Any suggestion that Amazon is about to take over the world of bookselling was put in check with the early June launch of Foyles. You’ll remember that after a century in the same building, the bookshop has moved down the road to a new flagship store at 107 Charing Cross Road, the former home of Central Saint Martins.
We knew the opening, headed up by our PR team alongside our new Events Director, Lizzie Grumbach, was going to be fabulous. But it exceeded all expectations. Over 700 guests gathered in the hugely impressive atrium, in ‘the sexiest shop on the street’, for the launch. Following passionate speeches from Christopher Foyle and Caitlin Moran, the guests explored the four miles of shelves and enjoyed the Foyles Festival Chorus, jazz, canapés, champagne and the new toilet facilities!
Double Man Booker winner, Hilary Mantel, officially opened the shop a few days later and she was followed by a series of high profile writers each of whom opened a different section of the bookshop. 'If God had been a bookseller' she declared, 'then he could have done no better than welcome you to this new temple of words'.
Do go and have a look – and if you’re in Waterloo station you should also pop into the other new Foyles bookshop which opened there this month too. And look out for Jeffrey Archer’s latest book Be Careful What You Wish Forwhich is now enjoying its 13th week in the top ten!
Adult Learners’ Week falls in June. Run by the National Institute of Adult Continuing Education (NIACE) it is a nationwide celebration of people who have benefited from after school learning. The Four Colman Getty campaigning team worked with a number of practices within Four to organise regional ceremonies up and down the country, resulting in some terrific coverage in both the regional and national media.
Another cross company success to report this month is that Four passed its Investors In People assessment with flying colours. An important business tool, Investors In People is internationally recognised as a leading business improvement framework and quality standard, and is the only one which is ‘people focused’.
Four Colman Getty’s Matt Railton and Rosie Beaumont-Thomas, along with three other Four Communications colleagues, last week cycled an astonishing 500km in four days from London to Paris. Riding with 230 other cyclists, all raising funds to beat blood cancer on behalf of Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research, the team climbed a total 3,700m of hills.
The ‘Team Fourmidable’ has so far raised £5,700 for Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research, Four Communications’ charity of the year, and we all look forward to watching them sweat it out in a special half hour documentary on the ride on Eurosport just ahead of the Tour de France starting today.
The second Dinefwr Literature Festival, which celebrates the spoken word in its many forms, was a triumph. The weather couldn’t have been better; the location of the National Trust’s Dinefwr Park and Castle was breath-taking and tickets sales exceeded expectations. Over the weekend there were over 100 events - English and Welsh language author events, comedy, music and plenty to do for children - making this the perfect family festival. And no mud!
In amongst the better known names the festival had programmed some incredible up and coming talent from Wales whose ascent to stardom we’ll be watching closely. Feedback from artists and festival goers was overwhelmingly positive with one twitter mention from Radio 1’s Huw Stephens saying it had been ‘a total pleasure’. Which really, it was.
Latin America has been a focus for us this month, not only because of the football but because of PINTA. Europe’s only art fair dedicated to work from Latin America, Spain and Portugal, the show had its fifth airing at Earls Court this month. Over 50 international galleries presented their work and audience figures were once again on the increase.
Still in the field of top design, acclaimed British jewellery designer, Alex Monroe, opened the 29th New Designers in Islington last week with a speech urging government to reinstate the support of art and craft in schools. New Designers is an inspiring project for us to work on and it’s enormously exciting to see the creations of the 3,000 design graduates who take part in the two-week show.
Finally some wonderful news for Four Colman Getty. We have been appointed by Wales Millennium Centre to handle PR and communications around their 10th anniversary celebrations which kick off this autumn. It’s going to be a fantastically exciting project, working alongside newly appointed Artistic Director, Graeme Farrow (of City of Derry fame) so watch this space!
More next month