More Industry Leaders Announced To Join Big Marketing Meet Up 2023

Belfast’s leading marketing conference the Big Marketing Meet Up has announced the latest additions to its speaker lineup.

Roger Edwards, Jude Morrow, and James Poulter will join expert speakers from the world of marketing for a day of inspiration and knowledge-sharing at W5 in Titanic Quarter on November 14, 2023.

Treena Clarke, Founder of Big Marketing Meet Up, said she was delighted to announce the latest speakers: “We’re thrilled to welcome Roger Edwards, Jude Morrow, and James Poulter to our growing roster of speakers. Their expertise will undoubtedly enhance the quality of discussions and insights at this year’s event.”

Roger Edwards, known as ‘The Marketing Simplifier’, brings over 40 years of marketing experience to the event. He helps companies simplify their marketing strategies and set clear goals. Edwards is excited to share his insights on marketing and planning in his upcoming session. 

He explained: “Undoubtedly digital marketing has been phenomenally successful for businesses of all sizes over the last decade or so. Especially small businesses. It’s given them access to marketing techniques that before would only have been available to those companies with gigantic eye-watering budgets. But, there have been consequences to the success of digital marketing. 

“I think it’s time to stop talking about digital marketing and just start talking about marketing again. It’s only a subtle difference, but hopefully, on the 14th of November in Belfast, I’ll tell you why I believe this is an essential move for marketers all over the world.”

Delivering not one but two keynote speeches at the Big Marketing Meet Up is James Poulter, the founder and CEO of Vixen Labs and former Head of The LEGO Group’s Emerging Platforms & Partnerships team. Throughout the day he will take attendees on a journey to foster a culture of innovation within their businesses. 

He explained: “In the morning we’re going to be focusing on how you build a playful culture that embeds innovation at its heart, how do we make sure that we stay competitive, how do we stay creative and how do we ultimately stay collaborative in order to deliver innovation into the next decade. 

In his afternoon session, he will take a look at the future of technology. 

“We’re going to look at how these things converge together to change the way in which we did business, work and play. And we’re going to think more about how you are going to be able to capture the benefits of these technologies into the next decade” he said.

Also joining the event’s lineup is Jude Morrow, an Irish autistic best-selling author and founder of Neurodiversity Training International, who will provide valuable insights into creating more accessible communications for the neurodivergent community. 

He emphasises the importance of getting neurodiversity right. 

“I will be giving a presentation all about the topic of neurodiversity. Because neurodiversity has become the new DEI (diversity, equity, and inclusion) sexy buzzword of the week and guess what? Everybody does it wrong,” he said, adding: “Neurodiversity can be done properly. In your organisation, in your day-to-day life, and everything else around it.”

The Big Marketing Meet-Up is designed to empower passionate marketers with fresh insights and expert knowledge. With this new lineup of speakers, attendees can look forward to a day of stimulating discussions and interactive sessions.

Organiser Treena added: “The success of our last meet-up showed the demand for a program that provides key insights and discussions in a fun environment. 

“Our speakers and attendees ensure that this will be an event created by marketing professionals, for marketing professionals. It’s time for marketers to take time out, learn, and energise.”

To find out more about the programme and to secure tickets, go to

Ards Arts Centre Opens New Exhibitions for November

Ards Arts Centre in Newtownards is delighted to welcome two new art exhibitions this November: In Search for the Past, a joint exhibition by Maria and Anna Horvathova and Curious Carnival, a solo exhibition by Anna Donovan.

Having graduated with an MFA from Belfast School of Art in 2023, Maria and Anna Horvathova have been developing their practices in painting, installation and lens based experimental discipline. 

In their current practices, both explore ideas of home, identity, and memory. They are interested in creating landscapes that tell stories and remind the viewer of old feelings and moments. Their connection and perception of the landscape has developed into an appreciation of the natural world around us.

In this exhibition, Maria and Anna will curate a body of work to include oil paintings, and a selection of polaroid photographs in an installation approach. The aim of the work is to indicate and evoke feelings of appreciation towards nature and the landscapes. Being present in nature and illustrating their unique ways of responses.

Curious Carnival is a solo exhibition of ceramics by Anna Donovan. This curious exhibition will feature ceramic and mixed media sculptures playing with imagery inspired by a variety of mythological creatures combined with familiar carnival and circus tropes. Characters will have evolved from clowns, mermen, acrobats, strong men, and bearded ladies, to create a side show of curiosities!


Curious Carnival is the result of Donovan’s imagination, playing with, and nourished by childhood memories of funfairs, fairy tales, and legends.

