pro-manchester Creative Conference 2023

Date: Friday 22nd September 2023
Time: 09:00 AM - 03:30 PM
Location: HOST Salford, dock10 Studios, BLUE, MediaCity UK, M50 2ST
Cost: £60 live ticket (member) / £75 live ticket (non-member) / £30 virtual ticket (member) / £50 virtual ticket (non-member)
Creative Digital and Media
Key Events
Member Event
SME Club

Manchester is recognised as one of Europe's largest creative, digital and technology clusters and is home to a fast-growing £5billion digital ecosystem.

Come along to pro-manchester's Creative Conference & hear from experts from Manchester's creative community, collaborating and sharing their expertise with the wider business community. Don't miss this opportunity to stay ahead in the ever-evolving creative sector.

Topics to include data-driven marketing, talent recruitment, socialmedia strategies, PR in the digital world, content marketing,ethics, privacy, copyright protection, and the future of digital marketing. Discover emerging trends, technologies, and strategies that will shape the industry and our future.

View the full agenda here

About the Speakers:

James Cooper Broadcaster, Event Host, Journalist, Presenter and Communicator -

James Cooper was Sky’s man in Manchester for almost 2 decades and is a well known face and voice across the North West. A journalist, broadcaster and highly skilled communicator –  what makes James tick is getting people to tell their own stories. He has worked with some of the biggest names in sport on some of the biggest stories.

James is also a highly experienced events host and presenter.

Creativity has always been at the heart of what he has done professionally and James is  looking forward to showcasing the best of what Manchester has to offer.

Dave O'Brien Professor of Cultural & Creative Industries - The University of Manchester

Dave O’Brien is Professor of Cultural and Creative Industries at the University of Manchester. He has written extensively about inequality in the production and consumption of culture, as well as on cultural policy, urban regeneration, and cultural work. He is the co-author of Culture is bad for you and is a Co-Investigator on the Arts and Humanities Research Council funded Creative Industries Policy and Evidence Centre.

Sherelle Fairweather Digital Strategy Lead - Manchester City Council

As Digital Strategy Lead at Manchester City Council, Sherelle is responsible for the implementation of the citywide ambitious Digital Strategy, which focuses on the relationship between technology and socioeconomics within a place. Through the strategy, Sherelle drives citywide collaboration in aim to ensure – digitally skilled residents, future-proofed infrastructure, a thriving digital economy and a digitally enabled transition to zero-carbon. Sherelle has worked within the inequalities and social change space across the public and community sector for over 10 years now and is curious about the role of innovation to create valuable solutions that can benefit all.  

Mohammed Seedat Lecturer in Football Business & Marketing - IN4 Group

Mohammed Seedat is a lecturer in Football Business & Marketing. He has been following the cryptocurrency market since 2017. This led him to research emerging trends and technologies, and strategies that will shape the future of marketing. Currently, he is exploring use cases of AI, Web3 technologies and the Metaverse. He also helped design and develop the Gametech365 programme for IN4 Group. Gametech365 is a rolling 12-month scale-up programme supporting Immersive content entrepreneurs, innovators, creatives and developers. Designed for Indie Video Game Studios and Immersive technology startups that are not only developing their product, but also their business.


Lee Curtis Partner - HGF Limited

Lee is a Chartered Trade Mark Attorney at Manchester based IP law firm HGF and has 30 years’ experience of the trade mark and design law in the UK and overseas. He advises and manages the design and trade mark portfolios of some of the leading brands in the United Kingdom and across the globe and is very experienced in contentious proceedings before the UKIPO and other IP Offices.

Lee has been widely quoted and has spoken on IP matters in the press and on radio and TV, notably in the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, the Financial Times, The Times, The Sunday Times, BBC Radio 4 and BBC1. He has also written and spoken widely on the impact of AI on trade mark and design law and practice, notably being part of a panel of speakers at the United States Patent and Trademark Office in Alexandria, Virginia in January 2019 which included the heads of trade marks of both Amazon and Microsoft. Lee also contributed and spoke at the World Intellectual Property Office’s ‘Conversation on Intellectual Property (IP) and Artificial Intelligence (AI)’ hosted in Geneva in November 2020.

Andrew Blenkinsop Chief Strategy Officer - Mediaworks

Andrew Blenkinsop – Andy is the Group Chief Strategy Officer at Mediaworks, ranked by the Drum as one of the top 5 Independent Digital Agencies in the UK. Andy works with companies such as Ralph Lauren, Puma, Metro Bank and Yorkshire Water on embracing the latest digital trends and incorporating them into their marketing strategies.


Mitchel White Paid Media Strategist - connective3

Mitchel has a decade of experience in the paid media and marketing sector, collaborating with global brands. As a Paid Media Strategist at Connective3 and the best-selling author of “Serve,” he is a frequent voice in the industry championing a blend of performance and brand marketing.

