman, Stuart Lees.”
Andy Gregory, regional director for the North of England and Northern Ireland at BGF, added: “This is the 63rd growth capital investment made by BGF in UK companies, and the 12th investment made in companies headquartered in the north of England. “Our aim is to work with enterprises that span a diverse range of industry sectors, and as such, we are delighted to be working with NWC.”
Ballots, Bulletins and More Keep Laminators and Temperers Busy: Both the laminating and tempering divisions of the Glass Association of North America (GANA) were hard at work when they met last week in Toronto for their Fall Conference. Each division discussed the progress and development of various documents and bulletins, as well as other resources.
In the laminating division, work is continuing on the laminated glass deflection table. The task group has been reviewing calculations for deflection testing of tempered glass, which will be used in the Tempering Division’s Engineering Standards Manual. The group is also looking into having similar data pulled for laminated glass mock-ups. Under new business, the Design Considerations for Laminated Glass Applications document is up for its five-year review and update. A task group is working on this and hopes to ballot any edits in about a month.
The group next went into subcommittee and task group reports. Work is continuing on the heavy glass door design guide. The task group is making progress and has been through the entire document once and is now going through it a second time to make sure all action items have been addresses. A task group is also working on the Guidelines for the Production of Heat-Treated Glass GIB. The document is going through its initial ballot.
Work also continues on the Heat-Soaking GIB. Cliff Monroe with Oldcastle Building Envelope®, who chairs the task group, said it’s a very technical document and they are trying to limit it to being just a GIB without being too technical. In other words, it would just explain heat soaking. A joint task group with the International Window Cleaners Association is also working to update the Proper Procedures for Cleaning Architectural Glass Products GIB.

Queen has plenty of job openings: Back of house manager (40 hours a week, salary £26-30,000). Windsor Castle. You may not get the same face-to-face time with world leaders as your front-of-house colleagues, but you will be doing the kind of unsung, nuts-and-bolts work keeping WC (that’s Windsor Castle) in good order. It’s up to you to boss around builders, electricians and window cleaners, as well as carrying out a rolling programme of repairs and improvements (the palace has been occupied for 1,000 years; there is bound to be wear-and-tear).
AFLAC Inc. (Aflac) announced the launch of its first original Spanish-language television commercial called "Heights."  According to the Company, Heights, which is completely designed for the Hispanic audience, will air nationally on major Spanish-language networks through late November 2014. As per the Company, the commercial focuses on two window-washers who are on a scaffold many stories above the ground. Aflac added that Heights reinforces the theme of "protecting your plans" as the two characters in the Commercial discuss what's most important to them - their families - and how Aflac can help if they are unexpectedly sick or hurt.
Ensuring the new office meets health and safety regulations: When selecting your new office, there were probably a range of considerations. But something you may not have factored in before signing the lease was whether it met health and safety regulations. Although any major risks are likely to be relatively obvious, there may be some smaller health and safety concerns that may not have initially sprung to mind.
Legally as an employer, you are obligated to ensure that the workspace you provide your employees meets a long list of requirements, which you can view in full here. I will list a few that you may have forgotten to consider. As an employer, you must provide: Window cleaning safety in the office: make sure all windows and skylights are designed and constructed so that they may be cleaned safely.

Logan Elsey opened Nixa-based Crystal Clear Window Cleaning in July.
Crystal Clear Window Cleaning (Nixa) - Owner: Logan Elsey. About the business: Logan Elsey says he’s known for a while he would much rather be an employer than an employee. “I kind of always wanted to start my own company, and I kind of always wanted to go about things for myself, be more independent,” Elsey says.
After some searching for business opportunities, Elsey decided to draw on his own experience and opened Crystal Clear Window Cleaning in July. Elsey previously worked for a Springfield-based window cleaning company with a friend. “The business model seemed relatively easy to me,” Elsey says. “After your initial tools are bought, that’s your biggest investment in it,” he says.
Elsey says his client base is a mixture of commercial and residential properties. In addition to window and screen cleaning, Elsey also cleans gutters and installs gutter guards. And, beginning in November, Elsey will hang and remove holiday lights. “It kind of makes up for some of the slow months in summer,” he says.
Elsey says he’s also ready to start bidding on much bigger projects. “I’m getting ready to go into the side of the industry I like most, which is rappel work. I’m trying to get more of those high-rise jobs,” he says. Elsey says despite the fact his business is relatively new, he’s happy about how the business is growing. “Probably one of my biggest customer transfers is, ‘Well, we like our guys, but they don’t show up on a regular basis,’” he says. “We provide a regular schedule for clients.”
Experience: Elsey worked for another window-cleaning business for about a year and a half before venturing out on his own. While he says he had no previous experience running his own business, he credits his business-owner dad and accounting software for keeping him on track. “QuickBooks has been just amazing for my business because otherwise, I probably wouldn’t be figuring it out so easy,” Elsey says with a big laugh.
Challenges: Elsey says cold calls to drum up business can be tough, “because you may be going into a business that may need your service or even desire your service but if you meet them when they’re busy, it makes it hard to make that connection,” Elsey says. But, he says, his ease with people typically wins the day.
Goals: Elsey hopes to have a crew of five full-time employees within a year. “I’m a firm believer that (the Springfield area) has been really good to me, so I’m a firm believer in giving back to those communities even if the only thing I can do is pay my employees well,” he says.

