Travel report Roadshow Mobile Unit, Merthyr Tydfil / Brecon Wales
After the Roadshow to Eeklo Belgium, on the 29th of october until the 7th of november I went to Wales with The Mobile Unit from StudioVMK as a part of the tourcrew, together with Mark van Veen | KOW art productions and Vincent Vriens | Victor-Zorro. With the jeep, trailer and ‘the silver danty van’ we took the ferry from Dunkerque to Dover. In Camberley we stayed over in a nice youth hostel, called RSVP.
On sunday afternoon we arrived at the Winchfawr Lodge in Merthyr Tydfil, where Nigel, Gaynar and son Leon warmly welcomed us. What a beautiful place to stay and superb hospitality! The fridges of the ‘self service’ lodges contained fresh breakfast every morning and drinks at night; flat tires were taken care of; and above all Mark and I enjoyed a real English breakfast on the day of our departure. Thank you very much!
On monday morning our Collabor8 partners Carol Williams from Brecon Beacons National Park Authority (BBNPA) and Ryan Barry from Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council (MTCBC) warmly welcomed us, at the Garwnant Visitor Centre where the Roadshow was located. Ready to erect the Mobile Unit together with Ian and Ashley, inspite of Welsh weather. But then… powersupply problems. Fortunately tuesday everything goes well.
Monday evening we welcome our colleague entrepreneurs from The Netherlands Lois de Jong | Magma Media, Gijs van Zon | Freshheads and Dennis Buster | Fiss-wise. And in the morning they kick off the program with presentations and consults in the afternoon for local entrepreneurs in Tourism from Merthyr Tydfil, while outside Vincent and Mark, with the help of Andrew, Claire and Harold, erect the Mobile Unit. Where am I in this? Somewhere in between… making pictures 🙂
That evening Carol and Richard Tyler, Sustainable Tourism Manager for the Brecon Beacons National Park Authority, take us to The Star Inn in Talybont-on-Usk. A great pub, where we taste local beers, have a great diner and where Lois and Gijs spontaneously give a free consult. Thank you Richard. See the boys below being very much focused on their plates.
Wednesday morning and afternoon my collegues and I give consults to local entrepreneurs in tourism from Brecon, and Andrew Gray & Peter Ros give a workshop in ‘Community Building’. In the evening Lois, Dennis, Vincent and Gijs present their projects on ‘Future gazing’ for quite a crowd. Nice to see how they interact, not being afraid to feedback and complement each other in a transparant way. Due to this the presentation is very interactive and accessible to everyone.
On thursday we all look forward to our climb upon the Black Mountains; the Pen Y Fan (highest peak of South Wales and southern Britain) in the afternoon with a former S.A.S. Ranger. But not before Yolanda Mout (director StudioVMK) gives a presentation ‘Creative industry in Tilburg – a way of living’ and my collegue’s give a workshop to local entrepreneurs from creative industries. The workshop ‘This is how we do it’ is about ‘practise what you preach’; how we work together, what it has to offer each of us and what we together offer ‘the world’, what scepticism to throw overboard and the learning opportunities.
*Geared up group picture* (my camera fails on me, who has a nice one?)
And than ‘mother goose’, that’ll be me, is so enthousiastic (almost) on top of that mountain that she loses track of time. At the visitor centre Yolanda and Carol are very worried, for us being late or rather, what if something has happened? Than, just in time we arrive at the visitor centre and Councilor Howard Barret kick’s off with the opening speech. After that, we summarize our stay, in a dynamic presentation in which each has his role and saying. That’s when I come to find that the role of moderator also quite suites me, a new experience. Friday morning Mark, Vincent and I wave our collegue’s goodbye and break down the Mobile Unit.
Everything goes well. Though that weekend a new adventure will present itself to Mark and me. Swindon, an inspiring place to visit: the garage…
On mondaynight we arrive home safely (without Mr. trailer). The Roadshow to Wales was an adventure on multilevel! I thank StudioVMK for this opportunity, my collegue entrepreneurs for a great time and learning experience, and last but not least our partners from Wales who made our stay warm, welcome and very worthwhile!
For more info, pictures and upcoming Roadshows to Killorglin, Ireland and Arundel, South-England in 2012, see the Mobile Unit website.