THE BIG QUESTIONS
WHAT IS YOUR PROFESSIONAL TITLE?
Freelance food writer
WHAT DO YOU DO ON A DAY-TO-DAY BASIS?
Write articles with a focus on all things food, ranging from interviews with food producers to recipe based articles. I’m also a mother to two teenage daughters, run a holiday accommodation business based in west Wales and write for my passion project, Women in Food.
WHAT DID YOU WANT TO DO WHEN YOU WERE A CHILD AND WHAT CHANGED?
I’m blushing at the honesty – I wanted to be a Blue Peter presenter! That and a journalist and always involved in food. In many ways, I lost my focus after I completed university – I simply wanted to travel, which I did, and then I got married and started a family. Cooking and writing have always interwoven their way through my life. As my children are becoming more independent, opportunities are opening up for me which previously felt impossible.
WHAT ACADEMIC QUALIFICATIONS DO YOU HAVE?
History degree and cookery school diploma.
WHAT’S THE BEST CAREER ADVICE YOU’VE EVER BEEN GIVEN?
‘You can have it all, just not necessarily all at the same time.’ These words have sustained me when I’ve felt frustrated by domesticity and now, as my family life changes, are really ringing true.
WHO IS YOUR ROLE MODEL AND WHY?
Elizabeth Luard, because she writes as well as she cooks, has raised a family and had an interesting life.
More recently, I look to Mary Portas #WorkLikeaWoman, as a role model not only for me but for my daughters as well. Of the workplace in which we find ourselves in the 21st century, she says “it’s not about integrating into a not-so-good system, it’s about transforming it,” and I’m all for that.
WHAT IS THE BEST THING ABOUT YOUR CURRENT WORKING ENVIRONMENT?
The tranquility and peace of working from a rural location.
WHAT WOULD YOU CHANGE ABOUT YOUR DAILY WORK ROUTINE IF YOU COULD?
WHERE DO YOU SEE YOURSELF PROFESSIONALLY IN FIVE YEARS’ TIME?
With an established brand and known voice in food.
DO YOU FEEL YOU CAN BE THE SAME PERSON AT WORK AND IN PRIVATE?
WHERE AND IN WHAT ROLES ARE WOMEN IN THE LEADERSHIP STRUCTURE AT YOUR COMPANY?
I'm freelance so this doesn't really apply to me.
DOES DIVERSITY MATTER TO YOU?
Yes – I’m restless for change, particularly in the world of food. For too long, we’ve only see male, white faces leading our kitchens – it’s time for other voices to be heard.
HOW GOOD IS YOUR WORK LIFE BALANCE?
There’s a lot of blurred lines between the two – and in many ways, that’s the joy of it.
WHAT QUALITIES DOES BEING IN YOUR ROLE NECESSITATE?
Powers of observation and an ability to see the story; integrity in order to build trusted relationships; endurance and dedication to the long term vision.
ANY FINAL COMMENTS?
There has never been a better time for women’s voices to be heard – we’re gathering momentum and whichever platform you may choose to take, (in my case, it’s food and the catering industry) now is the time to make yourself heard and celebrate your cause.