loader from loading.io

S2 Ep3 Wivenhoe House Hotel - Oliver Brown, General Manager

Tourism Business Chat

Release Date: 04/28/2021

S3 Ep3 Wiveton Hall Farm - Desmond MacCarthy, Owner show art S3 Ep3 Wiveton Hall Farm - Desmond MacCarthy, Owner

Tourism Business Chat

Norfolk is famous for a lot of things, and back in 2015 when the BBC commissioned a behind the scenes reality TV series about life on Wiveton Hall Farm; Normal for Norfolk, Desmond MacCarthy and his infamous eyebrows were added to the list! Chris chats to Desmond about life on and off camera; Desmond’s passion for the environment; and how you pivot a business model from fruit picking and farming, into a successful tourist destination. Desmond highlights the importance of sustainability within the tourism sector, how agricultural firms need to embrace this, and how all those in the sector...

info_outline
S3 Ep2 Imperial Hotel, Great Yarmouth - Managing Director Nick Mobbs show art S3 Ep2 Imperial Hotel, Great Yarmouth - Managing Director Nick Mobbs

Tourism Business Chat

Nick oversees the well-known, and well-respected, Imperial Hotel, in Great Yarmouth. In February 2020, the business won the title of ‘Customer at the heart of everything’ at the Norfolk & Suffolk Tourist Attractions awards. No sooner had they got the award on the mantle-piece, COVID-19 hit and Nick reflects on the headless chicken feeling they experienced. As a hotel that could remain open, they found themselves constantly moving goalposts and pivoting at every turn. They were offering rooms to the East Anglia 1 wind farm offshore teams but, whilst servicing key workers, they still...

info_outline
S3 Ep1Norfolk & Suffolk Tourist Attractions - Peter Williamson, DMO Vice Chair show art S3 Ep1Norfolk & Suffolk Tourist Attractions - Peter Williamson, DMO Vice Chair

Tourism Business Chat

We are back for series three with a bang! There are not many with more experience or passion for the tourism sector than Peter Williamson, former Chair, now Vice Chair of the Destination Marketing Organisation (DMO), Norfolk & Suffolk Tourist Attractions. Peter is the former owner of the hugely popular Merrivale Model Village, but when he sold the village in 2017 retirement didn’t suit him, so he returned to work by launching The Old Penny Arcade. This attraction allowed him to pursue his passion of refurbishing vintage fairground and amusement arcade machines, where families can revel...

info_outline
S2 Ep5 Adnams - Karen Hester, Chief Operating Officer show art S2 Ep5 Adnams - Karen Hester, Chief Operating Officer

Tourism Business Chat

The series finale is a chat with Karen Hester, Chief Operating Officer of Adnams brewery in Southwold. Karen describes her story as ‘from mop to top’ – starting her career at Adnams as a cleaner, she’s now an award winning, glass ceiling breaking COO. She chats to Chris about all things lockdown, pivoting, the digital revolution, stay-cations, the importance of wellbeing coming out of the pandemic, and much more, but this episode is really about the story of Karen’s personal journey into the world of business, and of her successes along the way. Karen started her career, as a young...

info_outline
S2 Ep4: insight6 -  Judy Randon, Customer Experience Director show art S2 Ep4: insight6 - Judy Randon, Customer Experience Director

Tourism Business Chat

What is customer experience? It’s the emotional connection that the customer has with a business. Better known as customer service, it’s more than just functionality – experience is about how people are made to feel. Judy is here to explain why this is incredibly important for tourism, leisure and hospitality businesses to focus on, moving out of the pandemic, and to secure their future past the initial frenzy of ‘being let out again.’ Judy has worked with food and beverage-based businesses for decades, from accountancy to marketing, from secret shopping to research & development...

info_outline
S2 Ep3 Wivenhoe House Hotel - Oliver Brown, General Manager show art S2 Ep3 Wivenhoe House Hotel - Oliver Brown, General Manager

Tourism Business Chat

Chris chats to Oliver Brown, General Manager at Wivenhoe House Hotel, about all things hospitality and lockdown; his experience on the board of Visit Essex; and his work with the University of Essex’s Edge Hotel School and Hospitality Action. Oliver has worked his way up through the sector, including spells working in America, at The Ritz, and The Dorchester, where he serviced the likes of Sylvester Stallone, the cast of F.R.I.E.N.D.S and Goldie Hawn, amongst others. His wealth of experience perfectly positions him to comment on the last year, and what the sector needs to do to recover,...

info_outline
S2 Ep2 Hanks Deli - Geoff Bligh, Co-owner show art S2 Ep2 Hanks Deli - Geoff Bligh, Co-owner

