Rising Stars, Shining StarLeaf and Angels
Evangelists, Pugilists, Medalists and don’t forget the Man from UNCLE
It has been an interesting month. Astro formed a partnership with a revolutionary cloud videoconferencing manufacturer, we attended our annual boxing event and one of our extended team – Daniel Seabourne – became a National champion.
I occasionally come across a product or technology that really grabs my attention. The type of product that customers evangelise over. In the forty plus years I have been in the industry these products have been few and far between. I have recently been introduced to a cloud video conferencing solution that is an absolute dream to work with and more importantly to use. It is also affordable which obviously helps.
“StarLeaf is a cloud based video conferencing solution that takes away all of the headaches…”
StarLeaf is a cloud based videoconferencing solution that takes away all of the headaches associated with deploying enterprise video conferencing. In particular, StarLeaf is inherently secure, there’s no requirement for investment in on premise infrastructure, it is incredibly easy to install and support so there is no requirement for hiring and training technicians to run the infrastructure. As a result of all of this it is very accessible and affordable for organisations of all sizes. It also has a range of telephony type features. It is just a joy to work with and the customers we’ve presented it to simply love it.
“the highlight is the Sir Henry Cooper Boxing Classic at the Lancaster London Hotel…”
I’ve been involved with the Bud Flanagan Leukaemia Fund for many years and the highlight of each year is their annual Sir Henry Cooper Classic Boxing night held at the Royal Lancaster Hotel. The event is about raising money for the charity and all the funds raised go to good causes as the minimal administration costs are covered by investors. In recent years the BFLF have raised well over £1M with the major benefactor being the Royal Marsden Hospital.
Bud Flanagan OBE was a comedian, entertainer and songwriter. He was also known for singing the theme tune to the popular TV comedy series Dad’s Army – ‘Who Do You Think You Are Kidding Mr Hitler’. Bud had lost a son to leukaemia and it was his wish that part of his estate was used to fund research and treatment as well as bring relief to victims of the disease. The charity was formed in 1969 by his executors soon after he died.
“In recent years the BFLF has raised well over £1M…”
This year was the best year ever with a visiting team from Lagos competing against boxers selected from London boxing clubs. All of the boxers were great ambassadors for their sport and put on a good show. A real highlight for me was a brief talk by BFLF committee member Professor Ray Powles who recently received a Lifetime Achievement Award for a 50 year career fighting cancer. What is remarkable is that his twin brother (twins but born twenty minutes apart either side of midnight) also received a Lifetime Achievement Award for his 50 year career fighting breast cancer. One of my guests referred to Professor Powles and his team as angels, and I can only agree.
“Spike was selected to play lead in the pairs and to take on the much coveted singles role…”
Back in July in my Burgers, Milkshakes, Tennis and Bowls post I introduced Daniel (Spike) Seabourne the winner of our 2013 under 25 bowls tournament. Shortly after I entered into a sponsorship deal with Spike to assist him with his training and tournament costs. I also mentioned in my post that Spike had just been selected to represent England in his International indoor bowls debut in Scotland earlier this month. Well, Spike certainly made the most of his trip to Scotland. The under eighteen competition comprised singles, pairs, triples and fours. Spike was selected to play lead in the pairs and to take on the much-coveted singles role – no pressure!
The pairs competition took place first and Spike and his partner made it to the all England final where they missed out on the gold medal when the final went to a tie break. Silver medal is a fantastic result for a debut, but Spike didn’t have much time to think about it as he had to go straight back on the green for his first game in the singles competition – his fourth game of the day. Spike went on to win this with ease and then won the second single game for a place in the semi-final on Sunday.
“…Spike pulled back to 7 -3 with three ends to go”
Spike was drawn against the last year’s British Isles singles champion in the semi-final but this didn’t phase him and he went on to win the semi-final comfortably for a place in the British Isles Under 18 Final which was also an all England final. Despite his opponent getting in front with a 6 – 0 lead, Spike pulled back to 7 -3 with three ends to go. Spike, didn’t lose focus and went on to win the next three ends to take the title and gold medal for England. A fantastic weekend for Spike taking a gold and silver medal, and for the England Under 18 Team who won the overall team title.
“Having been a big fan in the 60s I never thought I would one day stroll onto the set of The Man From UNCLE”
To round off a very eventful month which also included my daughter’s graduation at the Royal Festival Hall and my grandsons sixth birthday, I went out to Greenwich for a meal on Friday evening. Having been a big fan of Napolean Solo and Illya Kuryakin in the 1960s I never thought I would one day stroll onto the set of The Man From U.N.C.L.E. but that’s exactly what happened as they were filming in the grounds of Greenwich University. The last time I walked onto a film set there was during the filming of Les Mis!
Will November be as eventful I wonder?