#BML16 Speakers

Register for #BML16BritMums Live showcases dynamite speakers from the blogging, social media, charity, journalism, TV and political worlds, making this conference enlightening, inspiring and electrifying.

Speakers are being added regularly – so make sure you check back soon.

Get your #BML16 tickets now and don’t miss out!



Anne-Marie CockburnSingle Mother Anne-Marie Cockburn lost her daughter, 15 year old Martha Fernback, in 2013 to an accidental ecstasy overdose. Within hours she began to write down her feelings as a way to channel her shock and try to make sense of the tragic loss of her only child.

Her book, 5,742 Days (the number of days Martha lived), was launched by Jenni Murray on Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour and is a real-time account of the first 102 days without her girl, poignantly finishing on what would have been Martha’s 16th birthday.

After the sentencing of the 17 year old drug dealer, Anne-Marie publicly forgave him. They have been working through restorative justice and regularly write to one another, which Anne-Marie believes has aided her healing.

Describing herself as a peaceful protester, Anne-Marie regularly visits schools and prisons to tell her story, as well as campaigning to get the subject of drugs out from the shadow and keep this important conversation going.

In her own words: “As I write this, I have been without my girl for 845 days. It sounds like a lot, doesn’t it? But in the aftermath, time becomes distorted – bereavement doesn’t wear a watch. So to represent my beloved Martha, it is my quest to align myself with those who can help progress this conversation in order to save other families from a similar loss to mine.”  

Brilliance in Blogging awards (aka the BiBs) Presenter

CarolSmillieCarol Smillie is one of TV’s best known faces. From her early career on Wheel of Fortune to the BBC’s CHANGING ROOMS, which earned her invitations to Buckingham Palace, Downing Street, an Indie award a National TV Award, a Bafta nomination, and of course Ronni Ancona’s alter ego ‘Smillie Smillie Carol Smillie’

Other shows quickly followed like Dream Holiday Home (C5) A Brush With Fame (ITV1) , she even took part in Strictly Come Dancing (BBC1) winning 5th place. She has also guested on countless shows including Friday Night With Jonathon Ross, Have I Got News For You and Who Wants To Be A Millionaire.

She has published her own book, Carol Smillie’s Working Mum’s Handbook and pre- and post-natal fitness DVD “Changing Shape’ as well as columns in Woman’s Own and The Sunday Times.

Carol was chosen to host the Duke of Edinburgh’s 80th birthday celebrations at the Royal Albert Hall and even turned her hand to comedy, treading the boards with two sellout tours of Vagina Monologues, and a further two of the hilarious ‘Hormonal Housewives’. She has just completed a second series of Finding Scotland’s Real Heroes, for STV.

In 2012 Carol entered the world of business launching her own award-winning brand DiaryDoll Pants with friend and ex-tennis champion Annabel Croft, bringing a completely new and innovative product to market, that continues to go from strength to strength, both in the UK and Australia. With customers in 14 different countries, they are revolutionising the lives of women all over the world. For more information go to www.diarydoll.com.

Shortie Session on Creativity and Inspiration

Julie Creffield speaking at BritMums Live 2016Julie Creffield, a blogger, author, entrepreneur and plus-size athlete is on a mission to get 1 million overweight and inactive women running. In 2005 she joked that if London were awarded the Olympic Games she would run the Marathon in 2012. She kept her word despite at the time being a size 22 and unable to run for even 30 seconds. Since then she has competed in hundreds of races, including 2 further marathons and Tough Mudder, billed as the toughest obstacle course on the planet.

Through her blog The Fat Girls Guide to Running she inspires thousands of women from all over the world. Her Too Fat to Run campaign challenges perceptions about health for larger ladies, moving the conversation away from its focus on weight loss and instead towards activity and wellbeing. Julie is an ambassador for Race for Life. Julie works as a consultant with England Athletics via the #ThisGirlCan campaign. Julie is currently developing her virtual 5K #OneBigFatRun into an actual event series in the UK. Julie worked with ITV’s This Morning Show on Run for your Life, which saw Julie coach 3 ladies for their first 5K. She is winner of the 2015 Running Awards best blog, was shortlisted for a Women in Sport “Encouraging Participation” 2015 award, was nominated for a Cosmo 2014 Woman of the Year award, and was shortlisted for a UK Blogging Award 2014 in the “Health & Fitness” category.

