Bitterne Parker

Bitterne Parker: Priya Tew

Priya Tew
This Bitterne Parker column was written in early May 2016.

Priya Tew runs Pilates with Priya, a hidden Pilates studio in Bitterne Park. She is also a dietitian and mum to two small people with another baby about to pop out. Often seen in the press, sometimes on the TV, Priya has her own Pilates DVD range, and more often than not is in her Lycra leggings whipping abdominals into shape.

The Qs & the As

What's your link with Bitterne Park

I moved here in 2007 after owning a house on the Flowers Estate. Now we have two children, with one more on the way and feel quite a part of the community.

What’s your earliest memory of the area?

Driving over the river and having a cuppa at Il Picchio. Oh and our friends got married at Church of the Ascension but I had no idea that was in Bitterne Park at the time!

How could the area be better?

More great local businesses in the Triangle so we don’t have to go further afield and can support the smaller shops. Oh and less takeaways: how many do we really need in one small precinct?! I’m a dietitian, can you tell?

Tell us something we probably didn’t know already about Bitterne Park

We run a hidden home-based Pilates studio on Cobbett Road. It’s a secret “core” community of strong abdominals and good posture. Our speciality includes our pregnancy classes (where you will see women with bump carrying large birthing balls from their cars to the house) and our postnatal classes for mums and babies, but we run normal Pilates and children’s ballet classes too. Coming soon will be sports massage.

What’s good – or not so good – about the wider city?

I love that we are in a city so have access to shops, great education, transport all over the country, eateries and the nightlife. Yet it still feels open and full of green spaces. Being so close to the forest and countryside and sea makes it a great place to live.

What’s your passion in life?

I’m passionate about nutrition, helping make bodies more functional and my faith in God. I’m a specialist dietitian in the eating disorder field, so I work with people all over the country, providing education, nutrition advice for meals, breaking down negative mindsets and coming up with creative ways to help people see how to eat well. Our Pilates business happened accidentally but my passion for that is just as strong: I love seeing how it changes people’s bodies and the way they feel about themselves.

How do you put bread on your table?

I bake it. In fact you can see me in action on YouTube cooking with my kids. Wheat-free bread for myself (I’m wheat intolerant rather than just preferring to not eat wheat) and normal bread for the rest of the troops.

What has your career taught you?

To celebrate the small successes in life, take risks and look after your body - you only get one. You never know as a freelancer what is around the corner. Dream big and give it a go: what’s the worst that can happen?

What really gets your goat?

Fad diets - all of them. There is no quick fix, it’s all about eating properly, actually cooking and being active

How do you relax?

Pilates and a glass of wine. Well the wine is for when I’m not pregnant that is.

Which is your favourite pub?

Hmmmm now that’s hard. Small children and two businesses mean I work a lot of evenings so the pub is a distant memory. Cafés are more of my thing. Anywhere that sells wheat-free cake and makes a decent hot chocolate.

What are you drinking?

Tea. Loose leaf Assam.

What do you listen to?

Silence. It’s a rarity in life!

Can you recommend a really good read?

Go check out Stephanie Chapman’s book ‘Getting over Jessie Franklin’ because she is a local Bitterne Parker!

I tend to read a mixture of fantasy books and textbooks plus the Bible. My Kindle is an interesting place.

What’s a great day out?

The beach, the forest or a picnic in one of the country parks. Or a day without children in a spa with champagne and friends. That’s more of a dream!

What scares you?

Spiders, they shouldn’t be allowed.

What would you most like to change - in the world and in yourself?

I’d love to change people’s negative self-image and see mental health conditions conquered. In myself, more tolerance of people who annoy me!

What’s on your ‘bucket list’?

  • Skydiving
  • Travelling and possibly living in Asia
  • Having a horse
  • Owning a baby grand piano
  • Eating in as many amazing places as possible
  • Having a full night’s sleep
  • A night in a four-poster bed in a castle

Tell us a joke

My daughter's best one at present:

Why did the chicken cross the road?

To buy butter.

Nope I don’t get it either.

Finally, what would be another great question for other Bitterne Parkers?

Who inspires you?

Thanks so much for taking part!

Priya’s ‘Pilates with Priya’ website is at

Tune in next time when another Bitterne Parker answers our searching questions.

Read about other Bitterne Parkers

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