Speaking about the exhibitions, Emily Crawford, Arts and Heritage Manager for Ards and North Down Borough Council said:

We are delighted to welcome back Maria and Anna Horvathova to Ards Arts Centre. Maria and Anna’s exhibition will feature artworks and a collaborative installation that they commenced during their month-long studio residency with us in August as part of the Creative Peninsula festival. Meanwhile Anna Donovan brings a playful and other worldly collection of figures with her Curious Carnival that will be on display in the Sunburst Gallery throughout November.

Both exhibitions open on Friday 3 November and run until Tuesday 28 November.  Admission is free during gallery opening hours.


All are welcome to attend a preview event in Ards Arts Centre on Thursday 9 November at 7pm.

For more information telephone 028 9181 0803 or email

Offers of the week from Discover Northern Ireland

Further. Space at Carrickreagh Bay, County Fermanagh

Escape to the waterways of Fermanagh and cosy up in a unique glamping pod, fully furnished with all the comforts of home, including a shower, coffee dock, mini fridge, heating, and Wi-Fi. Add to that the bonus of a stunning view of Lough Erne! You also have access to the nearby Ely Lodge Forest, in all its autumn splendour. BBQ and campfire packs are recommended!  Pods sleep 4 (two adults, two children) from £120 per pod per night, midweek. Visit for more information.

Maldron Hotel, Belfast, County Antrim

Enjoy an overnight stay in this well-placed, comfortable hotel, including tickets for one of Northern Ireland’s top attractions, Titanic Belfast! Right in the heart of the buzz of Belfast with great shopping, restaurants, historic landmarks, and public transport options right on the doorstep. B&B with tickets to Titanic Experience based on two people sharing from £157 per room. Visit  for more information.

Elephant Rock, Portrush, County Antrim

Blow the Halloween cobwebs away on the Causeway Coast in this glamorous boutique hotel. This two-night B&B deal includes an evening meal on a night of your choosing. This renovated Victorian terrace has luxurious, funky, art deco styled guestrooms with great views out to sea. From £280 per room based on two people sharing. Visit for more information.

Book in advance to avoid disappointment. Subject to availability.

For more information on what’s on or to plan a short break in Northern Ireland, visit

10 things to do in Northern Ireland

Here are ten exciting things to do 30 October- 5 November

  1. Halloween Light show, Derry~Londonderry, County Londonderry, 31 October. The first of its kind in Northern Ireland! The sky over St Columb’s Park on Halloween night, will be lit with 100 drones projecting a variety of spooky Halloween themed images. Following the Halloween Carnival Parade, this new addition to the Walled City’s Halloween Festival promises to be spectacular!
  1. Kinturk Pumpkin Patch, Moortown, County Tyrone, 30-31 October. This pumpkin patch on the shores of Lough Neagh offers not just the perfect pumpkin, but plenty of fun-filled outdoor family activity! There’s a haunted maze and children’s amusements with plenty of fabulous food and drink options on site.
  2. Finn’s Frightful Fun Fest, Bushmills, County Antrim, 31 October. There’s a spooky schedule ahead at the Giant’s Causeway. It kicks off with a treasure hunt with the chance to solve the riddles and decipher creepy clues to discover the gruesome, hidden secrets that lie within this World Heritage Site. There is also the chance to hear spooky tales of the lost spirits of the Causeway Coast or some creepy crafts to get stuck into.
  3. Fermanagh Freaky Farm, Lisbellaw, County Fermanagh, 30-31 October. Grab a trolley and off you go, over the pumpkin patch field. Pick a pumpkin of your choice and take it to the carving shed, to become your very own creative designer. Have fun and get the chance to win some spooky prizes or join the local witch at her creepy cinema.
  4. Trick or treat Hazel Wand Halloween Day, Omagh, County Tyrone, 30 October. Come along to the Strule Arts Centre and make your own wand to keep the ghouls at bay! Feel free to come in fancy dress, there’ll be singing, a ghost hunt, and crafts. Super, spooky fun, suitable from 4–11-year-olds.
  1. Hallowe’een Ghost Tour of Armagh, Armagh, County Armagh, 30 October. This one-hour walking tour will be a mix of gruesome tales from long ago coupled with a few surprises along the way. Tread these narrow streets lightly, you have no idea who is waiting for you! This is suitable for over 13 + but they must be accompanied by an adult. Ticket price includes refreshments at Red Ned’s pub.
  1. Pickie Pumpkin Patch, Bangor, County Down, 30 October. The chance to pick a pumpkin but also enjoy some great family fun for the little ones. The Pumpkin ticket includes 12 tokens to use on the Pickie attractions which include, Disco Ducks, Pickie Swans, and Circus Cars.
  2. Gruffalo & Stickman Guided Walk, Belfast, County Antrim, 30-31 October. This is Northern Ireland’s only official Gruffalo Trail, endorsed by Julia Donaldson. Experience the deep dark woods of Colin Glen Forest, with a Halloween twist. Meet your favourite characters and even stop by the pumpkin patch, where you’ll pick out your very own pumpkin to carve and take home! This 90-minute event is guaranteed to enthral!
  3. Halloween Half Term at Mount Stewart, Newtownards, County Down, 30 October-5 November. There’s lots to do this midterm, covering Halloween and beyond. Head into the house if you dare and discover tales of witches and dragons. Don’t forget to count the pumpkins hidden and on your way out stop by the craft area and make your very own Halloween decoration! Explore spooky and seasonal stories or join Up to High Doh for some mythical themed drama sessions to capture the imagination. If that isn’t enough, you can rustle through the leaves on the outside trails.
  1. Hallowe’en Torchlight Tours: In the Shadow of the Bog, Omagh, County Tyrone, 30-31 October. The soil beneath your feet holds many secrets! Come along to the American Folk Park in Omagh if you are brave enough as it brings Old Halloween to life! Something long buried has been disturbed, and a dark, dreadful energy has been awakened by Patrick McSorley after a day of cutting turf at the bog! Find out more during this torchlit tour. Book tickets online.

