May 03

Elevenses is back with big names from politics, culture and sport

Key figures from politics, culture and sport will deliver a different perspective on the corporate world when they line up for the Elevenses sessions at Humber Business Week 2022.

For the first interview on Tuesday 7 June Paul Sewell will welcome Alastair Campbell, writer, communicator and strategist best known as former Prime Minister Tony Blair’s spokesman, press secretary and director of communications and strategy.

He is also a campaigner on mental health issues and the author of a wide range of books including diaries, novels and memoirs. For his Elevenses slot the spotlight will fall on Winners and How They Succeed, his 2015 volume which explores the achievements of an array of global household names and analyses what it takes to win in politics, business and sport.

The second event on Wednesday 8 June will feature John Godber and his daughter Martha for a discussion about the business of culture and the transformation of Hull Truck Theatre. John served as Artistic Director of Hull Truck for 26 years and in 2011 set up The John Godber Company. Martha is an award-winning actor who also works as Social Media Manager and Graphic Designer for the family firm.

On Thursday 9 June Paul will interview retired boxer Tommy Coyle, who won the Commonwealth lightweight title in 2018 and retired the following year to launch his Boxclever community project and focus on the transition from boxing to business.

Tommy has achieved early success in his business career by securing and then renewing a deal to deliver a programme of wellbeing and support services to more than 700 workers at the Siemens Gamesa wind turbine assembly factory in Hull. The partnership of Siemens Gamesa and Coyle Health and Wellbeing this year won the Best Physical Initiative category in The Great British Workplace Wellbeing Awards.

All the interviews will start at 11am and will take place at the University of Hull’s Aura Innovation Centre. They are free to attend but advance booking is essential.

Paul said: “We’ve invited people who aren’t though of first and foremost as being from the world of business yet who succeeded in their ensuing careers because they developed and demonstrated business know-how – and showed they are very good at it.”

“Alastair Campbell’s intriguing book looks at some of the parallels between politics, business and sport and we’ll be asking about the lessons learned from researching such a detailed project with some of the most famous people in the world.

“Culture is of huge importance to Hull and we want to explore how that connects with business, from John Godber’s role in leading Hull Truck from bankruptcy in 1984 to a £15m new home in 2010, and the desire for independence which led to the formation of the family business.

“Tommy is a good example of somebody who has followed a successful career in sport by making an impact in business. He fought at the iconic Madison Square Garden and also won a Commonwealth title. Now his bouncing, entrepreneurial enthusiasm has enabled him to secure award-winning, repeat business with Siemens Gamesa. We want to know what’s next.”

All three Elevenses interviews are free to attend but advance booking is essential, using the links below:

7 June – Alistair Campbell:

8 June – John and Martha Godber:

9 June – Tommy Coyle:

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