Video consulting  Long time, no see! As many of you are aware, I have sold my window cleaning business and entered the full-time ministry. My wife and I have moved to another city in Florida and we love it here. My principle task is fundraising, and it is going slowly. BUT, I continue to get contacted by people who want to start a window cleaning business for my advice. It gets me thinking of putting a few hours into consulting to make up for the revenue shortfall we are having right now.  In the past, I have discovered that people love me and my videos as long as it costs them nothing. Yes, a few have offered to pay, but it was not worth the effort I was putting in. But I recently got a Zoom account that allows me to do video chat with up to 25 people simultaneously. It got me thinking that such a “classroom” situation could be quite valuable because we all bring our experiences together and learn from each other as well.  So, that is what I want to know: are there people out there that would participate in a start-up class to get you to get you off your good intentions and actually start your business? Post it in the comment section or email me at Thank you
Don's window cleaning business startup site - Video consulting: Long time, no see! As many of you are aware, I have sold my window cleaning business and entered the full-time ministry. My wife and I have moved to another city in Florida and we love it here. My principle task is fundraising, and it is going slowly. BUT, I continue to get contacted by people who want to start a window cleaning business for my advice. It gets me thinking of putting a few hours into consulting to make up for the revenue shortfall we are having right now.
In the past, I have discovered that people love me and my videos as long as it costs them nothing. Yes, a few have offered to pay, but it was not worth the effort I was putting in. But I recently got a Zoom account that allows me to do video chat with up to 25 people simultaneously. It got me thinking that such a “classroom” situation could be quite valuable because we all bring our experiences together and learn from each other as well.
So, that is what I want to know: are there people out there that would participate in a start-up class to get you to get you off your good intentions and actually start your business? Post it in the comment section or email me at Thank you.