Booking is essential for most activities. Book in advance to avoid disappointment. Subject to availability.

For more information on what’s on or to plan a short break in Northern Ireland, visit

A Magical Christmas Experience at Titanic Belfast

Enjoy A Magical Christmas Experience at Titanic Belfast!

24th November – 23rd December 2023

Watch the excitement unfold as Father Christmas and his Elves count down to their favourite night of the year in Titanic Belfast’s A Magical Christmas Experience from 24th November – 23rd December!

Journey through the Enchanted Forest to make a wish by the Magical Wishing Tree, before stepping through the Old Curiosity Shop to enter the Elves’ Workshop. Visit Mrs Claus in her cosy kitchen to hear Christmas tales, stop by the bustling post office to write and post your Christmas letter and peek into the toy shop where the Elves have been hard at work, before letting your creative juices flow with some arts and crafts! Finally, wrap up your Magical Christmas Experience by having your name checked off the ‘Naughty or Nice’ list by the Chief Elf – those on the ‘Nice’ list will get to meet Father Christmas and receive an exclusive Titanic Belfast Bear!

Child £25 | Adult £12.50

Make Christmas memories to last a lifetime – book your tickets today at



Prepare to have your mind blown as acclaimed magician and mentalist Joel M brings his highly anticipated new show, ‘Impossible’ to Armagh’s Market Place Theatre.

The multi-talented Joel M has amassed an online following of 20+ million across TikTok, YouTube and Instagram and an impressive 4 billion views, making him a household name around the globe.

Having also showcased his talents as the current presenter on the beloved children’s programme, Blue Peter, Joel M is now set to add some magic this November to leave audiences spellbound.

‘Jole M: Impossible’ will be staged on Thursday 2 November with tickets priced at £15 each.

Then, on Saturday 4th November, the producers of ‘A Viennese Strauss Gala‘ bring ‘Magical Mozart by Candlelight’ to The Market Place Theatre for a sumptuous, fully-costumed show which will immerse you in the wonderful music and the classical baroque world of one of the greatest romantic composers of all time – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.

With beautiful settings, costumes, lighting and of course candles, the European Baroque Ensemble and world-class opera singers will perform a packed programme of classical music and song; including excerpts from the most memorable of Mozart’s operas, such as ‘The Magic Flute’, ‘The Marriage Of Figaro’, ‘Cosi Fan Tutte’ and many more.

 ‘Magical Mozart by Candlelight’ will be staged on Saturday 4 November. Tickets are priced £22 each. Tickets for both performances can be booked online at or through the Box Office on 03300 561 025.

Belfast Engineering Firm PAC Group Helps Concentrix + Webhelp Towards Net Zero

Northern Ireland engineering firm, PAC Group, has installed a solar PV system at software company Concentrix + Webhelp Belfast offices that is set to save the company between £30-£35,000 per year.

The sustainable energy solution was installed at their Maysfield site in the city and is an important step in reducing their carbon footprint and working towards net zero.

Brian Alexander, Renewables Business Development Manager at PAC Group said they performed a comprehensive roof evaluation and testing before installing the most suitable units.

