In 1986 Rosemary discovered a low-fat diet plan, which transformed her body in a way she had never been able to achieve with previous diets.
Rosemary put her experiences down on paper and the result was her Hip and Thigh Diet, which was published in 1988 and captured the attention of the nation. This book and its sequel, Rosemary Conley’s Complete Hip and Thigh Diet, have sold more than two million copies.
Subsequent books and DVDs have seen similar spectacular success, despite being in such a highly competitive market place, with total worldwide sales fast approaching over nine million.
In 1993, Rosemary and her husband and business partner, Mike Rimmington, launched Rosemary Conley Diet & Fitness Clubs to give additional help, support and motivation to people following her diet and fitness programmes. The national network of clubs is a franchise operation, with 170 professionally qualified exercise teachers currently running 2,000 weekly classes across the UK for over 70,000 members.
Just two years after its launch, the British Franchise Association presented Rosemary Conley Diet & Fitness Clubs with its Newcomer of the Year Award and, in 1998, the organisation was presented with the national BFA/Midland Bank Award. In 2002 and 2005, it won the coveted BFA Franchisor of the Year Award.
In 1996, the Rosemary Conley Diet & Fitness magazine was launched. This award-winning publication has more than half a million readers and became market leader in its sector after just three issues. The magazine contains celebrity interviews, diet and exercise plans, expert columnists and the Fat File, a unique sliding scale guide to the fat and calorie content of food.
From 1996 to 2000 Rosemary was a consultant to Marks & Spencer and helped them to develop their low fat, calorie-controlled food range.
Rosemary has presented her own TV Series on BBC and ITV as well as appearing on ‘This Morning’ with Richard and Judy for seven years. She continues to have a high media profile with many regular appearances on national television. Rosemary’s latest appearance was on ITV1’s Dancing on Ice, where, at 65 years old, she was the oldest celebrity to make it the furthest in the history of Dancing on Ice – an outstanding achievement.
In December 2001, Rosemary was granted the Freedom of the City of Leicester, the first woman to receive this honour.
Rosemary was one of the invited guests at a reception at Buckingham Palace hosted by Her Majesty The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh in October 2003 to mark the contribution of Pioneers to the life of the nation.
Rosemary Conley was delighted to be made a Commander of the British Empire (CBE) in the New Year’s Honours for 2004, for her services to the fitness and diet industries.
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