Secrets of the Waldorf Astoria Hotel: Jackie Collens and Jackie Carter, better known as "The Jackies," are the luxury suite specialists at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel, one of New York City's toniest addresses. The hotel encompasses an entire Midtown Manhattan block, spanning 49th to 50th Street from Park to Lexington Avenues. Of the 1,413 rooms, 181 are located in The Towers, occupying floors 27 through 42. And of those special rooms, 121 are historical suites. "It's an unheard of number," Collens says. "Most hotels have maybe 10 suites. And every single one of ours is different. The Towers is really a hotel within a hotel."
Because there are so many suites, the Jackies' dual positions were created so they could dish out advice while also meeting guests' wants and needs regarding accommodations. The Jackies took time out of their busy schedule to talk hotel history, the Waldorf's celebrity clientele, and some of its coolest secrets.
What's the most requested suite at the Waldorf? The Presidential Suite—it's where every President has stayed. When a president stays there, we have customized bulletproof glass installed. Herbert Hoover did the inaugural address when the hotel first opened in 1931. Since then, every president has stayed with us.  Your archivist positions are among 1,600 jobs at the Waldorf. What are some of the more unusual roles staffers serve? Because our windows are so heavy and hard to open, we have a special window opener; that's his only job. We also have a chandelier cleaner and a two full-time tour guides.
Spiderman dangles upside down to wave to patients at Sydney Children’s Hospital, Randwick -  Window washers dressed as spiderman and doctors and nurses and sports stars dressed as superman, catwoman, wonderwoman, captain america, batman and robin brightened up the day for dozens of sick children on Wednesday. The superhero-themed celebrations were part of the children’s hospital’s annual party bringing together hospital staff, patients and their families.
Maiysaa Haddad, 4, and Elena Norquay, 7, were thrilled when an upside-down spiderman crawled down her bedroom window. The activities began with batman arriving in his black batmobile before superhero window-washers abseiled down the outside of the hospital building. Superhero characters toured the wards visiting children while Capes 4 Australia workers hosted cape-making workshops. Children and their families shared a barbeque lunch with children’s group Hi-5 and Beak & Sons.
A Sydney Children’s Hospital spokeswoman said the annual party was all about having fun. “The event is exactly what it sounds like, a huge party for sick children and their families to provide some fun, laughter and respite during their often lengthy hospital stays,’’ she said. Each year, the Sydney Children’s Hospital cares for more than 78,000 seriously ill and injured children from across NSW and Australia. The hospital is one of the country’s leading centres in paediatric clinical and research excellence.
Window Washing Superheroes Bring Joy To Kids At Children’s Hospital (Pittsburgh): It was an awesome treat today for the kids at Children’s Hospital as they watched as superheroes repel down the side of the building. Their reactions were priceless, and boy, was it a sight for them to see.
People of all ages gathered outside and inside Children’s Hospital in Lawrenceville. They packed the sidewalks and snapped pictures as window washers from Allegheny Window Cleaning – dressed as Batman, Superman and Spider-Man – repelled down the front of the building to clean the windows.
“This is a great day for the kids,” said Edward Matuizek, of Allegheny Window Cleaning. “A lot of these kids won’t get out to trick-or-treat next week, but today makes their day and puts a smile on their face. It’s a great day here at Children’s Hospital.” “We first started it as something to do to make the kids happy, and now we do it every year,” said Ed Hetrick, one of the superhero window washers. “It turns out; it’s a fun thing to do. It’s great.”
Seeing Spider-Man, Batman, Captain America, Superman and Thor was indeed a treat. Many of the children are very sick, and certainly aren’t happy to be in the hospital. “My daughter is in here for chemo,” said Janice Emmerick. “She’s 19-years-old and she loves Batman. But she’s asleep, so I had to videotape it for her.” It was a magical day for all who witnessed this little act of kindness, and it goes to show a little can go a long, long way.

Superheroes ‘Drop by’ St. Joseph's Children's Hospital, NJ – Pediatric patients at St. Joseph’s Children’s Hospital (SJCH) in Paterson, New Jersey, were excited when ‘superheroes’ dropped by for a visit. St. Joseph's window washing vendor, Premier Building Services of Butler, New Jersey, sent Enrique Naranjo (Superman) and Juan Elizondo (Spider-Man) to make this window washing visit a special treat. Enrique and Juan repelled from the roof to wave, high-five and interact with the surprised children, parents and St. Joseph's staff as they washed the windows.
"Patients expect to see doctors, nurses and everyone else – but never superheroes,” said Michael Lamacchia, MD, Chairman, Pediatrics, SJCH, who was pleased with how the event unfolded. “This is something very special for our patients and the window washer superheroes did a great job. They really got involved with the kids,” Dr. Lamacchia added.
Issiah Alberto (age 8, Paterson), a pediatric patient, truly enjoyed the visit and showing off his best superhero moves. He lit up as he interacted with Spider-Man and Superman until they both swung off to the next rooms to continue their visits.

Early riser: Lisa made it out on her first attempt after strong winds deemed her first try too dangerous.
Don't look down: Lisa Snowdon is cheered on by Taylor Swift as she hangs 800 feet above ground to clean the Shard. The former model was cleaning the windows to raise money for Global’s Make Some Noise Day. Capital London Breakfast show host Lisa Snowdon swapped her mic for a sponge as she was suspended more than 800 feet up the Shard to clean the windows after co-host Dave Berry beat her in an on-air fundraising challenge.
The former model was competing against her co-presenter to raise money for charity, but was forced to don a safety harness and a bucket of water to clean the windows when she lost. As if she wasn’t nervous enough, the 42-year-old was unable to get outside on her first attempt due to high winds.
Taylor Swift and Dave Berry were tucked away inside as Lisa was finally able to board the lift and start her window cleaning duties a jaw dropping 75 floors up.
After planting her feet back on firm ground she tweeted: “Bloody hell!! I did it! It was pretty scary.” The stomach dropping stunt was in aid of Global’s Make Some Noise Day to raise money for disadvantaged children and young people across the UK. Global, the media and entertainment company, pulled together all of their stations including Heart, Capital FM, Classic FM, and Smooth for a morning of charity fundraising which has so far raised more than £700,000. Taylor Swift was challenged to beatbox in order to secure a £100 donation. The Shake it Off singer, who is famed for her pop music, stepped into hip hop territory to raise the money with the help of Dave Berry.
Window cleaners rescued by firefighters: Two window cleaners who were stuck in their cleaning cradle were rescued by fire fighters. When crews arrived at the incident they could see the cleaners approximately four to five floors up with no way of getting down. Using the turntable ladder from Temple Fire Station, crews were able to reach the pair and they were assisted into the cage and taken to safety. They were unharmed.