The Founders

Jennifer HowzeJennifer Howze is an award-winning journalist and blogger as well as Creative Director and Co-founder of BritMums. She blogs about family travel at Jenography.net. Previously she worked as The Times’ Online Lifestyle Editor and Alpha Mummy blogger. She frequently speaks about current events and parenting issues, appearing on TV and radio on BBC The Papers, BBC radio, and Sky News, among others. A 20-year journalism veteran, Jennifer has written for or been featured in a range of online and print publications, including The Times, The Wall Street Journal, Red magazine, The Guardian, The Independent, Travel+Leisure, Yahoo! Travel and many Conde Nast publications. She contributed to the bookStanding Up to Supernanny and Frommer’s Budget Travel Secret Hotels of Cornwall, and in 2006 Planned Parenthood awarded her a Maggie for a health writing. @JHowze


Susanna Scott portrait by Boggio StudiosSusanna Scott is a leading British blogger and a digital innovator as well as Managing Director and Co-founder of BritMums. She started the BritMums social network in 2008, after a career in marketing, as a space for parent bloggers to network, and share ideas and opportunities. She is often quoted as a pioneer in the UK Mum Blogging space, and has been named a top female entrepreneur. She has been featured in The Times, The FT, The Independent, The Guardian, The Sun, Technorati, She, Primo Baby and Red magazine, amongst others. She speaks frequently about blogging, social networking and the BritMums community at industry events. Her blog A Modern Mother ranks in the UK’s top 10 Family Travel Blogs. @amodernmother.


The speaker lineup

Sophie Bush Warehouse Home at #BML16Sophie Bush has a background in interior design, styling and publishing, although interior design and architecture remain her absolute obsession. After moving into a warehouse home in 2013, she was inspired to create mywarehousehome.com. mywarehousehome.com launched in early 2014. In October 2014, the first issue of Warehouse Home magazine was published — now regarded as the definitive title for residents of premium lofts and warehouse conversions and as the go-to design magazine for industrial, vintage and reclaimed style for modern homes. Sir Terence Conran described Warehouse Home as “a great new title that freshens up the design market”. Printed bi-annually, it’s delivered directly to the UK’s finest warehouse conversions. The digital edition has been read in over 60 countries. In addition to the magazine and blog, Warehouse Home collaborates with British designers on exclusive design collections and have just launched a new e-shop as well as signing a global book deal with Thames & Hudson.


Ali Clifford blogger speaking at BritMums Live

Ali Clifford is a creative stylist and social media marketing consultant, who in a previous life ran the design studio for a well-known British department store group, and went on to be creative director for one of the founding organic and Fairtrade kidswear brands in the UK. Now with her own consultancy, Ali works predominantly with eco brands, and ethical SMEs, establishing and maintaining a strong, engaging online social presence for them. In her spare time Ali loves getting crafty with her two young boys, upcycling old reclaimed ‘junk’, baking (and eating) and experimenting with Instagram. She blogs at www.KidsChaos.com, www.aGreenerLifeforus.com, and www.FunCraftsKids.com. @incredibusymum


Nigel Camp speaking at #BML16

Nigel Camp is founder of DevilBoy Productions, which specialises in producing film for brands who want a big company experience on an affordable budget. He is also author of the book entitled The Video Effect, which explains how to create quality content with professional advice on production techniques, equipment, storyboarding and content sharing. You can also check out his blog www.thevideoeffect.tv contains cool video tips. When he’s not working you can find him relaxing on a beach or getting ready for his next snowboard trip. Follow Nigel on Twitter at @nigelcamp.


Jess Dante speaking at #BML16Jess Dante blogs at Love and London and is the creator of The Abroad Guide, a travel site for American students planning to study abroad or travel after graduating university. She’s also the woman behind Love and London, a website and You Tube channel that helps its audience travel beautifully with stylish travel guides, travel fashion advice, and more. Jess’s career in social media and content marketing has led her to start a consultancy business as well as to create Socially Jess, a community that helps bloggers and small businesses shine online. Follow her on Twitter at @Jess_inLondon.


