Lisa's 'austerity' blog a bit of fun

THE father of a satirical blogger unmasked as a mum-of-two from South Yorkshire says he found his daughter's online musings "hilarious" and that her work was "all tongue in cheek".

Lisa Unwin, aged 44, was brought up in Swinton, near Rotherham, and caused a media controversy with her blog 'Austerity Mum', chronicling a City of London couple's idea of saving money during the recession.

Her suggestions included sacrificing private helicopter flights and foregoing a family holiday in the Maldives in favour of their weekend home in the French Alps.

She also claimed her husband Ashley, Sheffield-raised head of PriceWaterhouseCoopers' consulting arm, is having to have his designer shoes resoled at a specialist cobblers on Bond Street.

He was said to wear an 80-a-bottle aftershave while she was considering shopping at Asda instead of Waitrose.

Of her own cost-cutting, Lisa said: "It means no new clothes for me and him, no new handbags, no new make-up, jewellery, shoes, facials – waxing is of course ring-fenced."

A former communications director at Deloitte accountants, Lisa started her blog six months ago after realising cutbacks were needed when the family bought a large Georgian house in Hackney, London.

Ashley is believed to earn 500,000 a year, and Lisa took the blog down due to his embarrassment over its contents.

Lisa's father, Geoffrey Scherdel, 71, a retired building surveyor, said his daughter first showed him the blog before Christmas.

Geoffrey, who lives in Swinton and is married to former teacher Patricia, also 71, said: "It's hilarious, especially if you know her husband. He is a stylish man and does like to spend his money, but he doesn't spend that much on aftershave and they haven't got that luxurious a lifestyle.

"The helicopter ride was a one-off. They own one Range Rover between them which is at least five years old. Having said that, they are probably more comfortable than most."

Ashley had a traditional working-class background, grew up in a semi-detached house in Sheffield and went to Sheffield University.

Mr Scherdel said of his daughter: "She certainly wasn't brought up on a sink estate and I like to think she was brought up in a nice area. She went to the local comprehensive and got a first-class honours degree in accountancy at Loughborough University."

Lisa worked for accounting company Arthur Andersen, where she met her husband, before moving to Deloitte.

Mr Scherdel added his daughter does not have much time on her hands.

He said: "She goes to a gym, runs and is a member of a book club."

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