60 seconds with the Chair - Paul Brough - H&S Working Group
1. What brought you into the event industry?
I was in the Royal Air Force Fire & Rescue Service for 23 years and was asked to take control of the H&S for the fire department. I started to work for Olympia London in 2003 as a fire auxiliary, and then when I was due to finish my service in the RAF in 2008 a Fire & Safety officers position came up at Olympia London, with my fire safety and H&S background I was fortunate enough to get the role. I was then promoted to venue H&S manager in 2010 and then promoted again in 2015 to Group H&S manager, so I guess you could say I stumbled into the role of H&S within the events industry, but I wouldn't change a thing now.
2. Why did you get involved with the association working groups?
I have always liked being involved with the working groups, as I am very keen to help to make the industry as safe as possible and to be at the forefront of helping to implement new and improved safety procedures and policies.
3. What do you think the best show, exhibition or conference was last year?
My favourite every year is the London International Horse Show.
4. What will be the next big change in venues?
The challenge as always is ensuring that all venues and contractors are coordinating SWP, so we are all singing from the same hymn sheet. The industry working groups are definitely part of that overall goal.
5. What piece of event tech is going to be indispensable in the future?
The iPad, it's currently what we use at Olympia London by the venue fire and safety officers. Having all of the shows information on the iPad allows us to monitor the show through each stage of the shows tenancy, and it also allows us to communicate directly with the organisers while the FSO's are on the show floor.
6. What's your favourite quote, saying or motto?
We never leave anyone with a problem; we will always try and leave them with a solution!
7. What's the best piece of advice you've ever been given?
Always be polite and courteous, it's difficult for someone to be angry with you when you are being extremely nice and helpful to them.
8. Which historical event would you most like to host at your venue?
We held the Volleyball competition during the Olympic games at Earls Court, which was a fantastic experience, so I would love to hold a similar event at Olympia London for such a prestigious event.
9. What film, book or TV series have you been recommending to others recently?
House of Cards, with Kevin Spacey.
10. What music are you listening to at the moment?
11. If you could attend any event, in the past, present or future, what would it be?
I would love to go back and see the first Apollo mission to the moon take off from the Kennedy Space Centre in 1969.