INTRODUCING...TOM RING, SENIOR PROJECT MANAGER

Tom Ring joined Hawthorn back in 2009. In his first job out of university, Tom has held a number of roles here, starting as a technician, before progressing to become a valued member of our Create team. Based out of our Cambridge office, Tom manages a wide range of projects, but spends the majority of his time leading on events at Battersea Evolution, where Hawthorn is the in-house lighting and sound provider. With lots of projects on the go, let’s jump straight into getting to know a bit more about him…

You’re our go-to guy for Battersea Evolution. What does a typical event day look like for you?

It sounds clichéd but there is no such thing as a typical day, as every event is unique. For most Battersea events however, we’ll be in and out within 24 hours, which requires lots of planning to ensure things go smoothly on the day.

We provide full technical production in the venue, and also work to facilitate incoming production companies – where we provide power and rigging as the ‘in-house' provider.  I normally look after production jobs – where we provide lighting, sound and video to drapes, rigging and power.  If an event is running, I’ll arrive on site at 6am to oversee the entire build, stay at the venue throughout the event to make sure everything goes well for the client and to manage any hiccups. Once the after party is in full swing, it’s time for me to go home and hand over the de-rig to my colleagues.

What makes Battersea Evolution so unique?

It’s a purpose-built venue, meaning that clients have this huge blank canvas that can be transformed in any way the client wants – it leaves lots of room for our creativity to let loose.

From a more practical point of view it has no loading restrictions – a rarity in London! It’s really straightforward to install rigging and power, and after working in partnership with the venue owners Smart for a number of years, we’re familiar with every aspect of the venue and can easily make recommendations for solutions to client requirements.

Tell us about some of your most memorable events?

There are so many to choose from, but a couple stick out for me. One is a recent event we managed for The Garden Bridge Project; Glitter in the Garden was a very different type of event in the venue.  The event was for 500 people, a long way from the usual 1200+, allowing us to create a much more intimate space with some really creative lighting.

I also really enjoyed working on the Hay Festival 2015. Festivals are a departure from my normal events so it presented a unique set of requirements for me to get to grips with.

Does any event stick out as being particularly challenging?

One of my favourite – and most challenging – events was an amazing wedding in Rome last year. I had to coordinate the transport of all our lighting, rigging and sound equipment to a villa in Rome, where we helped to deliver a truly spectacular and impressive celebration. Held outside – and experiencing some rain! – it presented a unique set of challenges from our usual events.

And finally, what is your favourite TV show?

That’s a tough one but it’s got to be House of Cards, I’m really into that one at the moment.