Tony’s boat, still afloat: Moruyas Tony Decourt found a hobby that floated his boat while living on a Canadian island as a child and, 63 years later, that boat is still afloat. Mr Decourt was born in Belgium, where, as he says, “there were no boats”. He migrated to Toronto Island, in Lake Ontario, with his father, brother and sisters at age 12. “It was a kid’s dream, living on an island,” he recalled. “An old shipwright gave me a wooden boat which needed repair and showed me how. “After school I would watch him work on boats and he became a friend.” It took Tony a whole season to fix that boat. “I needed to replace many of the planks, and I had to earn money by washing windows,” he said.
Lucy Moore, First World War project co-ordinator at the Leeds Museum Discovery Centre, says 1914 was a watershed moment in the story of women in this country. “What I find really interesting is that as soon as war was declared you get the wives of people who worked in factories setting up charities to help the other wives whose husbands had gone off to fight. So what you see is women stepping in and really being involved from the very beginning.” In Sheffield, women were working as tram drivers for the first time and across Yorkshire they were working as bus conductors, window cleaners and helping plough the fields to ensure the nation wasn’t starved into submission.

Fall Chores You Shouldn't Ignore - TALLAHASSEE, Fla. When the weather is crisp, leaves are falling and football is on TV, it can be easy to ignore fall chores. But if you want to stay cozy and avoid costly problems this winter, you better get to work. In this Angie's List report, the three projects every homeowner should cross off their checklist. Gutter cleaning isn't glamorous, but it's one of the most important jobs on any fall to-do list. Otherwise, the leaves there can mold… not to mention bugs. And whether you do it yourself or hire a pro, don't neglect the downspouts when cleaning. "You also want to make sure that all of your gutters are actually nailed in properly and look at your gutter boards and make sure that they are sealed," said handyman Elden Foltz. Once your gutters are clear, turn your attention to sealing drafts around windows and doors. Walk through your home with a lit candle or stick of incense to see where cold air is seeping in. otherwise you're losing heat… and money.

Corey, 50, is the owner of McKinnon's Irish Pub in downtown Hartford and a commercial window cleaning company called Advanced Services International. The company cleans the windows of some of Hartford's tallest skyscrapers. Relatively new at politics, the Republican says new faces and ideas are needed to tackle what both candidates say ails the 1st District: a faltering economy and the need for new jobs.
“Each time I went to vote, I looked at the ballot and there were the same people on it, year after year after year,” said Corey, who lives in Manchester.
The race of the 1st District seat has been overshadowed by more high-profile political contests in the state this year, especially the contest between Gov. Dannel Malloy and Republican Tom Foley. But it  still offers voters a clear choice between candidates who have both grown up in the district but split when it comes to political philosophies. Pictured - Republican challenger Matthew Corey, second from right in front, with his window cleaning staff.
Cleaning scheme Orsima in merger talks with industry-wide fund: Pensioenfonds Orsima, the €60m pension fund for the Dutch industrial cleaning sector, is negotiating a merger with the €2.9bn scheme for the cleaning and window cleaning industry, BPF Schoonmaak. In its newsletter, the board of Orsima said that negotiations to merge on 1 January 2015 were already at an advanced stage. It explained that the most important reasons of the intended merger were the scheme’s comparatively high costs per participant and its vulnerability due to its size. Administration costs per member amounted to €937 last year, according to its annual report. Its ultimate decision to opt for the Pensioenfonds voor het Schoonmaak- en Glazenwassersbedrijf, was based on the combination of its contribution level, Schoonmaak’s financial policy, the quality of its provider as well as its indexation potential, it pointed out.
Preparing houseplants for winter months ahead: With temperatures expected to drop into the 40s and 50s, now is the time to bring your tropical plants and houseplants back indoors to protect them from the upcoming cold weather. Most tropical plants suffer at temperatures below 40 degrees; a few are damaged below 50 degrees. Because temperature, light, and humidity vary widely between the inside and outside of your home, a gradual reintroduction to the indoors is best. A sudden change in light may cause yellowed leaves, dieback and leaf drop. Prepare for your houseplants by cleaning your windows, both inside and out, to ensure plants can get adequate light. Gradually expose your plants to less light by placing them indoors where they can get the brightest light possible, usually a south-facing window or under plant lights on a timer for 16 hours a day. After a few weeks you can move the plant to its permanent home.

