SEVEN DAWNS REMAIN before Bamps-the-Blog wakes to his 70th birthday gift of an all but free prescription for exercising at Evolution - Perins’ community campus health and fitness suite - as authorised by Doctor Beanstoke’s general practice beside the Victorian station for steam locomotion, and opposite the flickering blue light of the county constabulary’s part-time watch over the self-styled watercress capital of the world.

Evolution’s team promises the septuagenarian grandfather18 pieces of cardio-vascular equipment, six resistance machines, free weights and a sprung-floor studio for fitness classes and dance to set him on his merry way to better health and well-being.

A community campus pledge to pensioners spells out: ‘We are on hand to give help and advice with your one-to-one induction course, personal fitness program and regular assessments, while priding ourselves on a relaxed and friendly atmosphere that creates a great place for you to meet new friends.’

“Don’t you believe a word of it,” cautions Mrs Rees.

Someone who chats to mostly everyone out and about the East, West and Broad Streets of her all but inflation-proof Georgian town patrolled by brown trout, and where her back-slapping son Paul - self-acclaimed professional tap dancer and pogo stick trainer - presents as ‘bitch’ and ‘leading light’ of Alresford-on-Arle’s rugby football club.

His Welsh-born ma believes: “They humiliate the elderly, they do. Youngsters laugh at them using the gym’s equipment, machines and weights. But more and more you hear tell of one doctor after another at Alresford Surgery handing out prescriptions for our senior citizens to want to exercise at their town’s swank but understaffed health and fitness suite - and now you.’

It is all of two years since the town hack caught up with tales of how Cressroads’ alternative Doc Greenfingers was finding time between surgery hours to moonlight as a physiotherapist to the billionaire Russian aluminium oligarch Premier League’s Chelsea Football Club.

Who better, then - or a steal at the expense of Britain’s National Health Service - for a diagnosis of the cause of Blogsbody's developing aches, groans and pains.

“Well, doctor?”

“Too many birthdays,” smiled Doc Green.

“A great line to plagiarise … itself making it worth an appointment … but?”

“But try Glucosamine and Chondroitin. Fifteen hundred milligrams daily. Except not available to you on the NHS. And reckon on three months for it to treat your cartilage,” the celebrity GP handed Blogsbody an autographed note to the Wessex pharmacist for the first of hundreds of tiny tabs costing the town hack upwards of £9 every 40 days, through until his sight of a recent report in the British Medical Journal.

An article recounting the findings of a Swiss study rubbishing any imagined value of tabs recommended to millions of ageing, seriously aching bodies - writing off the best-selling health product as an utter waste of their old age pension - and losing Blogsbody to thoughts of making alternative medicine of getting his wayward leg over the crossbar of a second-hand mountain bike.

First to exercise his stubborn bodily parts into pedalling his well-oiled Raleigh - going-going-gone and snapped up by the town hack for £35 at last Thursday’s market on fashionable Broad Street - then, after as many as 42 workouts over six weeks for a token fee of £1-a-session, looking to cycle from his dysfunctional Lower House of Windsor into the ever welcoming Arms of Tichborne less than three miles distant.

Health Warning: Forever and a pint sees Blogsbody change up a geriatric gear or two towards improving his health and fitness, and for Britain’s oft snooty watercress capital of the world to continue to curse its town hack for his many a yarn yet to come. -

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