An idea?

I read this article in the Daily Mail at my parents house last evening. Just deciding if I can pinch any ideas.

How a cash-strapped teacher beat credit crunch by living on £1 a day for a YEAR after drunken bet.
Anyone finding it hard to cope with the credit crunch will find little sympathy from teacher Kath Kelly.

The cash-strapped teacher had an alcohol-induced wager with friends that she could beat the credit crunch by living on just £1 a day for a whole year - and won.

Miss Kelly, 47, ate at free buffets, shopped at jumble sales and scavenged food discarded by grocery stores and restaurants.

She picked fruit from bushes and trees and collected £117 in loose change dropped in the street - a third of her annual budget.

She even managed a free trip to France by hitchhiking through the Channel Tunnel.

And to cap it all, she found love while working as a volunteer on an organic farm during the holidays.

Miss Kelly was sharing a house in Hotwells, Bristol, when she complained to her friends over a few glasses of wine that she could not afford a wedding present for her brother Danny.

She boldly announced that she would survive on £1 a day for the 12 months up to the wedding.

'I woke up the following morning and instantly regretted it but it was too late - I'd told my friends and now I had to go through with it.'

With her rent and utility bills already paid for the year, her budget had to cover transport, food, clothes and socialising.

She soon learned to spot a bargain and after working at the English Language Centre in Clifton, where she teaches for 20 hours a week, she regularly visited super-markets and butchers at closing time to buy reduced food.

She added: 'I had a freezer full of stuff. I was out all the time with a bag on my back and if I saw bread for 10p at the end of the day, or reduced vegetables - anything - I bought it.'

Miss Kelly would hunt down market researchers in the street as they often have samples to give away.

She ditched her mobile phone and cycled to friends' houses if she wanted to speak to them, leaving a note if they were out.

She used the library for free internet access and developed a taste for mince pies - which she would stockpile at Christmas when they are given away at stores.

'I went to the public lectures at Bristol University that had a buffet afterwards, and I went to the library's 100th birthday where they had a buffet as well. I was the queen of the buffet.

'Every time there was a public event and a crowd was needed, I was there.

'I dragged my mates out to free events, too.

'I couldn't buy rounds at the pub or anything like that so I'd take them to art openings and book launches.'

Miss Kelly says one of her best tips is to hand out small gifts where you can - what you receive in return will usually be of a greater value.

Her trip to France came when she decided to visit her brother, who was restoring a house in Brittany.

'I hitchhiked to the Channel Tunnel, got a free ride as the passenger of a French woman and hitched to Brittany,' she said.

'On the way back I travelled on the ferry with a lorry driver, and even had dinner at the drivers' canteen.'

By the end of the year Miss Kelly was able to use some of the £10,000 salary she had banked to spend £1,300 on a lifetime membership to the National Trust for Danny and his bride Sarah.

She had also formed a relationship with 38-year-old Bruce Taylor, manager of the farm where she worked as a holiday volunteer.

The couple now live together in Bruton, Somerset, and Miss Kelly has written a book about her year of living frugally - How I Lived On Just A Pound A Day, published by Redcliffe at £6.99.

She now grows her own fruit and veg, and says the experiment has changed her outlook.

'I'm a lot more sensible with my money now and live a completely different lifestyle.


  1. I wonder when this book will be at the library, I might be able to pinch some ideas.

    Is it good to have hubby home Lizzie?

  2. I just tried Amazon to find it but no sign yet. If I was really frugal I guess I should have checked the library first, you are better at this than I am, for sure.

    It is, but its also strange because 103 days is long enough to have all sorts of new habits, and being able to do exactly what you like all the time is one that I seem to have picked up. I can't beleive he doesnt want to go to bed at 8pm to watch an entire DVD of Jamie at Home - how could he find that odd. And would you beleive I have just sat through Rambo!!

  3. It's on Amazon to order for about £8.98!! I'm not paying that

    oh no, not Rambo. It's my husbands favourite, I refuse to watch it :)

  4. BookRabbit have the book on advance order for £6.99 (and they have free delivery on any order of £10 and above). There are alternatives to Amazon!

  5. I google amazon & her name & came up without anything. Strange.
    Oh yes, too much definitely.
    Kathleen, I have never heard of Book Rabbit, Iwill check it out...but must not buy!



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