September 8, 2020
This week, on NG Meets..., we are talking about The Nottingham Project, a new board made of the great and good of the Nottingham creative and culture scene, with the aim of a once-in-a-lifetime task of rejuvenating Nottingham to make it THE place to be.
We chat to director Lee Walker about how the project got started, the aims and plans behind it and what's happened so far, as well as the impact Covid has had on the project and the city and, of course, we discuss the Broadmarsh and the importance of getting the use of that space right.
Lee tells us why Austin, Texas is such a huge inspiration to him and the team and why Nottingham needs to make this moment count if it is going to be a successful city in the future.
We talk about the huge names that feature on the board of The Nottingham Project which include chair Greg Nugent, who headed up the London 2012 Olympic & Paralympic Organising Committee, vice chair Vicky McClure, best know for her BAFTA award winning role as Lol in This is England, and more recently as a main star in the huge hit show Line of Duty. Also on the board are Shane Meadows, who directed Vicky in This is England, and has also directed hits such as 24/7 and Dead Man's Shoes, Nathanial Wilson, the man behind the hugely successful Nottingham Street Food group, Nottingham UNESCO City of Literature director, and former NG Meets... guest Sandeep Mahal and Nottingham Castle Trust Chief Exec Sara Manning-Blair - plus many, many others.
This is a fascinating dive into a huge and extremely positive thinking project that aims to take Nottingham into the next decade and make it THE place to be, so tune in to hear a lot more about it, as well as how you can let them know what you think Nottingham needs.
You can keep up to date on The Nottingham Project on Facebook, or by visiting their website.
September 1, 2020
In this episode of NG Meets... we meet Debbie Clarke aka Debbiedoodah an award winning business consultant and strategist.
We chat to Debbie about why she started her own business, and why working for others just wasn't for her, and the joy she has in helping businesses and entrepreneurs be successful.
We also chat about social media, it's role in business, the importance of using it correctly and why it's not always the best way to jump in feet first on every new favourite social media fad.
We talk about equality within the business world and Debbie's work with female entrepreneurs as well as her own podcast series Women Who Create.
Plus, we discuss the Coronavirus and the impact that has had on small businesses, including on Debbiedoodah, and what the ramifications might be moving forward in terms of working from home and more telecommuting and conferencing.
So tune in for a fascinating and fun chat - and if you're looking for help with your business be sure to check out what Debbiedoodah can offer you on her official website
You can also follow Debbie on Twitter here
August 18, 2020
5...4...3...2...1....we're blasting off (metaphorically) into space on this weeks episode of NG Meets... as we speak to Michael Merrifield, who is Professor of Astronomy at the University of Nottingham.
We chat to Michael about his career in the field of astronomy and some of the fascinating work he does, including his involvement in the ELT (Extremely Large Telescope) project - and we also address the whole issue of acronyms in science.
Michael tells us about Sixty Symbols, the University's Physic teams Youtube video series that offers up a collection of videos on all things physics, and his first home telescope and #LockdownAstronomy project.
We also chat about social media, the spread of false news and conspiracies and how Michael just cannot help engaging with a climate denying former UKIP MEP.
As a professor at the university Michael has a first hand experience of the impact the coronavirus lockdown has had on further education and he tells us about how the University had to adapt to the new way of teaching, the difficulties around it, the plans for the new school year and what it might mean for further education moving forward.
Finally, Michael tells us the one thing in astronomy that excites him more than anything else.
This is a thrilling episode for lovers of science and astronomy and may well give you a new found appreciation of the night sky and the urge to look up a little more often.
You can follow Mike on Twitter here
Check out the Sixty Symbols Youtube page here
August 11, 2020
In episode of 41 of NG Meets... we chat to Tyla Henriques-White. After arranging the anti-racism protest, that attracted around 5,000 people to Forest Rec earlier this year, Tyla, along with friends Shan Vincent and Janelle Brown, launched the Next Gen Movement, a millennial led project aimed at empowering the local community and tacking racism.
We had a chat with Tyla to find out what the aims of the Next Gen Movement are, and how they have come so far so fast, how racism isn't always about outspoken groups marching down the street but fosters itself in subtle, and often overlooked ways and why the latest protests and outrage - in the light of the George Flloyd murder - feel different to in the past.
Next Gen Movement are working with numerous organisations across the city to get their message out help bring about change, while also working at putting on workshops to help Nottingham youngsters, these workshops need funding and so the team have set up a funding campaign which you can find here.
Check out a fascinating, and hugely important discussion and lend your support to this fantastic organisation, if change is going to happen it needs everybody to get involved.
You can find out more about Next Gen Movement by checking them out on Facebook.
NB: There is a Black Lives Matter protest taking place this Saturday, 15 August, in Nottingham Market Square from 12pm - this event is being supported by numerous groups, including Next Gen Movement - for more information click here.
July 28, 2020
It's episode 40 and we're extremely proud to welcome this weeks guest, the award winning author Jasbinder Bilan. We chat to Jasbinder about her debut novel Asha and the Spirit Bird which was a huge success, landing her the 2019 Costa Children's Book Award, and also her upcoming novel Tamarind and the Star of Ishta which is available from September.
