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My visit to the Big Smoke

Love a 360 moment…

As I write, I’m sat in Pret* (Marble Arch). This was the first place I used to come to almost 30 years ago as a teenager, after I’d just got off of the Oxford Tube bus, which used to take me from Oxford city centre, to London.

Every single school holiday, I would get that bus to London to do work experience at various London TV stations/ news rooms. Even as a student, if I wasn’t in lectures, I was running for whatever production companies that would take me.

Before I left for uni, I saved so hard to buy myself tons of stamps, so I could send out CVs and covering letters. I very proudly still have my filling cabinet of rejection letters in the loft. I never saw them as a rejection, more of a map pointing me in the right direction to where I was heading. In fact, I relished in getting a rejection letter for my generic “to whom it may concern”, because they’d be on headed note paper, with the fax and phone number of the person in charge- WIN! I was so determined to carve out a career in TV and film, I had complete tunnel vision.

The hard work paid off… Although I left my career in TV and film, the relentless drive I had back then has helped carry me through some seriously challenging times since starting a business just before the pandemic**.


The Rose Review

Right now I’m about to have breakfast with Alison Rose, the incredibly inspiring CEO of NatWest. Alison has invited me and other female entrepreneurs to hear a progress report on the Rose Review. She’s conducting this report on behalf of the government highlighting the challenges that female entrepreneurs face.

I always try to keep our conversations light and positive when writing business blogs, but the truth is, discrimination and unconscious bias exist and it’s important that we talk about it. Knowing that the government is taking this seriously and being part of the conversation gives me hope for change. It’s incredible to be invited to participate and share our story. I look forward to seeing future updates from the team behind the Rose Review.

* For the record: I still order the exact same thing in Pret that I did when I was 13
** Getting a bit emosh right now, but it’s the rain, I’m not crying ☺️

Charlotte from Brownie and the Bean smiling and holding a reusable cup. She was waiting in London to enter the Rose Review progress report event.