Dr Apostolos Papadopoulos has been passionate about crop farming from a young age. His fascination about how plants grow, use resources and respond to environmental stimuli has fuelled his academic development as a crop and soil scientist over 10 years at various Universities. His passion for applied research resulted in being involved with the industry and establishing Crop Intellect Ltd as a vehicle to develop disruptive technologies that contribute to solving major agricultural issues globally. Having invented technologies that tackle crop productivity barriers, protected these with patents to enable global reach, the technologies are now used in millions of hectares increasing crop production sustainably. R-Leaf is his latest technology which is simply sprayed on plants and converts air pollution (NOx) into nitrogen fertiliser, contributing significantly towards reducing the impact of climate change.
After a 32 year career with the Ministry of Defence, Bev Thorogood found herself unable to cope with the demands of her full-time job as brain fog, anxiety and low self-confidence left her physically and emotionally burnt out. Making the decision to resign at the age of 52, she has gone on to build a successful business partnering with organisations including Channel 4, The Royal Air Force, Southampton University and The London Clinic among many others, to raise awareness of the impact of menopause on working women. Currently coming to terms with the realisation that at the age of 56 she almost certainly has undiagnosed ADHD, she’s found herself falling down a brand new and rather terrifying rabbit hole where menopause and neurodiversity have crossed paths creating a whole new world of questions and a distinct lack of answers.
Ed Crowther’s first job was on an organic farm, planting, picking and packing vegetables by hand. It sparked his lifelong interest in nature, the benefits it provides and how it’s all interconnected. In 2021 Ed started My Square Metre, an online platform allowing people and businesses to ‘Micro Offset’ elements of their environmental footprint through the creation of meadowland on degraded soil. Working with the University of Lincoln he is looking at ways to accelerate the re-wilding process in the UK’s rarest habitat (Wildflower Meadow) with the aim of planting 1km2 over the next 3 years.
Food Educator & Chef
Gemma is a big cheerleader for sustainable food and eating more veggies and ‘good stuff’ for the benefit of our health and overall mental wellness.
After 12 years of working in creative education and having to take a pretty massive career detour to focus on family, Gemma started exploring practical ways to support the fallout of having a child with mental health challenges. Working with the Food Foundation as a Veg Advocate really helped her to bring things into sharp focus… Food was seemingly both the cause and solution for so many of people who feel sucked into a mental health wormhole. Gemma now uses her transferable skills from her time in education to find creative ways to make healthy food taste better and tick all of the same boxes as the comfort food options that we often crave.
Through her plant-based food business, Gemma provides talks, meal kits and develops recipes to help everyone find a love of veg... even the lifelong members of the salad dodgers club!
Grim Beeper is comprised of three individually cultivated artists drawn together in blooming splendour, from the dense foliage of the Weird Garden. This sonic serendipity has flourished despite the onslaught of superfluous bureaucracy, that tries to diminish such voracious sprouting and driven by an ongoing investigation of consumer culture, these shadowy practitioners of Dada symphonics, blend and bend a palette of found sounds, tapes, primitive electronics and spoken word.
Dr Guy Mankowski was singer in the signed band Alba Nova. He is the author of novels including ‘Letters from Yelena’, which was researched in the world of Russian ballet. It won an Arts Council Literature Award, was adapted for the stage and used in GCSE training. He also writes about music, and penned ‘Albion’s Secret History: Snapshots of England’s Pop Rebels and Outsiders.’ He is a lecturer in Creative Writing at Lincoln University. During lockdown, he found himself in the unusual position of being given the archive of a famous pop star, an archive that even her family hadn't opened...
Hannah Sylvester has a passion for championing overlooked and valuable plant life, and helping the public notice the flowers at their feet, they would otherwise have walked past without a care. A qualified and registered Herbalist and long-term Nature Educator, she has been a Lecturer and Programme Lead for the last remaining botanical medicine undergraduate degree in the UK. Now she continues her ongoing education work of 12 years, curating her plant podcast, Edge of the Hedge and taking groups of people out into nature, to share stories, nurture wonder and build excitement about the wildflowers and ‘weeds’ that are so commonly underappreciated, to help people see the weeds at our feet, with new eyes.
