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TGtB Meets...Vicky Heslop - International Women's Day Special

In celebration of International Women's Day on March 8th we chatted to Bath Ladies Tighthead Prop Vicky Heslop.

Which woman would you compare yourself to?

Ooh, tricky! No-one really. I’m just myself.

What would you say is your most valuable skill and why?

Tenacity. The ability to not give up, despite what people throw at you.

Why do you think it's important to have an International Women's Day?

To remember, recognise and honour the women who fought (and continue to fight) for women to have equality in their communities and societies.

Do you have family (and/or children)? How do you maintain a work/life balance?

My family live 100 miles away so I don’t get to see them as much as I’d like. My second family are my rugby team-mates. It’s tricky to have a work/life balance because I love my job and it takes a lot of my time.

Have you ever had to give up or miss out on anything in order to pursue your career?

Of course, everybody has to make sacrifices in one area to benefit another. Time with my family, time with friends. I think this is the same for both women and men though.

Do you ever experience any discrimination in the work place because of your gender?

As a woman working in a male-dominated but open-minded sport, you can often come across ‘accidental’ discrimination – such as going into a school and people asking ‘when do the rugby players/coaches get here?’  or people asking male colleagues if they play for Bath Rugby. I sometimes get surprised looks when I point out that they don’t play for Bath Rugby but I do…

Based on your own experiences, what advice would you give to fellow females looking to get into your profession?  

In the words of Paul Cookson:Let no one steal your dreams, your only limit is the sky.” If you believe in yourself, other people will too.

Do men ever feel intimidated by your success?

I suppose lots of people are intimidated by other people’s success, both male and female. I have experienced this a lot at all levels. You just can’t let it stop you.

If you could have dinner with 5 inspirational women dead or alive, who would they be?

  • Marie Curie
  • Hilary Clinton
  • My Gran
  • My Mum
  • My Sister

As a successful female, where do you see yourself in 10 years’ time?

Setting a good example for the next generation of strong women, and continuing to make people’s lives better every day.

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