Findon couple named best parents in the UK: this is why
A Findon couple have been crowned as the best parents in the UK.
Rin and Robin Gamble won Britain’s Best Parent, a five-part series on Channel 4 in which mums and dads with different styles battled it out for the title.
Tai Chi and meditation teacher Robin, 38, said they were ‘stunned’ that their Eastern-influenced raising of Gabriel, eight, and Jasmine, seven, clinched the top spot.
He said: “We were both very, very surprised and really humbled. We just crack on with our style; it isn’t that typical but people liked it.”
Rin was contacted about the documentary through a mailing list she had joined for child modelling for their kids.
Despite her husband’s initial reservations about getting involved, the 39-year-old director of a construction materials company made an impassioned speech over the dinner table that won him over.
“She said we are trying hard and what we are doing seems to work,” Robin recalled. “If someone watches the show and benefits from it, it could be worth going through the experience.”
Filming was done over a four month period, with camera crews in their house for long shooting days.
Robin, a health and wellness coach, said the experience had made him realise a lot more about where their parenting style comes from.
He said: “An authoritative parenting style is what works.
“I never reealised this at the time until the filming, but retrospectively I could see we align with that style most: with rules, and boundaries, and consequences, but the flexibility to give the kids some independence.”
This was the outcome of the family following Eastern teachings like the ancient Chinese philosophy of Yin and Yang – which promotes balance – and the Middle Way in Zen Buddhism, which espouses moderation and discipline.
One way they applied Yin and Yang, for example, was by encouraging the children to pursue physical pursuits – like martial arts – balanced by more scholarly hobbies like painting to make them well-rounded.
“That is the stuff I’m really interested in – it shows that for 2,500 years, good parenting has been the same,” Robin said.
He said he hoped to write a parenting book that distilled these quite academic ideas into practical and easy to follow tips.
So what is his top piece of advice for parents?
“Daily family mealtimes together, with no distraction, no TV, no screen, and home-cooked food,” he said.
Follow the Gambles on Instagram at @robingambleuk and visit their website, robingamble.co.uk.