Tourism Business Chat

In this latest conversation, Chris chats to Geoff Bligh, a co-owner of Hanks Deli, Suffolk’s popular vegan supermarket. Where many hospitality businesses faced struggles and closures during lockdown, Hanks Deli pivoted and expanded, meeting a demand that shocked even them! The success of Hanks, and their expansion into a supermarket, take-away and pub means, for them, veganism is good for business! It’s a new reality for how we produce and consume food, and could be the key to the future of hospitality. Geoff worked in the City for many years, before following his passion. His frustration...

info_outline
S2 Ep1; Thursford -  Interview with Charlie & George Cushing show art S2 Ep1; Thursford - Interview with Charlie & George Cushing

Tourism Business Chat

Series 2 launches with a real treat – a behind the curtains look at Thursford, famous for its Christmas Spectacular show, weddings and more. A favourite of locals, tourists, and celebrities alike!  Looking back on March 2020, brothers Charlie (General Manager) and George (Project and Marketing Manager) Cushing were positive and thinking, “Thank goodness the pandemic isn’t happening at Christmas!” Cut to December 2020, and they’ve had to plan and orchestrate a completely new, and equally thrilling, theatre-esque experience for their loyal fan-base.  They have a fascinating...

info_outline
S1 Ep5: Camplings Linen - Richard Turvill, MD show art S1 Ep5: Camplings Linen - Richard Turvill, MD

Tourism Business Chat

In the final episode of series 1, Chris chats to Richard Turvill, the managing director of Camplings. Operating out of Great Yarmouth and Cambridge, they are the region’s leading laundry and linen supplier to the hospitality, food production and leisure sector. With many of their customers closed due to lockdown, Richard and his team had to find ways to pivot and adapt during the last 12 months, and his insights into lockdown, investment in technology, Brexit and business in general are invaluable. Richard offers a fascinating look behind the scenes at how this family business was started,...

info_outline
S1 Ep4; Norfolk Broads Direct -  Ruth Knight, Director show art S1 Ep4; Norfolk Broads Direct - Ruth Knight, Director

Tourism Business Chat

In this week’s episode, Chris chats to Ruth Knight, Director of Norfolk Broads Direct, Broads Tours and Waveney River Centre, and recently retired chair of Visit the Broads. Ruth lives and breathes the Broads, and the tourism sector, but both Ruth and her businesses faced huge challenges with lockdown restrictions and closures. This valuable conversation can be summed up into: innovation; implementation; change; and passion for the sector. Ruth speaks honestly about the effect that the closures had on both her and her team members, and the subsequent reactions to the changes that needed to...

info_outline
 
More Episodes

Chris chats to Oliver Brown, General Manager at Wivenhoe House Hotel, about all things hospitality and lockdown; his experience on the board of Visit Essex; and his work with the University of Essex’s Edge Hotel School and Hospitality Action.

Oliver has worked his way up through the sector, including spells working in America, at The Ritz, and The Dorchester, where he serviced the likes of Sylvester Stallone, the cast of F.R.I.E.N.D.S and Goldie Hawn, amongst others. His wealth of experience perfectly positions him to comment on the last year, and what the sector needs to do to recover, including the continuing training of the future workforce through The Edge School, who offer hands-on training and education through Wivenhoe House.

Oliver chats openly and honestly about the practical impact that lockdown has had on the hotel, its team, and the hospitality sector in general; a sector he believes was previously ignored by the Government in its contribution to the economy. He is confident this will now change, moving forwards, and that the ‘middle child syndrome’ of the sector will be a thing of the past.

Oliver is passionate about the work the hotel does for Hospitality Action, a charity for those who work in the industry and fall into hard times through alcoholism, other addictions and mental health issues, still an ongoing battle for many workers in the sector. He and Chris chat about the importance of the fund now, in a time where many staff will have lost their jobs, are working on reduced salaries, or are struggling to return to work after nearly a year on furlough.

Oliver also discusses the legacy of UK based holidays after the surge in popularity, with travel abroad still restricted, and a predicted hesitance in travellers, moving forwards, and in particular, the impact this has had on Essex, now a favourite of Londoners discovering it for the first time, unable to visit their usual holiday destinations.

They also discuss the change in expected customer budgets, business spend and customer behaviour, and how Oliver predicts a massive BOOM in Christmas 2021 parties, vaccine permitting!

You can find out more about The Edge Hotel School and its training here.                                                   

You can learn about the work of Hospitality Action here.
Visit Wivenhoe House here.

We would love to hear from you, get in touch with us on [email protected] or [email protected]

If you enjoy this episode, please subscribe and whilst you are there, we would really appreciate a 5* review, as this helps other people find our podcast!

www.larking-gowen.co.uk/tourism-insights 

(c) Larking Gowen LLP