‘About Me’s’ are always difficult to write even if you’re seasoned copywriter or like me who works in Public Relations, shouting from the rooftops all things positive about others. So instead of saying that I’m great at things, here’s a bit of background about little old me, what I’ve done and what I do now. For a more formal interpretation, please shimmy over to LinkedIn and have a gander at my profile there.
I was lucky enough to be brought up in a great part of the world, Henley-on-Thames in Oxfordshire and went to the local comprehensive school…don’t knock ‘em! I used to row and cox for Henley Rowing Club, though unfortunately it wasn’t something that I could keep up and I miss that.
When I left school I went onto college to study English Literature, Economics and Statistics. Those that know me will probably be surprised by the subjects listed there. After which, I couldn’t wait to get to work and earning some pennies of my own, so early days jobs included working in a hotel as trainee management, solicitor’s receptionist, receptionist in a Renault garage, admin clerk in a VW/Audi garage and an administrator in a hot stamping foil suppliers, where I learnt that British Airways blue is or was, Pantone 281.
After producing two beautiful children, I eased back into the labour force by working for NatWest. I was working at their first service/call centre in Theale, Reading. Despite having great people to work with, it didn’t inspire or engage me, so I took a sabbatical (from which I was never to return) to assist David Bailey with the first radio RSL (Restricted Service Licence) for Reading 107FM in 1997. After a successful broadcast, I then ran several more RSL’s which were run under the same call sign as well as Kiddz FM, Wax FM and Rock FM. During this period I was also a director of the broadcasting company which oversaw all of these including being the first commercial broadcaster to the British Forces on exercise in Norway…COLD FM. The radio bug had bitten.
Reading 107FM is the ILR commercial radio station for Reading.
During this time along with my partner we were running our other businesses a car parking company and an expanding a property rental portfolio.
It was about this time that I embarked on public relations, after years of building up a network of contacts and media relationships many people started coming to me to ask ‘favours’, could I put them in touch with this person or did I know the right person to speak about that. So that’s how my career in freelance PR started, merging working in the media into Public Relations.
I am an out and out foodie, incredibly passionate about food and always interested to learn more about dishes, products, their provenance and production techniques. We used to travel to Europe extensively and I loved the delis and food shops on the continent. So we opened a deli in the UK. This was my baby and loved every minute.
I regularly wrote food columns for the local newspaper and even have a Diploma in charcuterie and cheese. I know that sounds a bit bonkers.
However, many things in life come to an end, relationships and businesses; at this juncture it wasn’t the latter.
So, what do I do now? I have been freelancing for a number of years, worked with various Military Charities, continue to do so and I am an ardent supporter of the forces and ex-military personnel. Plus, many other projects involving broadcast communications, influence activity, public relations and social media. All these are things that you can check out on my LinkedIn profile.
The radio bug is a bit of a critter in that once it’s bitten it doesn’t let go. Therefore, I occasionally advise radio start-ups and I have managed to combine two loves, radio and food, to produce radio shows.
I have written for food websites, restaurant reviews and been a mystery shopper for restaurants, pubs and hotels.
I set up Root & Prosper Ltd in May 2014 to facilitate running street food events. It is now a fully operational events company organising and running (mainly food related) events in Surrey and beyond. Street Eats street food markets is now a recognisable brand and one I am very proud of.
Here on my blog I will mostly post things foodie related but really anything that catches my eye…or rattles my cage, in the fields I am interested in.
It’s always difficult when people ask, “What do you do?” as what I do is rather varied but I think the words “PR, Broadcaster & Blogger”, pretty well sum me up.
Did I mention I like to travel too, learning about others, finding new interests, talking to people, engaging with them…and…and…and…?
I hope that you enjoy what you read & hear on my blog and I always appreciate comments and feedback, so please do get in touch. You can follow me on twitter if you so wish, on either my personal account @Partroot and if you’re into food @ReigateStEats @CroydonStEats @ReadingStEats and @RootandProsper.
P.S. In reference to my first paragraph. I am great at things…just some things though…not all things…that would be silly!