No matter how far you roam, those with Torbay in their hearts will always remember the Naturally Inspiring Bay with affection.

Then: Fran Harper as a Torquay schoolgirlThen: Fran Harper as a Torquay schoolgirl

The Torbay Weekly is reaching a global audience, with subscribers to our digital editions coming from all corners of the world, including Spain, USA, Zimbabwe, Australia and more.

One reader living in Melbourne, Australia, is Fran Harper, who grew up in Babbacombe and keeps up with community news through Torbay Weekly.

“My roots and heart are very strongly in Torbay,” said Fran. “I grew up in St Anne’s Road and my father owned Neptune Seafoods. I went to Priory School in St Marychurch, Torquay Girls’ Grammar School and did my sixth form at KEVIC in Totnes.

“I keep in touch with many of my old school mates - and normally when I’m home, which up until Covid was three to four times a year, we all meet at the Eastern Eye - where I’ve been going for 35 years.”

Fran moved to Australia in 1997 after meeting up with a childhood sweetheart and has found great success working alongside her sister Ali as global head of sales and marketing at Paramount 21, exporting premium frozen goods across the Asia Pacific region.

“I mentor CEOs exporting to the Asia Pacific region,” said Fran. “I was formerly on the board of Rugby Victoria that owns the Super Rugby team The Melbourne Rebels and also president of Power House RUFC in Melbourne and Ali is now chairman of Plymouth Albion.

“My younger sister Kirstie also works in the business and my other younger sister Kim owns and runs Polgoon Vineyard in Penzance with her husband John Coulson, who is also from Torbay.

“My eldest daughter Annie is a paediatrician at the children’s hospital in Melbourne but felt the bonds of Torbay enough to arrange her final year placement at Torbay Hospital and actually worked with the surgeon who delivered her.”

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