“PAC worked with specialists Bauder to create a design for the project and supply a roofing mounting kit and panels along with SolarEdge inverters.”

The Bauder Solar PV System is an integrated photovoltaic system where the modules and the substructure are combined to form a single unit which is secured to the roof without any penetration of the waterproofing or roof deck.

Working closely with Sr. Supervisor Facilities Management at Concentrix, Michael O’Neill, PAC performed a comprehensive roof evaluation and got the roof spark tested for leaks.

Brian Alexander, Renewables Business Development Manager at PAC Group said: “We went down and built up a very strong relationship with Michael, he showed faith in us and we delivered.

“The ability for Concentrix + Webhelp to produce their own electricity will reduce their carbon footprint greatly, forwarding their efforts to battle global warming in Northern Ireland.”

Peter Corr, Workplace Health & Safety Manager at Concentrix + Webhelp said: “As a global business, we recognise that we have a responsibility to support and improve our local communities and the health of our planet. 

“Choosing to install solar panels at our Maysfield site is just one of our many initiatives to help reduce our carbon footprint and become a more environmentally responsible business.  By installing the solar panels, we estimate a saving of 27.53t of Co2 which is equivalent to 1264 trees planted.”

The 141.220kw system is the most lightweight system available in the market (9-12.5Kg/m2) making it highly suitable for retrofit applications – where weight loadings are often a deciding factor on whether adding PV to an existing building is feasible.

Michael O’Neill, Facilities Manager at Concentrix + Webhelp added: “It has been an absolute pleasure working with PAC on this fantastic project. Their knowledge and expertise has been second to none.”

Big Marketing Meet Up Returns For A Day Of Marketing Inspiration

Stimulating, fascinating and fun event for marketers

Marketing professionals in Northern Ireland are in for a treat as the highly anticipated Big Marketing Meet Up returns on November 14 at W5 in Titanic Quarter. 

This one-day event promises to empower passionate marketers with fresh insights, interactive sessions, and expert knowledge. 

With a diverse lineup of 15 presenters, 10 key presentations, five bitesize sessions, and a special Lego serious play workshop, the event is set to be a stimulating day of marketing inspiration.

Founder of Big Marketing Meet-Up, Treena Clarke, said the success of this year’s meet-up in May proved there was a demand for an event that provided keynote speakers and serious discussion amongst professionals in a fun environment.

“The feedback from last May’s Big Marketing Meet-Up showed that there was so much enthusiasm for a programme that will deliver what marketers need,” she explained. “Our professional environment is changing so rapidly that it is clear everyone needs to stay up-to-date with the challenges and opportunities they present.”

Treena said that what was also apparent as she moved to prepare for the November programme was that mingling with fellow marketers was an important feature.

“However, we are also going to have some serious fun,” she said. “There will be a Lego Lounge where attendees will get the chance to experience what the iconic brick brand can inspire new levels of creativity.”

Announced as the first three speakers of this impressive lineup, are Peter Craven, Creative Director of Blue Sky Video Marketing, Niraj Kapur, Managing Director of Everybody Works In Sales, and Andi Jarvis, the founder of Eximo Marketing. 

Niraj will delve into the dynamics of introverts and extroverts communicating in marketing, sharing, “I’ll be talking about how relevant that is in business in 2023.

Peter Craven will offer insights into maximising the potential of video content: “We’re gonna be talking about how to make the absolute most out of video content that you produce.”

Andi Jarvis will challenge the notion that marketing is evolving at an unprecedented pace: “I don’t believe marketing is changing all that fast. If I’m honest, I’m not sure it’s changing all that much. A few things are, such as channels and delivery methods, but are the important things changing?”


The Big Marketing Meet-Up has been organised to make sure that it is balanced between presenters and the people delivering their programmes day and daily.

“Our presenters will bring national and international experience to bear on the issues of 2024 and beyond,” Treena said. “It is easy to be overwhelmed when technologies and practices seem to be evolving every week, but our speakers and attendees can ensure that this will be an event created by marketing professionals, for marketing professionals.

“It’s time for marketeers to take time out, learn and energise.”

To find out more about the programme and to secure tickets, go to

Spooktacular Halloween Events at Galgorm Collection

It may be renowned as the night of the dead, but across Galgorm Collection, things truly come to life with a chilling line up of spooktacular events and dining experiences taking place from 23rd October – 4th November at Galgorm and The Rabbit Hotel & Retreat.


136 Fenaghy Rd, Ballymena BT42 1EA

Halloween at The Barn

(The Barn at Castle Kitchen, Saturday 28th October, 7pm – late)

If you dare to be scared this Halloween, make your way to The Barn at Castle Kitchen on Saturday 28th October for the annual Halloween Event.

