True stories told by you. Ordinary people tell their extraordinary stories.
They’re poignant, funny, life affirming, cathartic and true. You could be a part of it if you have a story to tell. Join us on the last Thursday of each month for this extraordinary evening with the power of words.
This months storytellers include…
Robert Taylor is a photographer exploring and celebrating people through portraiture and nudes. Born in Birmingham, he came to photography via the British Royal Air Force, qualifying as a barrister, and exciting times in educational publishing in Nigeria. His work is exhibited and collected widely, and is in permanent collections including the National Portrait Gallery, the Victoria & Albert Museum, the Royal Society, and several Oxbridge colleges. For the last 10 years he’s specialised in portraits of mature women of outstanding achievement.
To see more of his work see: www.taylor-photo.co.uk .
Other active interests include rehabilitation through the arts in UK prisons, via the Koestler Trust www.koestlertrust.org.uk positive perspectives on bereavement, and sustainable development in Africa. He is also a member of the Toastmaster club Early Bird Speakers.
Jonathan is a medical student and neuroscientist based at University College London with ties to King’s College. His research focuses predominantly on the use of psychedelic compounds, like LSD and Psilocybin – the active ingredient in magic mushrooms – in the treatment of mental health disorders.
His work outside of the lab and the consulting room is about engaging a new understanding of madness, including both what it is and what it isn’t. He has an enduring passion for the subject and believe that in our modern, comfortable world our greatest pains are inside our minds – what a buddhist might suitably call ‘suffering’. His mission is to stoke conversation about the subject. The aim is to change attitudes that still persist even in the most tolerant parts of our society (and remain entirely unchallenged in most parts of the world), and to encourage innovation to help improve the lives of the billions of people that suffer directly and indirectly from mental health disorders.
Before Fayon was born, her mother desperate to be a mum dreamt she was running after a little girl in a shopping centre, calling Fayon! Fayon! Come back! She woke saying the name. It was not a name she’d ever heard before so wrote it down. Months later she discovered she was pregnant and Bam! A bundle of energy, who’s continuously on the move and is a shopping addict! Created in Coventry, nurtured in Brixton Fayon Cottrell married London’s finest Luither, Laurence Dixon in September 2017. Proud stepmum to 2 giselle-like teenagers, a Yogi, cyclist, Buddhist and general busy body. Second only to her love of shopping is Disco, then talking, so Fayon tends to earn a crust as a presenter in TV, radio, motivational work in schools and creative workshops with stroke survivors.
Ola is an award winning public speaker (Toastmasters International Humorous Speaking District Champion 2011; 2017). He is also a public speaking coach/trainer and professional counsellor working in schools. He is passionate about harnessing the power of humorous storytelling for emotional resilience/wellbeing and describes his work as ‘Stand Up Therapy’.
Lucy Devi Hall
Lucy is a dedicated life coach. She loves to support women to transform and heal their lives through coaching and workshops. With her own inspirational story of transformation, she knows what it is like to feel like change is impossible.
And she is a soon to be author, March 8th. She is one of 30 women who share their touching life stories in the book Simply …….Women! Stories from magnificent women who have risen against the odds! Get ready to be moved.
As a singer/songwriter she has contributed to 3 albums from the Humaniversity Sound, a studio based in Holland. Their music is created to transform people. She is currently working of the 4th album called The Gratitude Meditation.
Her teenage life in ‘trouble torn’ Northern Ireland was rather different from many of her now friends and peers. Violence and segregation became the everyday ‘norm’.Taking the opportunity to escape, she headed to Glasgow to study speech therapy at University. A failed exam 3 years later sent everything into free fall because that envisaged life was not for me.
She started on a road where the opportunities tended to dump her in at the deep end, something she soon realised suited me well. Her working life until 2000 was in the world of ‘not for profit’ where she worked in a mix of small organisations often not knowing where the next batch of funding was coming from to large established charities. She had the opportunity to speak, train, do some TV and radio work and travel. For one of those charities she took part in a sponsored walk along parts of the Great Wall of China. Although walking was one of her loves, this catapulted her into another world, this time of long distance walking. In 2000 she trained as a coach and set up her own business. Through continued growth and evolution, her business now has a different look as she brings together her passion for walking, her love of being able to make a difference to the lives of many women and the lessons from her burnout and adrenal fatigue in 2014/15. Providing space she takes women on transformational walking experiences along ancient paths like the Camino de Santaigo in France and Spain.