LinkedIn Local returns to Portsmouth for a night of networking after being cancelled last year

A POPULAR business event has returned to Portsmouth, allowing people to network in person while also raising money for charity.

By Sophie Murray
Monday, 29th November 2021, 2:16 pm
Updated Monday, 29th November 2021, 2:16 pm

More than 120 people attended the event at the Village Hotel, North Harbour, last Thursday, after events had been cancelled last year due to the pandemic.

Attendees all had their temperatures checked by Fever Checker Pro before being greeted by a Stormtrooper and Mickey Mouse, courtesy of Go Geek Events.

Guests were treated to a talk from training consultant and author Martine Bolton, who explained how people can be superheroes if they realise their capabilities and use thinking as their superpower.

LinkedIn Local Pictured:Rebecca Wheeler, Martine Bolton, Karen Vaughan, Sau-Wan Lai, Ian Gribble Claire Ede and Bob Ede Picture: Habibur Rahman

Sponsoring the event was chartered surveying company Wheeler & Lai and digital advertising agency Madfrog.

Rebecca Wheeler, director of Wheeler & Lai said: ‘It’s great to have some balance back at a strange time, these events are so much fun and always really popular. Also because they help charities that really gives an edge for me.’

Co-director, Sau-Wan Lai said: ‘It’s always a great occasion with such a positive atmosphere and we’re also really pleased to help the Elizabeth Foundation this year.’

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LinkedIn Local Picture: Habibur Rahman

Claire Ede, sales director at Madfrog, was pleased to be back as a sponsor after the event was cancelled last year.

She said: ‘We were supposed to sponsor the event last year which was cancelled, so it’s great to be here.

‘Particularly this year there’s an energetic atmosphere which is great. I have family who have benefitted from the charity so as a business giving back and also getting promotion in return, it’s a win win.’

This event’s charity was The Elizabeth Foundation in Portsmouth, which is celebrating its 40th year supporting deaf children and their families.

LinkedIn Local host and organiser, Ian Gribble Picture: Habibur Rahman

All profits from ticket sales went to the charity, which amounted to £1,855, and included a £200 anonymous donation from an individual who was unable to attend.

Deputy CEO Karen Vaughan said she was thrilled to be back in the community at the event, and was grateful for the support of the sponsors.

She said: ‘This event particularly resonates with us because we teach deaf people to learn to listen and talk, and networking is all about communication.’

‘The sponsors help to boost our income which was lost from the pandemic, so more donations mean more children can have a positive difference made to their lives.’

Ian Gribble, who works at photocopying firm Clarity Copiers, organises the LinkedIn Local events for free.

Ian said: ‘It feels a bit surreal to be back, but it just shows the support of the people involved and the keenness of people wanting to get back to face to face networking. Thank you to everyone who came, if people didn’t come there’d be no event.’