Rosa Mitchell Business Director - connective3

With over nine years’ experience in digital PR and content creation, as Business Director, Rosa oversees connective3’s Manchester office, managing a large team of creative professionals. In her career, Rosa has worked across a variety of different projects, from stand-alone campaigns to long-term strategic roadmaps, for brands including Nike, Manchester Metropolitan University, Stena Line, and Ann Summers. She combines her analytical skills with her love of creativity to create concepts that work for many industries, including e-commerce, finance, law, and travel.

Hannah Craig Head of PHA North - The PHA Group

Hannah heads up PHA’s northern offices in Manchester and Leeds, leading a team based across the region to support thriving businesses and communities based in the north. Hannah’s experience includes developing compelling creative campaigns that assist high profile brands to develop and execute strategic consumer PR, influencer and social media activations. Working on several household names for companies including, Johnson & Johnson, Proctor & Gamble and Essity.


Daniel Hoggan Chief Technology Officer - mediaworks

Daniel Hoggan is Chief Technology Officer at global marketing agency, Mediaworks. He sits at the bleeding edge of the UK headquartered agency’s tech adoption and development. In his 15 years at the agency, he’s led on the successful implementation of numerous proprietary tools which set Mediaworks apart as a data and insight driven digital agency. He is also the arbiter of the adoption of new tools into the marketplace, most recently speaking extensively on AI’s place in marketing and specifically within Mediaworks’ delivery capabilities.


Tom Oulton Digital Transformation and BIM Lead - Rider Levett Bucknall

Tom is Digital Transformation and BIM Lead at Rider Levett Bucknall. Tom is an experienced digital construction professional with extensive industry experience including working on-site with specialist SME contractors to implementing digital transformation strategies for international asset portfolio holders. Tom has an in-depth expert knowledge of Building Information Modelling (BIM) and the ISO19650 suite of documents and guidance and their application across all industry sectors and clients.

Tom is currently chair of the Constructing Excellence “Digital by Default” group and Constructing Excellence in Yorkshire and Humber, co-chair of the nima Regions and part of the Government Industry Interoperability Group (GIIG).

Steve Connor Co-founder and CEO - Creative Concern

Steve is co-founder and CEO of Creative Concern. An experienced strategist, writer and communications consultant, Steve specialises in ethical and sustainability issues, integrated campaigns, city strategies, brand development and creating strange installations out of trees, lights and beautiful type.

Recent projects include work with C40 cities, World Green Building Council, World Resources Institute, Aberdeen Chamber of Commerce, Newcastle City Council, Plymouth City Council and the Greater Manchester Combined Authority.

Steve’s spent the last few years also helping to create a European network of partner agencies, called Do Not Smile –

He is currently a board member of the Greater Manchester LEP, and was recently the interim chair of the Community Forest Trust and has previously chaired Manchester’s Climate Change Partnership. A long time ago he was Communications Director at Sustainability Northwest and Head of Campaigns at the Vegetarian Society of the UK.

Specialties: Particular areas of expertise include climate change, place making, city strategies, culture, sustainable transport, food issues and the natural environment.

Clair Wescott Managing Director - Fresh Digital

Clair Wescott, managing director of Fresh Digital, has been a leading figure in the Manchester digital industry for almost 20 years. From leading large teams to delivering on digital strategy, mentoring and being a pioneer for digital change.

Clair has worked closely with development teams at Google to help shape products, worked with some of the largest brands to create innovative campaigns that deliver on objectives, and built up her own in-house teams of experts to help her on the way.

Clair is also the Chair of the pro-manchester Creative, Digital & Media Committee.

Michelle Brown Marketing Manager - DWF

Michelle has over 25 years’ experience in business-to-business and consumer public relations, social media and marketing. With previous experience in sales this has allowed Michelle to provide a strong and broad based approach, assisting organisations achieve their goals.

Her experience has covered several industry sectors including technology and telecommunications where she worked with leading brand names including Microsoft, Cisco Systems and IBM; start-ups – third sector organisations – Huddersfield Literature Festival and consumer brands such as Mercedes, Nescafé and Braun. She now works within the professional services industry at DWF Law.

Michelle has global experience having worked across EMEA, US and AsiaPac when she was based in Hong Kong.

Providing adept strategic advice and counsel at board level, Michelle has successfully helped businesses to integrate all aspects of traditional, digital and social media platforms, making marketing an integral part of a company’s overall plan to achieve success.

Kenny Metham Senior Influencer Marketing Manager - connective3

Kenny is the Senior Influencer Marketing Manager at connective3 taking care of all things influencer and organic social. Working 3 years freelance alongside studies but only having 2 years of agency experience, Kenny has made his mark on the industry due to his unique dual perspective. As well as creating influencer marketing campaigns and social strategies for some globally recognised brands, Kenny has also grown his own social media to a following of over 40,000 through engaging content.

Peter Dickinson Founder / Co-Founder - KUB/Vyzion International

Peter Dickinson is the Founder of KUB and Co-Founder of Vyzion International. He is also a long established business coach and digital marketer and has worked with over 600 businesses from a wide range of sectors over the last 22+ years. Peter has worked with technology for the last 40+ years and holds several degrees including an MBA from the Open University.

