This week we introduce you to our events team at Lysaght, from General manager extraordinaire to events team. This article will give you a brief insight into each of the team and what makes them tick.
From L-R (Amy, Helen, Chris, Bethan, Kelly)
Bethan Blackburn - General Manager
Bethan has managed Lysaght since 2016. Before this, Bethan ran her own very successful limited company in event styling and coordination for many years. She brings a wealth of experience, creative flair in abundance, a genuine warmth and a real passion for the wedding and hospitality industry. Bethan is an award winning client and customer relationship manager. Her experience in events spans 19 years within both business management and customer relationship management for a global banking giant. Bethan has secured her place as a recognised event planner in the Newport and greater South Wales area, with many guests asking for her by name. Nominated for new Newport business of the year , Bethan has also achieved awards in telephone sales and received a recognition award for the highest test call for Hilton UK. Bethan has helped drive Lysaght from strength to strength, each year building on the success of the last, in fact Bethan has led Lysaght to win two V Awards, in 2018, Lysaght won "Wedding Coordinators of the Year" and in 2019 "Bespoke Wedding Venue of the Year"
On planning weddings, Bethan says "After being in the industry for more than 16 years you hear many tips from different people within the wedding sector. All are so valuable but some are focused on swaying your opinion for a sale. This can be confusing and you end up with a never ending list of ideas and changes to your theme and suppliers. There are five points that I will always share and these are;
1 Decide a colour, choose your theme by closing your eyes and saying what the room looks like in your minds eye. This will help you decide on décor and a colour palette for the day. Do this if you can before Pinterest or seeing suppliers.
2 Guest lists can be the root cause of arguments when planning a wedding and whilst we would love to celebrate with everyone, there are venue capacities and budgets that need to be considered. It sounds ruthless but If you don’t buy them a birthday card or present then why would you spend a lot of money on them for your wedding meal? If it's because you cannot imagine your day without them, then this is different.
3 When planning your day, always start your timeline from the finishing time and work backwards, this will give you an idea of what you would like from your day and what time you can look at getting married. You do not want to have a 2 hour gap to fill in the day if you get married too early, and do not want to try and compact the time and not enjoy your day.
4 Do not print your table plan until one week before the day, as from experience, there are always changes up until then.
5 Never be afraid to ask us as Wedding Co-ordinators for help and advice with your day. We may work for the venue you have booked, but we do this because we love our jobs and want to spend your special day with you and make your dreams come true.
Helen Jones - Project and Events Executive
Helen has been with Lysaght since 2018 and since then has very quickly become the font of all knowledge for all things project management here. With a keen eye and attention to detail, Helen is an experienced senior project support professional with strong leadership and relationship building skills. Helen is analytically minded and the consummate professional, bringing a unique mix of 30 years of progression enjoyed in a variety of roles. Previous roles for Helen have included heading up the project management team for large telecoms contracts including deployment, and personal assistant roles in hospitality and customer service. Helen became quickly recognised for the ability to quickly and effortlessly deputise for senior members of staff; utilising a motivational leadership style to engage and enthuse teams conducive to service excellence.
On project management, Helen had this to say "As more and more of our everyday busy life becomes project-based, it follows that more and more people are finding themselves in the process of managing projects. Project Management empowers people to deliver results and this is all about the team work. Better project planning equals better results for everything. Project Management is something that is so important to me as an individual to help balance work and home life and is also critical within our hospitality industry.
Christopher Gale - Sales and Events Executive
Chris joined the team in June 2019 as a Sales and Events Executive. Chris originally worked in hospitality 15 years ago as a weekend waiter in a country pub. Chris soon realised he had a passion for hospitality, he worked in a variety of venues from hotels to well known pub chains, eventually making his way up to Chef de Partie at a successful bistro in the New Forest training with chefs who have worked with Rick Stein, Gordon Ramsey and Marco Pierre White. Due to Chris' vast experience, his duties include bar management and ensuring the continued growth and flourishing bar. Chris is an Approved Personal Licence Holder and also holds an SIA front line license in door supervision.
Chris' top tip from the bar "If you have spent your hard earned cash on choosing a quality spirit, treat your mixer in the same way. Buy the best you can afford. There is nothing worse than having a quality spirit ruined by a poor quality mixer. A good mixer enhances the flavour profile of the spirit and can often open up some of the more complex flavours, this is especially true of dark spirits."
Amy Craig - Operations and events executive
Amy joins us from the well known Copthorne Hotel in Cardiff. Amy is an experienced sales and events coordinator and has also worked for the locally renowned Parc Pantry, who are a local thriving business, organising their lively events calendar including working with staff from a social enterprise background and leadership role.
On event coordination Amy says "Co-ordinating events for Lysaght is so varied. One day you are planning a conference for 50 guests and the next day you are running a full wedding day for 180 guests. My one piece of advice is to be prepared for anything. Honestly I mean anything. If the weather is slightly windy you plan for a hurricane just in case. Preparation is the key with events and at Lysaght we have probably thought of every scenario just in case so you don’t have to."
Kelly Dovey - Caretaker
Kelly originally joined Lysaght as a domestic assistant ensuring the building looks immaculate every time. It soon became apparent that her 5 plus years at Newport City Homes made her much ore qualified and experienced for her role. Kelly uses her extensive knowledge and experience to manage the buildings stock control, report faults and coordinate rooms during our evening hours ready for the next day. Kelly's keen attention to detail means that the building is always beautifully presented and we often receive comments on how well kept the building and grounds are, which is a testament to Kelly's commitment and dedication.
The internet brought you Mrs. Hinch, we bring you Kelly's top tip for a beautiful home "