What was your first ODL event and what do you remember about it?
My first ODL event was a short linear evening walk close to home, along the river Trent, and then the train back home. It was a perfect, late summer evening for it. I got there way too early, which didn’t help my (quite natural) nerves about what it would be like and about the people I’d meet. Really needn’t have worried – the leader made a particular effort to introduce me to others as he knew I was new to ODL, and I soon relaxed and enjoyed myself, getting chatting to some lovely guys. We ended up – as ODL walks frequently do! – in a pub for a pint and some food, a really nice end to the evening. I went home feeling good and was hooked on ODL – I’ve done a lot of events since then and I think ODL is a fantastic thing to be part of. The magic we often talk about is real!
What are you looking forward to most in the job?
Right now – I’m looking forward to getting started! There wouldn’t be an ODL without the leaders and regional co-ordinators, and they are at the very heart of the organisation. What I’m really looking forward to is helping and supporting them with whatever they feel they need, in order to make the ODL experience even better for all our existing members, across a wide range of events. I hope that also attracts more new members to the group, as ODL’s good reputation spreads.
What is your favourite part of the UK?
Difficult question! There's so much to love in the UK, and when you get out there you realise just how lucky we are to have such a diverse and beautiful landscape. I love living so close to the Peak District and all that it offers, but my absolute favourite place is the Yorkshire Dales. It’s my “go-to” place for a weekend away. I love the dramatic landscapes of the Dales that take your breath away - metaphorically speaking, as well as in reality when walking up those hills! The Dales are so typically picture-postcard British, with so much to see and do, I love Yorkshire food and drink (including the ales!) - and the people are great too!
What is your dream holiday?
I was thinking of which far-flung destination I would give for this answer, but the truth is that the location is the less important factor here! I’d like to be somewhere with my family and / or close friends, where we can have a lot of fun together and share the good times. Maybe a nice villa in rural France with a pool, sunshine, great food (especially cheese!) something cold in a glass and plenty of laughter. That would do me, simple tastes really!