CBD rooms at a premium as Jehovah's Witnesses flock to Melbourne for convention: So why would the cost of a city hotel room in mid-October rival prices set during some of the nation's biggest sporting events? The Jehovah's Witnesses are coming to town. About 70,000 of them. From next week, pilgrims from the Christian denomination best known for door-to-door preaching will descend on Melbourne from 60 countries for their largest-ever gathering in Australia.
The three-day convention at Etihad Stadium marks the centennial of Jehovah's Witnesses' belief that Jesus Christ began ruling God's kingdom in 1914. Worshippers also believe Satan has ruled the world since being cast out of heaven. Highlights of the holy event include a "full water immersion" mass baptism and theatrical productions of Bible stories. Organisers say the attendees are tipped to break the Docklands stadium's attendance record and will inject $50 million into the local economy.
Airlines have already flagged the possibility of scheduling more flights and the public transport system is gearing up for a busy weekend, running 14 extra trains and more trams on busy routes.
Window cleaner Mike Swan and his wife Ruth, both Jehovah's Witnesses, will move out of their two-bedroom unit in Hadfield during the conference so family from Queensland have somewhere to stay.
Mr Swan said the group of seven relatives could not afford accommodation even though they started looking last October. "It was very difficult for them to find accommodation and in a price range that would allow them to bring the children," he said. Cheap accommodation at backpackers hostels has reached capacity, with the last bed in Discovery Melbourne's 18-person shared dorm selling for $46 a night. All private rooms and dorms with a communal bathroom at the Franklin Street hostel are sold out during the conference.
WINDOW CLEANING. Court members signed a contract with Hoffman’s Yes-We-Do Cleaning to provide annual window cleaning services for $2,985.00. The bid opening and award had been done last week. MSP: Myers/Labhart -- to circulate for signature the Contract for Goods and Services Less Than $5,000.00 with Hoffman’s Yes-We-Do Cleaning to provide annual window cleaning services for a total amount of $2,985.00.

Ahmad Rouleau and fighting ISIS in a Quebec town - ISIS arrived in Canada driving a brown Nissan Altima. There we all were, worrying about obscene Dark Ages beheadings on the other side of the ocean and rogue terrorists seizing military planes in Syria. What we got was something terrifying in its surreal ordinariness, a failed window cleaner with a spotty background who spent way too much time on social media looking for salvation.
The new face of terror is a young father locked in a custody dispute, a Quebecer raised in the Montérégie, who bought his ticket to paradise and posthumous notoriety by slamming his car into two soldiers on a Monday morning in a parking lot in his hometown of St. Jean-sur-Richelieu. One of those officers, Patrice Vincent, 53, died late Monday. The other remains in hospital with what are described as minor injuries.
Though friends insisted Couture Rouleau was harmless, authorities and his own relatives had obviously worried enough about his behaviour — the strange posts on Facebook, the kinds of people he followed on Twitter — to seize his passport when he tried to travel to Turkey this summer. Tuesday night, the RCMP detailed how closely they had been monitoring his behaviour, meeting with Couture Rouleau frequently, as recently as Oct. 9. The initial response from Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard, who has lived in the Middle East, was more restrained. Yet even he, speaking to reporters very late Monday night as hopes for Vincent’s survival faded, raised the grave concerns posed by the lures of fundamentalism.
Review Bang Bang - Getting back to the story, Omar Zafar escapes from the holding cell by killing the entire building full of trained, professional agents with the help of a bunch of his henchmen dressed as window cleaners. Guess they cleaned logic along with the windows. Oh fun fact he also kills an Indian Colonel, Viren Nanda (Jimmy Shergill in a cameo) and sets up the stage for the diamond heist by announcing a reward of 5 million dollars for anyone stealing the diamond except for the fact the thief should be an Indian there by souring the relations between India and UK leading to the cancellation of the new extradition treaty. Omar Zafar ever heard of the phrase that life is only as complicated as we make it, I am sure there would have been many other options to sour the relations but Omar Zafar went with the most far fetched one.
Kate Steele, who sadly passed away in April last year, had a lifelong ambition to write children’s books. Kate (known to her family as Cath) was a mother, grandmother and primary school teacher and was diagnosed with cancer in 2008. During her treatment, she made the decision to leave a lasting legacy for her grandchildren and it’s from this that the idea for the ‘Pop’ book series was born. ‘Pop’ is based on the real life adventures of Kate’s husband Martin, otherwise known as ‘Pop’. Her family decided to pursue the publishing of the stories, which were written for and dedicated to Kate’s grandchildren. The hero in the “Pop” books is a white-haired, window cleaning grandfather, who is described as having “a timely habit of saving animals in distress.”