Celebrate this spooky season in style, with devilish drinks promotions and live acoustic entertainment from 7pm -10pm, before sweeping the floor with your witch’s broom when the resident DJ takes to the decks from 10pm – late. This Halloween at The Barn, fancy dress is optional, but with x2 £1000 cash prize for The Best Fancy Dress, it would be a horror to miss out.

Tickets not required.


For further information or to book, please visit:

Moving To Composites Is A Natural Progression In The Fight To Net Zero

By Gavin Rankin, Technical Director at PAC Group


In the fight against climate change, every action we take can have a meaningful impact. There are the obvious things we can do, particularly in the automotive industry such as electric vehicles, sustainable fuels, and so on.

But there are also the somewhat less obvious options. Take lightweighting, for example.

Lightweighting is as the name suggests. It’s the practice of reducing the weight of a component or structure, particularly through the substitution of materials. In switching out traditionally used metals in favour of lighter weight composite materials, such as carbon fibre, there’s a substantial overall reduction in the weight of the structure. 

The benefits of utilising lightweight composites cannot be understated. Certainly, we’re all aware of the way that carbon fibre composites can increase performance. But going beyond performance, aerodynamic efficiency and the like, composite materials enable the transport industry to make a significant reduction in its carbon footprint. 

Whilst the aerospace and automotive industries are certainly making this move towards the utilisation of composite materials, it remains a somewhat gradual process. Though carbon fibre is used in aircraft, the fact of the matter is that the aerospace industry would benefit from expanding its usage of composite materials, especially where its environmental impact is concerned.

It’s no secret that the aviation industry has had a role to play in ushering in the current climate disaster. Its main source of impact has been through the burning of fuel, which then converts to CO2. This means that until synthetic sustainable fuels become more readily available or widely used, the aviation industry is difficult to decarbonise. 

Fuel is the number one cost for any airline, standing at around 30% of all total costs. To give you an idea of numbers, the average short haul flight consumes between two and three litres of fuel every 100 kilometres, per customer. 

Of course, fuel consumption naturally differs from plane to plane, depending on flight duration, the number of passengers, the model of plane and its efficiency and age — and this is exactly where the benefits of lightweighting make themselves apparent. 

Opting for composite materials, rather than metals like steel or aluminium, leads to an overall reduction in the weight of the aircraft. The lighter the aircraft is, the greater its fuel efficiency. Suddenly, a plane becomes both cheaper to operate and more environmentally sound. 

An added benefit of composite materials is that they can actually reduce the individual number of parts in an aircraft. This is due to the fact that composite materials are moulded, enabling multiple parts to be combined in a single mould during the manufacturing process. Not only is this cost effective – fewer parts and manufacturing time culminating in reduced costs – but it means that a greater portion of the aircraft can be built out of lightweight composite materials. 

The more carbon fibre you use, the greater weight you save. The lighter the aircraft, the more efficient it becomes, and greater efficiency leads to greater sustainability. 

As the transport industry catches onto the myriad benefits of lightweight composite materials, there’s an influx in demand for components made of such materials. At PAC, we’re proud to be at the forefront of this push towards an increased usage of composites.

As the leading specialist in the design and manufacture of Hot Drape Forming machines, each of our preformers are manufactured to the highest standards. Every component of the system is produced to an exceptional quality, with reliability and durability at the heart of their design.

We hold 42 patents on the hardware and software used in our preformers, solidifying our position at the forefront of the development of this innovative technology. Our Hot Drape Formers are bespoke, customised to the needs of the client.

Our innovative Hot Drape Formers are able to keep up with the high demands of leading automotive and aerospace manufacturers. We see the growing numbers of manufacturers wanting to incorporate composite materials into their vehicles; even more importantly, we understand exactly why there is this growing desire. PAC recognises the importance of this shift, and the time-sensitive nature of the need to act.

PAC Group strives to increase the efficiency of the manufacturing process through the development of forward-thinking technology. Alongside our preformers are our reticulators and resin transfer/infusions systems, each of which drive efficiency of process. They help to reduce cycle times, enabling greater change on a shorter timescale. 

Our sustainability targets have a timeframe. The aviation and automotive industries are aiming for net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. We have just over 25 years to achieve this goal, but we have a mighty journey ahead of us. 

It’s time to embrace new materials, new technologies and new ways of thinking, all of which will bring us nearer to our sustainability goals. At PAC Group we’re delighted to be at the forefront of the aerospace composites industry working with companies such as BAE, Spirit Aerosystems and Airborne to name a few.

For more information go to