We also chat about her love of writing growing up and the impact lockdown has had on her work and her experiences of virtual events and festivals, plus she tells us some of the places she misses most about Nottingham - Jasbinder now lives in Bath.
We also have an EXCLUSIVE reading from the new novel at the end of the episode so be sure to stick around until the end.
Be sure to check out this episode and the head over to Jasbinder's official website for all the latest information, including how you'll be able to get hold of Tamarind and the Star of Ishta when it hits shelves in September.
July 21, 2020
This week, on NG Meets... we are chatting to Leigh Ellis of Notts Pride about how the event has, like pretty much every other major event worldwide, fallen to the coronavirus pandemic lockdown and the alternative plans they have put in place.
While there may be no Pride march and city centre event this year the Pride team have put together a two hour special show, recorded in the Ballroom at the Council House, featuring performances from the likes of Maryam Din, Rob Green, Kitty Tray and Ravelle Sade, along with videos and more.
We also chat about the importance of acknowledging the diversity of the LGBTQ+ community and the different experiences faced by different people, the impact the lockdown has had on the community and the importance of looking at mental health and support at a time when so much focus is on the physical health issues.
We also talk about how Leigh got involved in Notts Pride, the difficult balancing games that go into companies supporting and being involved in Pride and plans for 2021.
Notts Pride 2020 takes place on Saturday 25 July, 7-9pm and can be watched on the Notts Pride Facebook page.
July 14, 2020
In the latest episode of NG Meets... we speak to Josh Osoro Pickering, Community Engagement and Participation Officer at the Nottingham Castles Trust.
Having only started the role in January this year Josh has had something of a baptism of fire when it comes to the new role with the Coronavirus pandemic throwing up unprecedented and unexpected challenges, and he tells us about what he and the team have been doing to engage people during this time, such as online activities, physical activity packs and even a gardening project.
The castle itself, of course, was already shut before the pandemic hit as it goes through a huge restoration and renovation project, somewhat sheltering from the worst impacts of the shutdown, but the effects will still be felt. Josh tells us a bit about the plans for the reopening of the castle, what considerations may have to be given to potential guidelines at that time and some of the exciting things that will be happening following the work.
We also chat about the importance of engaging all communities within Nottingham in the story of the castle and making it's story as much about the Nottingham of today as it is about the city's past.
There's also a little bit of football chat in there as well.
For more on what is happening with the Nottingham Castle project and the activities available to enjoy check out the blog over at the Nottingham Castle Trust website
June 30, 2020
As Pride month comes to a close you can check out the latest episode of NG Meets... in which we speak to Nat Thorne from the Nottingham Trans Hub.
We discuss the foundation of the Hub and the support and events it offers, and how they have adapted their services during the coronavirus pandemic, including virtual socials - and the benefits these kind of gatherings could bring the hub moving forward.
We also chat about the ongoing fight for trans rights and the vitriolic push back that has been seen on social media, and the government decision to ignore the results of the survey on trans rights in relation to the Gender Equality Act - and we dive into the role that social media, education and science can, and will play, in improving understanding and support for trans rights.
This is a fascinating chat and, hopefully, paints a more positive hope for the future of trans rights - and indeed all rights - amidst what feels like a hugely hostile period of time.
For more on the Nottingham Trans Hub and the services it offers be sure to check out their official website, and you can also find them on Facebook
June 16, 2020
This week is Refugee Week and as part of it we had a chat with two of the members of the Nottingham Refugee Week team - Allan Njanji and Dr Anna Ball.
Allan and Anna joined us to talk about what Nottingham Refugee Week is all about and how they both came to be involved in the event, they also tell us about how they have had to change the event in the face of the Coronavirus pandemic and the big plans they have had to push back to 2021.
We also chat about the importance of challenge the narrative put out by much of the media when it comes to refugees and how events like Refugee week do this - and the importance of not forgetting about refugees especially at a time like this when many minds are elsewhere, and we talk about how the refugee community has been impacted by the virus pandemic and the extra issues facing these communities such as language barriers, issues around accessing healthcare and support services being effected.
This is a really fascinating chat that reminds us of the importance of fighting to make sure the positive stories of what refugees bring to the country is shared and about the potential battles ahead as a turbulent economic period will almost certainly turn a spotlight on refugees and the organisations that support them.
Nottingham Refugee Week runs from 15-21 June 2020, for more details on the virtual events taking place check out the official website or head over to the Facebook page.
June 10, 2020
In this weeks episode we are chatting to actor Cassie Bradley, who is, probably, best known for her roles in Coronation Street and Casualty. We chat to Cassie about how a trip to the Nottingham Playhouse panto was the catalyst to following the acting dream and working on stage and screen, we also talk about the impact the coronavirus lockdown has had on her and the acting world and what the possible steps might be for the return of filming.
Cassie talks about her involvement with the excellent Nottingham Young Creative Awards and the online monologue webinars she is doing for them - which you can find out more about here.
This is a great chat with a dive behind the scenes into some of the different aspects of the acting world and adapting to new situations.
Follow Cassie on Twitter to keep up to date on what she is working on, and check out the excellent monologue she recorded for the recent Nottstopping Festival.