Jessie J has sold her glass house in Surrey because her pesky fans could see her in it: Jessie J has sold her glass house in Surrey. Why did J-J-Jessie J buy a glass house in Surrey? We don’t know. We can only imagine the window cleaning bills were astronomical. But the ex-judge from The Voice has revealed that she had to sell the glass house because those bloomin’ fans of her wanted to look at her through the glass, like she was in a little Jessie J zoo, where there’s only one animal, and it’s Jessie J, sat on a toilet. Speaking to Alan Carr on Chatty Man, she said: "I bought a house in Surrey. It was all made of glass. Now Jessie has revealed her plans to move to America, perhaps because you can do barmy things like buy a massive glass house and no one will harass you. She said: "In America they see me as a singer whereas here I feel that people don't appreciate my voice. I've dedicated my life to singing and I want it to be taken seriously.

Will you marry me...?
A runner who proposed to his volunteer girlfriend on stage in front of hundreds just minutes after completing the first Chelmsford Marathon, had planned to do it at the cancelled Hylands Park concerts. Window cleaner and running coach Carl Easton arranged for an announcer to usher Diana Baker on stage, before the 48-year-old grabbed the microphone and dropped down to one knee. Diana, from Chelmsford, answered with a tearful “yes” before she returned to handing out medals to finishers. “It was a huge surprise, I was not expecting it at all, and I’m still in shock,” said Diana, 42, who was volunteering for marathon organisers The J’s Hospice.
“It was very strange returning to handing out the medals because everyone who had finished and was volunteering knew what had happened, but those who finished hadn’t got a clue. But I just carried on doing what I was asked to do. “I really didn’t have a clue what was going on when I was asked on stage. Of course, I’m very happy now.”
Carl, who has been with Diana since July last year, planned to propose on stage at the Flashback Festival in Hylands Park in September, but the event was cancelled by UK Events & Production. But he set out with 11-year-old son Todd on Saturday to buy the ring, without Diana, leaving her in a “hump” all day. “She had the hump all day and all evening, it was very funny, but I couldn’t turn around and tell her the reason,” said Carl, who finished the 26.2 miles in an impressive 3:41:53. “I don’t think I was nervous when I was proposing. “The adrenaline was still settling in from finishing the marathon so, no, I don’t think I was really nervous. “I was about 90 per cent sure she would say yes. It was the right decision clearly.”

County to spend $500,000 to replace faulty windows in DSS building: Less than 15 years after it opened, the Social Services building on Ramsey Street needs almost 1,000 new windows. Cumberland County will spend more than $500,000 to replace every window on the north side of the $22 million building, which opened in 2000. The windows were improperly installed. Now they're failing, and the resulting moisture is damaging the interior, county officials said. "It's getting worse," Jeffery Brown, the county's engineering and infrastructure director, recently told the county Facilities Committee. "If we don't correct that, it's just going to continue to get worse."
The windows on the building's north side are flush with the exterior wall. Brown said the windows are designed to allow water to get between the two panes. That water is supposed to drain away, but the improper installation blocked those drains. Condensation lingers within many of the windows. On the lower floors, ceiling plaster hangs from around some of them. "Now we have water damage inside the building," Brown said, "so we've got to do something."
The problems were first noted in 2010 by the county engineer at the time, said County Attorney Rick Moorefield. The manufacturer and installer of the windows blamed each other until it was determined the installer was at fault, he said. Moorefield said there's no way the county can recover any money. "The company that installed it is out of business," he said. "There's just no one to go against. Believe me, we've looked at all these angles. This didn't just come up in the last couple of months."

