Elgin all set for first ever ‘Festival of Conversation’

Cally Russell – heading for Elgin

A Moray venue is gearing up this week for the first ever ‘Festival of Conversation’ aimed at encouraging community empowerment in the region.

Sponsored by Business Gateway, the Festival on Friday and Saturday will feature Cally Russell, the founder of runaway start-up success story ‘Mallzee’, who will deliver a keynote address at the ‘FWD.’ festival of conversation and ideas.

Mr Russell’s innovative shopping app has won widespread acclaim – now the technology industry leader is due to lead a session entitled ‘God Loves a Trier: 5 steps to more entrepreneurial communities’.

Business Gateway will be giving away ten tickets for the Festival, which takes place at The Drouthy Cobbler in Elgin on Friday and Saturday 22 November – these will be allocated on a first-come first-served basis to anyone contacting the Business Gateway office in Elgin.

As well as Cally Russell the event will feature Stewart Murdoch, the director of leisure and communities at Dundee City Council and broadcaster Leslie Riddoch, who will speak on social policy lessons learned from Nordic regions.

Paul Rollo from the Drouthy Cobbler said:  “I’m thrilled to welcome Cally to The Drouthy Cobbler and to invite him to share his perspective on entrepreneurialism in the context of small-town Scotland.

“The next Google could incubate in an Elgin garage and it is critical that the culture which allows small business to thrive is embraced. Cally brings valuable real world experience of the ups and downs which confront ambitious ideas.”

Cally Russell said: “It’s great to come to a place like Elgin and discuss how we’re changing the way the world shops and building a global business from Scotland.

“Since we started the company a little over two years ago I’ve been amazed by the entrepreneurial spirit found throughout Scotland and the steps that people take to nurture it.

“I’m really looking forward to sharing our journey to date, what our future holds and hopefully sparking a debate on how we can create a nation of global entrepreneurs.”

Festival Programme

Friday – 17.30, Stewart Murdoch: What role can the public play in our cultural development?
Friday – 19.30, Lesley Riddoch: Social policy lessons from the Nordic nations
Saturday – 13.30, Tom Lewis: Innovation in Hospitality – are we getting it right?
Saturday – 15.30, Cally Russell: Five steps to more entrepreneurial communities
Saturday – 17.00, Eberhard ‘Paddy’ Bort: Hyper-local government, bringing the public sector closer to the people
Saturday – 19.30, Malcolm Fraser: Placemaking – Communities built to last
Saturday – 22.00, Live music: The Elephant Sessions

Festival and session passes are available from the Drouthy Cobbler.

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