Kala Heatherson is a Documentary Photographer currently studying a BA Hons at the University of Lincoln. After several years of street photography in the heart of Sheffield, the camera has now become her way to connect with others, extensively documenting the people and communities around her. She is currently working on several series, and is documenting her own intimate, personal transition as a proud member of the LGBT+ community.
Katherine James is a computer scientist whose research centres on machine vision solutions to biological challenges, spanning both the agricultural and conservation sectors.
She grew up on a farm, spent a lot of time behind the scenes in a natural science museum, yet was always curious about figuring out how computers work. Perhaps, from this upbringing, it is not surprising that this led her to a project where she is trying to describe plants using machine vision technology. She is currently pursuing her PhD at the University of Lincoln in high-throughput robotic phenotyping. She values science communication and has been the recipient of two conference awards, published several academic papers and been involved in teaching in various capacities.
Through her research, Katherine is working toward creating intelligent robotic systems that will help to facilitate better robot-crop interactions on next-generation farms.
Textile Artist & Change Maker
Kerry Gibson is a textile artist specialising in re-purposing denim. Her work addresses the impact the fashion industry has on both the planet and people, whilst celebrating denim as a material. Using recycled denim as a canvas on which to embellish, patch and repair she produces new art pieces and new narratives, which encourage consumers to understand our planet's finite resources and make more educated choices about the clothes they wear.
Luke Smith is the Founder & CEO of Seaweed Culture. A business focused on reducing methane emissions in livestock using seaweed. Luke graduated from the University of Lincoln studying Law where he found his passion for tackling climate change with sustainable solutions. Luke has been recognised as one of Lincolnshire’s 30 Under 30 for his business presence in Lincolnshire gaining traction to help make the livestock industry more sustainable and meet the Net Zero targets.
Matt Tango Ellerby is a singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, painter and true yellerbelly. Matt has been writing and performing songs of Lincolnshire from his houseboat on the Witham for over 25 years.
"A polymath" Mark Morris - The Bluetones
"Lovely looking and apparently a guitarist" Carla Marshall
Neil Barnby is an award winning educator working on the front line with prisoners. He has worked with young offenders, sex offenders, drug dealers and users as well as murderers and ‘white collar’ criminals. He developed a program in prison that teaches prisoners Tech skills and gets them into work, which has had a 0% reoffending rate over 5 years compared to the 60% national average. Now his work is being duplicated in around the world.
Dr Robin Kramer is a senior lecturer in Psychology at the University of Lincoln. He specialises in cognitive psychology, focussing on face perception and recognition. Using both experimental and computational approaches, he attempts to answer questions like “how do we learn new faces?” and “are we any good at matching face photographs?” He has worked in the UK, Canada, and the USA, as has published extensively on face-related topics. In addition, his broader interest in evolutionary psychology has led to the publication of his first children’s book, introducing the concept of genetic inheritance to young readers.
Entrepreneur, retired fast jet pilot and former England Ruby Union player
As a successful entrepreneur who has built companies in the Learning & Development and Consultancy sector, whilst navigating two financial crises, Rory knows about the challenges of growing a successful business and managing people. Utilising his 14 years of playing rugby at the highest level and 18 years of flying fast jets in the Royal Air Force, he is able to apply these experiences of operating in a high-performance environment to the trials and tribulations faced by CEOs, MDs and Business Owners as they try to grow their businesses. With over 20 years of working with businesses of all sizes and sectors, Rory has collated all the issues and challenges that face leaders and managers as they try to grow and created a strategy implementation methodology called LIFT that enables organisations to deliver their strategy effectively. As a thought leader, Rory also presents on business strategy at the University of Surrey and the University of Leicester’s School of Business.
Tim Marks spent over 25 years in elite sports environments; playing, coaching and development, and eventually media and communications. Tim played for or worked with Nottinghamshire County Cricket Club, Sussex County Cricket Club, England Cricket and England Rugby. He has managed award-winning participation and engagement projects notably with South Asian communities and specifically with refugees from the Afghanistan conflict. Since leaving sport Tim worked in parliamentary communications and local democracy before joining the University of Lincoln in 2019.