Thieves steal teddy bears and ransack grave of a stillborn baby girl: The parents of a baby girl who was stillborn have been left devastated after her grave was ransacked and teddy bears stolen. Amber Bouckley and Stuart Parsons were horrified to discover thieves had taken seven cuddly toys placed around daughter Sophia’s headstone. They had visited her grave, itself teddy bear shaped, in Bredbury’s Highfield Cemetery on October 2.
Now the couple from Offerton are appealing for the items to be returned and for information about who may be responsible. Amber, 24, said: “We put the bears at the grave at milestones like Christmas and birthdays as it was something to get her but all except one have been taken. “They aren’t even worth much in money but they are very sentimental to us. “What happened will always be with us and now this. To do this to any grave is horrible but to what is clearly a baby’s grave is even worse.  “I just think it is disgusting, how could someone do this? A lot of people go through the cemetery and walk their dogs, hopefully someone will have seen something.”
As well as the bears decorative angels had been placed around the grave but these had been ripped off and strewn around the cemetery. The couple, of Marlhill Close, had not visited the grave in five weeks so are not sure exactly when it happened. Stuart, 29, a self-employed window cleaner, broke his ankle so they had not been able to travel to the cemetary. They have a son, Bobby, aged one, and Amber has a son Mackenzie, nine, from a previous relationship. Inspector Steve Palmer, from Stockport east area neighbourhood police, said: “This is absolutely despicable and will not be tolerated, we want to catch those responsible.”

Community stalwart Tommy Jeffers dies suddenly in France: The Irvine window cleaner who was devoted to the community passed away during a walking holiday in Voisins, he was 72. “He was dead before he hit the floor,” were the words Christine Jeffers describes her last seconds with husband Tommy. The couple, who were representing Irvine in a town exchange to Voisins in France were enjoying a lunch in a restaurant when Tommy suddenly fell to the floor. Now, Christine is left hoping her husband’s body comes home this Thursday. “I just want him home in Scotland,” said Christine, of Thornhouse Avenue, Irvine. “It’s frustrating that we think it is a heart attack that killed him but in France they don’t tell you what happens, it is private. “We are hoping to know more when he comes home.”
The couple had been enjoying walking with their French twin town counterparts when the tragedy happened. “As usual Tommy was the life and soul and making friends with the French people as he raved about Irvine to them. “He was so proud of Irvine and he never dreamed of moving away, he loved the Carters’ Society, the Folk Club and the Twin Town group. He lived for Irvine and his family and he was so well known, people were always telling me that I was a lucky woman to have him as my husband.
PORT ANGELES — City staff says a preliminary audit of 2014 Port Angeles Downtown Association finances has revealed a lack of invoices, no reasons for expenditures and unexplained spending on bottled water, teacups and latex gloves. “A number of serious issues and concerns were identified by the city regarding the financial activity and/or financial reporting of the PADA,” City Manager Dan McKeen said Sept. 26 in a two-page audit cover-letter to the association's board of directors. The audit examined $93,412 in revenues and $67,611 in expenses between Jan. 1 and July 31, Byron Olson, the city's chief financial officer, said Thursday. The review was based on an examination of 142 random PADA payments made in 2014. “Sundance window cleaners — paid $250, but the attached invoice was only for $214.
Dad turned to drugs to fund custody battle: A desperate Oldham dad turned to crime to earn money after spending a fortune on legal fees in a custody battle over his young son. Matthew Kenyon (27), whose relationship with the boy’s mother had failed, spent £20,000 on solicitor fees. He was at the point of a custody bid but a suspended prison sentence for drug dealing might now have dashed his hopes. Kenyon, of Lauren Close, was given a 12-month sentence, suspended for 18 months, at Manchester Crown Court after pleading guilty to possession of cannabis with intent to supply. He was given a further three-month sentence, to run concurrently, for being armed with a knuckle duster.
Sentencing him, Judge Timothy Mort told him: “This is a desperately sad case. It must be marked with a custodial sentence, which I feel able to suspend, but the irony is that by your actions you have jeopardised your fight for rights to be with your son.” The court heard how Kenyon and his 24-year old girlfriend Jessica Houghton had been arrested in Oldham after a chance sighting by police of what they suspected was a street drug deal. A search of their car found bags of cannabis, mobile phones and cash. A search of Kenyon’s home revealed more drugs, phones, cash and a debtors’ list.
Michael Hopkinson, defending, said Kenyon had been a “very foolish man indeed,” stumbling into drugs while on a window-cleaning round. Mr Hopkinson said his client had gone to desperate lengths to obtain ready cash to fund his legal fight over his young son. Kenyon was ordered to carry out 140 hours of unpaid community work. Houghton, of Deepdale Avenue, Royton, was given a 12-month community order and 80 hours of unpaid work.
Window cleaner charged with fraud: A window cleaner has been charged with fraud and stealing wood and boxes.  John Burrows, 42, of Athelstan Road, Hastings, allegedly committed the offences at an address in Saxon Road, Hastings, on April 22. He is accused of fraud by false representation in relation to some repair work carried out at the address, and burglary, by stealing wood and boxes from the address. Burrows is due to appear at Hastings Magistrates’ Court next Wednesday (October 29).
A window cleaner from Weymouth who had been suffering from depression took his own life, a coroner has ruled. An inquest into the death of Peter Robin Bradley at County Hall in Dorchester was told the 45-year-old had been struggling after suffering an injury at work and was also finding a search for new accommodation stressful. The body of Mr Bradley was found in his bedroom at his home in Dorchester Road by Luke Mundy, who also lived at the address, on August 12.
He had last been seen on the evening of August 10 but the inquest was told he had kept himself to himself and it was not unusual for him to spend time in his room. Mr Bradley’s father Robin said his son had ‘suffered from bouts of depression for quite a few years’. He had also suffered a broken nose and elbow in an accident at work in January and was faced with having to move from his current accommodation.
The inquest was told he saw the Weymouth Community Mental Health Team after a previous suicide attempt on July 18 that he had felt unable to go through with. When he was assessed Mr Bradley said he had recognised reasons for living and was too scared to make another attempt on his life. He was deemed to no longer be at risk of suicide, however, he was found hanged at his address less than a month later. Coroner for Dorset, Sheriff Payne, said: “The verdict I record is that he has taken his own life, that he has committed suicide.” The coroner expressed his sympathies to Mr Bradley’s family.