Peter and the team launched Vision2Success to help ambitious business owners grow their businesses, disrupt their sectors, and develop a vision that delivers on their goals. Vision2Success offers a range of services, including free workshops, a comprehensive guide to digital marketing in the form of an eBook, free and more in-depth paid online learning, marketing support, and support as outsourced marketing support through our 90-day marketing accelerator programme.


Richard Gahagan CEO / Founder - WeAreAdam

Richard Gahagan is the CEO and co-Founder of We Are Adam. Established in 2006, We Are Adam specialise in resourcing and recruiting talent across C-Suite, HR, and Digital Marketing, both in the UK and Europe, for businesses that are facing challenges with growth, hiring, and people management.

During his time at the helm of We Are Adam, Richard has aided businesses of all types – from small start-ups to global giants – plan, shape, and execute bespoke hiring strategies, alongside helping them understand the importance of culture, employer brand, and retention.

At the start of 2023, Richard proudly led the business into Employee Ownership, helping secure the long-term future of We Are Adam, its employees, and its clients and candidates.

Mark Westaby Co-founder & Dirrector - Metricomm

Mark Westaby, is co-founder and Technical Director at Metricomm. He originally founded Metrica, one of the country’s first media evaluation companies, in 1993, growing it to become the world’s largest independent media evaluation company before being sold to Durrants/Gorkana, in 2009, and subsequently Cision. Mark was also one of the founders of AMEC (the Association for Measurement and Evaluation of Communication), chairing the Association for over four years in the early 2000s. He co-founded Metricomm in 2020, having developed a proprietary algorithm and AI model for measuring the real effectiveness and impact of media coverage on consumer behaviour and key business outcomes such as search, sales, reputation and share price. Metricomm works with blue-chip clients in broadcast, consumer electronics, education, professional services and other sectors; as well as several of the UKs leading PR & communications agencies in support of their client accounts.

Anna Wharton Head of Communications - Agent.

As Head of Communications at Agent, I lead the dedicated and talented communications team by supporting, delivering and overseeing integrated communications campaigns for our clients – including PR, social media, partnership management, media buying and performance marketing. I am also part of Agent’s SLT, working on the development and delivery of our ongoing business ambitions and plans.
Prior to joining Agent, I was at a tigerbond, an international comms agency, for 10 years, as associate director, supporting teams to deliver comms campaigns for a wide range of trade, consumer and corporate clients including Specsavers, Biffa, Coop, Butterkist and Kettle Chips.
I specialise in PR and comms campaign planning and execution, as well as team leadership and people development. During my early career, I also worked in events and journalism.

Lisa French Founder / Managing Director - Truth Creative

Truth PR offers a wide range of PR services with a growing reputation for harnessing the power of digital platforms to influence online decision making.

Lisa oversees the whole of Truth PR, specifically focusing on the strategic delivery of client activity, supporting the wider team and managing the company’s operations.

Regardless of the brand or service, Lisa ensures all Truth’s clients are provided with high standards, unparalleled customer service and a definitive return on investment.

Alex Downing Account Director - CNS Media

Alex has worked in the marketing industry – primarily focusing on the North West – for the last 20 years.

After a couple of years in National press, the bulk of Alex’s career to date has been spent in the radio industry, with an 8 year stint at GMG Radio (which became Communicorp UK) followed by a 5 year stay at Global.

With extensive experience in radio, digital audio and OOH, Alex made the move into the agency world 2 years ago, joining the rapidly-growing team @ CNS Media as an Account Director.

With TV advertising expertise now added to his CV, Alex specializes in data-driven campaigns across traditional Above-the-line channels.”

Andreea Avramescu Director of People - IN4 Group

Andreea is a multi-award-winning educator and data science expert who holds a Bachelors degree in Social Sciences, a Masters in Data Science, and a PhD focused on data-driven business decision-making from The University of Manchester. Andreea has extensive teaching experience at university and industry-led bootcamps, alongside extensive project knowledge in leading roles. She has previously held consultancy and research positions, which includes working with The Alan Turing Institute, and is an advocate for equal access to education, social entrepreneurship, and data literacy. Recently, she has joined The Global Undergraduate Awards as a Business Panel judge. She oversees the people operations, learner experience, and industry projects for IN4 Group’s Skills City operation. The overarching aim of her role is to bridge the access to tech and support people and companies to best place their talent through industry led bootcamps and training programmes such as AWS’ Training Program or Cisco’s Networking Academy.

Sue Souter Associate Director - Jargon PR

Sue has been working in PR for over 30 years championing storytelling and the power of a unique tale told brilliantly to create brand stand out. A former journalist turned comms strategist Sue applies news principles to content creation to help drive the best possible engagement. With consumer, business to business and now fast-moving tech sector experience at Jargon PR Sue is ideally placed to coach clients and colleagues alike in best practice across owned, earned and shared media programmes.

Interested In The Event?

If you’re interested in attending, you can book online here.

For any further enquires about this event, contact [email protected]

Sponsored by: