Inspiration Station

Darren Campbell MBE – Former Olympic Sprinter

Darren Campbell MBE is a British Olympic athlete, sprinter and sports coach and renowned Olympic speaker and plays an integral part of the coaching team for Cardiff City F.C.

His participation in the British Olympic relay team has helped to make them one of the most successful teams in British history and, with Campbell as part of the team, they won a gold medal at the 2004 Olympics in Athens. His role as an Olympic speaker provides him with ample opportunities to discuss the dynamics of working with such a successful team and how they dealt with the pressure of fame and the hopes of the British public.

As his career in the Olympics progressed Darren Campbell began taking part in more individual events, including the 200 m sprint at the 2000 Sydney Games, previous success in individual races also included the 1998 Olympic Games where he won a silver medal for team GB.

As an Olympic speaker Darren Campbell is engaging and passionate, he is heavily involved in the Youth Sport Trust and promotes sports for children and at schools; this genuine interest in sport and the positive promotion of sport make Campbell a fantastic choice for sports speaker; his experience as both an Olympic athlete and training coach leave him in an excellent position from which to inspire and advise would be sportsmen and women.

Alongside his success as an athlete and as an Olympic speaker Darren Campbell was awarded an MBE in 2005. He retired from actively taking part in sport the following year.

Alongside his work on television, Campbell has also been the sprint coach at London Wasps for the past two years, but has worked a t a number of Premier League football clubs including Chelsea. Additionally, Campbell was also part of the coaching team that helped Cardiff City gain promotion to the Premier League.


Luke Thomas – Chef

At 18 years old Luke Thomas become Chef Patron of his first restaurant Luke’s Dining Room which won Berkshire and Buckinghamshire Restaurant of the Year in 2013.  At just 20 years old Luke opened Retro Feasts, an exciting pop-up social diner concept in Mayfair focusing on recreating childhood favourites into cleverly revitalised dishes for today’s open-minded diners2015 saw Luke launch Retro Feasts in Dubai as the diner’s first permanent residence and his first overseas venture.  Founder of Luke’s Broadway, Luke has partnered with Puma Hotels to create this Modern British Bistro in the heart of the Cotswolds.  Luke’s first book ‘Luke’s Cookbook’ was published by Penguin in 2014 and has been very well received by the public.  Luke doesn’t stop there, his latest project has been opening and nurturing restaurant Luke’s Eating House & Gin Rickey’s Bar in Chester.

Luke Thomas won FutureChef 2009, coming top against 7,500 competitors aged just 15, and whether it be for one week, one month or one year, Luke has gone on to work with some of the UK’s top chefs.

Born in North Wales, Luke balanced his school studies with weekend and evening jobs in the Michelin starred kitchens of the Chester Grosvenor Hotel & Spa, the acclaimed restaurant Soughton Hall, and alongside award-winning butcher Steve Vaughan. Setting his sights high, Luke went on to secure further experience at some of the top restaurants in the world including, Gary Rhodes, Jamie Oliver’s Barbecoa and three Michelin-starred restaurants such as Alinea in Chicago. Luke has worked with the UK based Individual Restaurant Company who own brands such as Piccolino and Restaurant Bar and Grill.

Luke competed for Wales in the 2013 series of BBC2’s ‘Great British Menu’ and was also the focus of BBC Three’s documentary ‘Britain’s Youngest Head Chef’ which looked at his amazing achievement of becoming Chef Patron of Luke’s Dining Room at just 18 years old. Other television work includes Market Kitchen (UKTV Food) and appearances on Channel 4’s show ‘What’s cooking?’ as a mystery guest on ‘Russell Howard’s Good News’ and ITV’s ‘This Morning’.


Owen Paterson MP – MP for North Shropshire


Shropshire-born Owen Paterson has been MP for North Shropshire since 1997 and held the position of Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs between 2012-2014.

Owen read History at Cambridge University and after graduating went on to join the family leather business, becoming Managing Director in 1994.

For more than 18 years Owen has campaigned on behalf of his constituents for local Primary Schools, improved transport services, better health provision, Post Offices, local Magistrates Courts and against regional police forces.