Another successful masterclass!


“And for anyone in the room, whatever age, who has something to offer, it is your responsibility to make that a reality. Find someone to help you shout about it, and scream this from the rooftops whenever you can: ‘I am from Hull and nothing can stop me achieving what I want for myself and for my city’.

“By working together, and not hiding away from each other, we can create a city that people don’t have to visit to understand its quality.

“We are Hull. Thank you.”

This was the poignant message at this week’s James Legal masterclass, from digital entrepreneur Kit Hargreaves, of the Klickntap digital agency.

He was rounding off our series of keynote presentations with a rousing message about what he believes must happen to put Hull where it needs to be, in terms of business success, and as a hotbed of creativity and innovation.

Kit described how, having moved here from Kent to study at the city’s university, he can see a charm that many in the city don’t recognise themselves. As a staunch supporter of youth entrepreneurship in Hull – from the OneSixOne Hull Youth Support Trust centre on High Street, to his role of Vice-Chair for the John Cracknell Youth Enterprise Bank – he also sees the considerable talent coming through, and is keen to do his bit to make it thrive.

Kit was the final of three keynote speakers at our ‘Back to the Future – a celebration of what’s in store for Hull’s future, through a reminder of the city’s past’ masterclass.

Preceding him was teenage racing sensation Katie Milner, who was sharing her ingredients of success as she, quite literally, gears up for a career in professional endurance racing.

Katie made history in 2016, by becoming the first female ever to win the Junior Saloon Car Championship, and she described her ongoing battle to be taken seriously in what remains a male dominated sport.

“I want to be the most successful female racing driver of all time and I will achieve that.

“To get there, I have to be very disciplined and focused,” she said, “including track-based training and gym sessions four times a week to build my fitness and stamina. But no-one said it’s easy – otherwise everyone would do it, and everyone would win.”

And then there was Maureen. A former business advisor to government, OBE and regular invitee to Buckingham Palace garden parties, she described how things have changed – or not – in the 40 years since she became one of the city’s first businesswomen in 1971.

“Back then there weren’t the business clubs and support organisations that exist now, you just had to get on and do it. Being female had its advantages as often male business owners would agree to meet me out of curiosity, but once through the door, nine times out of 10, I would make sure I won their business on merit.

“Although some things have moved on in that time and it is easier, in some ways, to be a woman in business, I think the advancement in technology and the pace and stress with which we have to do things these days – coupled with less of the human touch – could be seen as a less positive by-product of that progress.”

Together, our trio provided some genuine inspiration to the 55-plus business representatives who attended our second masterclass in the series, and there was a palpable buzz about the room before, during and after.

Sharon Stathers, International Trade Advisor for the Department for International Trade, was among the delegates, and was inspired by the morning: “It’s been great to be a part of today. Katie was an absolute inspiration, as were the other speakers. It was very thought provoking to hear their perspectives on how far business has come in the region over recent decades, as well as its potential for the future.”

Nick Miller, MD of James Legal, said: “A huge thanks to everyone who attended, our speakers and all the campaign partners who are helping to make this campaign possible.

“It was amazing to witness the positive atmosphere in the room today, to hear about the potential for entrepreneurship and innovation that exists in Yorkshire & The Humber, and to witness the amount of engaging and productive conversations that were taking place before, during and after our speakers took to the floor.

“This is exactly what we want to achieve through our James Legal – The Business 2017 campaign, we want it to be a catalyst for new connections and business growth, to help ensure that companies in our region seize the one-off opportunity that Hull, UK City of Culture 2017 represents.

“Thanks again to everyone who supported us, in whatever way, to make the masterclass, and our campaign, extra-special.”

Our next masterclass will be taking place at the Hallmark Hotel in North Ferriby again, on Wednesday 27 September, and will feature a keynote presentation from internationally renowned clinical hypnotherapist Sheila Granger, about positive mindset for business. So please save the date and watch this space for further details.

For more details about our Business Booster competition, with its prize of support worth £43,000 to be shared between two stand-out regional businesses, visit The closing date of 31 July is fast approaching, so don’t delay!

For more information about our campaign overall, click here.

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