Man jailed for trying to blow up ex-wife’s home after he learned she was going to re-marry: A divorced husband has been jailed for trashing his ex wife’s home and trying to blow it up after he learned she was going to re-marry. Mark Bridgeman used a large hunting knife to slash furniture and switched on all the gas hobs to fill the former marital home with gas after barging his way in past his terrified ex wife Rebecca. She had been warned he was on his way to her home by the head teacher of a local primary school who had seen the knife after Bridgeman arrived during lessons and demanded to see a pupil. He told head David Barnett:”I am going to see her and I’ve got this” before moving a newspaper to reveal the green handled knife on the passenger seat.
Bridgeman caused almost £6,000 damage at Rebecca’s home where he went berserk after seeing the front room festooned with balloons and cards marking her engagement to another man, Exeter Crown Court was told. He smashed windows, wrecked the television, broke furniture and slashed to sofa. He tried to fill the house with gas and told police:”I was going to blow the whole place up but only take myself.” Former window cleaner Bridgeman, aged 36, of Reynell Close, Newton Abbot, admitted having a knife in the grounds of a school and in the street outside his ex wife’s house.
Wolverhampton man accused of attempted murder denies stabbing window cleaner: A man accused of attempted murder has denied stabbing a window cleaner outside a pub in Perton. Liam Phipps told jurors he never touched a knife the night Shaun Bayliss was stabbed five times as violence erupted outside the Wrottesley Arms. Mr Bayliss was rushed to hospital with wounds to his back and chest. But giving evidence at Stafford Crown Court, Phipps said Mr Bayliss either had no idea who stabbed him or was blaming the wrong man.

An ‘incompetent’ thief from Padiham – caught in the act trying to load a trail bike into the boot of a Fiat Punto – has been jailed for 12 months. Bike owner Paul Chester and his partner Alicia Cryer were awoken by loud noises at their Altham Street home just before midnight on August 22, Burnley Crown Court was told. When they looked out of the window they saw two men trying to load Mr Chester’s trail bike into the back of a waiting car, the court heard. Prosecutor Richard Archer said that when the couple went outside, Martin Carroll was seen to throw the bike to the ground and flee in the car.
But Carroll and his accomplice were recognised by the pair and the police were alerted shortly afterwards. Mr Archer said that 10 days previously Carroll, a part-time window cleaner, had appeared before the crown court to receive a suspended prison sentence. The Lancashire Tele-graph reported in August how he brandished a foot-long carving knife at the mother of his child and threatened to stab her if he was not allowed into her house. Carroll, 32, of Longton Road, admitted attempted theft and breaching a suspended sentence order.
Nick Dearing, defending, said his client accepted he had been ‘extremely fortunate’ when he received the suspended sentence. Carroll had made attempts to be abstinent and it was a ‘source of great disappointment’ that he had carried out the attempted theft while under the influence. “It is unlikely that they would have been likely to get a bike of that size in the boot of that car, which indicates how incompetent this act was,” he added.

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