The Riverscape Power Talks series is an exciting programme of Guest Speaker events, inviting business-owners, creatives and entrepreneurs to share their story of working and living in the local area.
Held in the Riverscape Sales Gallery, with talks running quarterly throughout the year, each talk will welcome a new speaker to share their career journey, provide advice for budding founders, and discuss why the Royal Docks is the perfect place to set up a business and live. Hosted by Joe Mackertich, Editor of Time Out Magazine, the Power Talks are free to attend and open to everyone.
So far in the series, we have hosted several local entrepreneurs who are proud to share their stories with the Riverscape community.
We took our second Riverscape Power Talk of 2023 on the road to nearby Thames Barrier Park (south), where zero-waste pop up theatre company The Greenhouse is based – featuring Oli Savage, Founder and Artistic Director of The Greenhouse, who will be interviewed by Joe Mackertich, Editor of Time Out Magazine.
Taking place in their 55-seat touring theatre built entirely from waste materials, making theatre more social in communities and inspire more sustainable lifestyles through creativity. Oli discussed various topics around sustainability, including storytelling as a route to environmental action, and how we can inspire and motivate, instead of intimidate and force. He will also talk about environmental theme vs practice, how we can find the right balance between entertainment and messaging, and our responsibility to seek sustainable options.
On first Power Talk of 2023, featured Guest Speaker Cimeon Ellerton-Kay (founder of creative community venue Social Convention).
Cimeon is co-founder of local arts club and venue Social Convention. Social Convention is ‘a club for the creative and curious’ – a local hub where people can discover new performances and exhibitions. Home to a network of artists and producers, Social Convention is also a studio for creatives to work on new projects and collaborate.
Running an arts venue was a lifelong dream for Cimeon, he discussed his background in the arts, taking the leap to launch his own venue, how Social Convention supports local artists, and why the Royal Docks was the perfect place to set up this venture.
Our third Power Talk event of 2022 featured Natalie Robinson, (AKA Style Icon Nat) has worked in the fashion industry for over 15 years. She launched a fashion, beauty and lifestyle blog in 2017 – Style Icon Collective – after years of personal shopping and red-carpet styling for celebrities including Alexandra Burke, Shingai, and Amy Willerton to name a few.
The Style Icon Collective blog has risen to fame in London, Italy and the United States with over 50K followers, covering Oscars red-carpet fashion, product launches, lifestyle experiences and gift guides. Natalie is an expert voice whose styling tips are regularly featured in Woman & Home. In January, Natalie was appointed freelance broadcast fashion stylist at QVC.
Natalie and Bridget hosted an inspiring discussion, covering Natalie’s career path and life in the fashion industry, followed by an interactive session on 2022’s hottest Autumn/Winter fashion trends and 1:1 styling tips. Natalie also discussed the local community and why the Royal Docks is a fantastic place to live.
Our second Power Talk event of 2022 featured Ben Breen, Chiropractor and Fitness Coach. After a 7 year career in the RAF, Ben chose to follow his passion for sport and fitness, and decided to train to become a chiropractor, setting up his own clinic in the Royal Docks.
Ben gave an inspiring talk where he discussed the extensive training process to become a chiropractor, the challenges of setting up his own clinic during the pandemic, the benefits of chiropractic care and fitness training, and how the Royal Docks community supported his new venture.
Our first Power Talk event of 2022 featured Victoria Cozens, founder of Perky Blenders coffee roastery. Perky Blenders is a family-formed East London-based coffee business – once a humble coffee cart trading outside St James’ station, Perky Blenders has grown into a household name, now with three shops, three partnership stores including one in Royal Docks, and a thriving online coffee subscription offering.
Victoria discussed topics such as Perky Blenders’ entrepreneurial journey from a kitchen table idea to an award-winning coffee destination, the inspiration and ethos behind the brand, key learnings from launching a business in the midst of a pandemic, and developing a business with a young family.
Our third entrepreneur and guest speaker in the 2021 Power Talk Series was Roxanna Lyssa Allardyce, Founder and Director of Good Vibes Café. Good Vibes café launched during lockdown in 2020, with a strong philosophy based on authenticity, passion and excellence, serving mind-blowing coffee from local roasters Perky Blenders, homemade and locally sourced food, and above all, good vibes!
Roxanna discussed her journey from barista to café owner, the inspiration behind the Good Vibes brand, and overcoming challenges caused by the pandemic and global supply chain problems.
Our second entrepreneur and guest speaker in the series was Rhea Patel, Owner of One Element Docklands. One Element is the outdoor (and now also live online) fitness club for all abilities with a mission to build fitness and social hubs in local communities, starting with Thames Barrier Park in London Docklands.
After qualifying as a Chartered Accountant, Rhea was looking to channel her energy into something she was passionate about, and decided to start One Element in the local area alongside her day job; in just over two years, they are now 100+ members strong and have built a thriving, friendly group within the wider Royal Docks community.
Our first Power Talk speaker was Ben Hession, founder of zero-waste online produce delivery service Loaf.ly.
Ben spoke about launching his business during the Covid-19 pandemic and following his dream of supporting not only the planet, but his local community, by selling fresh British bread, eggs, milk and produce locally.