Melinda Fargo at #BML16Melinda Fargo is a former senior executive now working with children’s services. She first came to social media attention via her successful, satirical and reflective blog, HerMelness Speaks…Out. This personal blog was born as an antidote to the sudden death of her beloved husband, Bronson, five years ago. It was therefore bereavement that ‘outed’ Melinda’s writing. Regularly featured in the writing and blogging worlds, Melinda was further talent spotted by the UK’s largest regional newspaper, The Eastern Daily Press, where she is now a monthly columnist. Last year, Melinda founded and is Editor-in-Chief of the news and editorial website, Post-40 Bloggers, which features and publicises the work of talented bloggers and writers aged 40+. The 20-strong team of editors are dedicated to creating, finding and sharing the best the post-40 community has to offer.
Nienke Krook the Travel Tester at #BML16Nienke Krook is a former primary school teacher from The Netherlands now living in London. As The Travel Tester she blogs about personal development through travel, matching a range of travel styles with meaningful experiences around the world. From her own addiction with Pinterest, Nienke grew her account to over 500,000+ followers and has turned it into the #1 traffic driver of her blog. She has since managed accounts for a range of travel brands, given workshops and spoke at conferences about the power of this visual platform. At #BML16, she aims to also make your life a bit more Pinteresting.
Judith Lewis deCabbitJudith Lewis is the founder of the deCabbit Consultancy specialising in integrated digital marketing consultancy and execution. She is a specialist integrated online marketer with skills in SEO, PPC, and Social Media Marketing as well as other digital marketing techniques. She has been doing SEO since before it had a name and has worked both in-house and agency-side. She has judged both UK & EU Search Awards, is a founding everywoman Modern Muse and is the coordinator for London Girl Geek Dinners. Having both an in-house and agency background, her clients have included Google, Virgin, NSPCC, Zopa, Slendertone, the Guggenheim, SAP, Amadeus, Blue Cross, & ShareThis. She works from planning through to execution, integrating her digital expertise through research & analysis, design & build through to deployment. Judith writes for The SEO Chicks and Mostly About Chocolate as well as The Huffington Post. She speaks at various conferences around the world and is passionate about teaching and helping businesses large and small (as well as chocolate). Twitter: @JudithLewis @deCabbit

YouTube Kate Rushworth speaking at #BML16Kate Rushworth has spent more than four years at Google working as an audience development strategist on the YouTube platform, advising creators across the UK and Europe on how to grow their audience. Previously, she worked at BBC Worldwide for three years, running six YouTube channels such as Top Gear and BBC Earth. Basically, she’s spent seven years watching an awful lot of YouTube.

Jennie Maizels speaking at BritMums LiveJennie Maizels (Unleash your artist: The power of sketchbooks) is an award-winning illustrator who has published 22 books and sold over a million copies worldwide. She’s known not only for her range of embroidery patches, which are stocked everywhere from Liberty, John Lewis and The Conran Shop, but also for her hugely popular online Sketchbook Club. Jennie’s hugely popular Online Sketchbook Club has become a phenomenon. She believes passionately that people should be drawing for pleasure as much as they are baking, and that absolutely anyone can draw. With Sketchbook Club, Jennie takes away the fear of the blank page and teaches us that it is not just about drawing from life. There is nothing wrong in tracing, copying or being told what to do, we wouldn’t bake a cake without a recipe or play an instrument without music, so why not paint and draw with reference and instructions? It works. It’s fabulous and we’re all addicted. Keeping sketchbooks is officially good for the soul.


maggy woodley


Maggy Woodley is a self confessed social media addict (aren’t we all) who owns a number of blogs, amongst which the best well known is her craft blog RedTedArt.com. You will find her pretty much everywhere as @redtedart – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, G+, YouTube, Pinterest, Stumbleupon, ello, Tumblr …. and so on. How does she do that?! @RedTedArt



Room Moderators

kate davis holmes newKate Davis-Holmes is a freelance writer and a member of the BritMums team. She blogs at kateonthinice.com. After studying Law at Trinity Hall, Cambridge University, Kate spent 20 years promoting and supporting a wide range of charities including Oxfam and Citizens Advice Bureaux. Her roles included media relations and events organisation. She has encouraged many people to participate in volunteering and also Action Learning. Kate lives with her husband and 3 children in Hampshire.@kateonthinice


Kelly InnesKelly Innes is the face behind the silhouette at Domestic Goddesque, part of The Motherhood and contributing editor at BritMums. She is a wife to her beloved DH, mother to two absurdly photogenic daughters, dog-owner, chicken-feeder and country-dweller. She likes baking cakes, drinking cocktails and arguing with the Sat Nav and *may* have an unhealthy fondness for her coffee machine, but don’t hold it against her, will you? @domesticgoddesq



lauren_woodward_photoLauren Woodward is a housewife, mum to two young boys and blogs as the Real Housewife of Suffolk County. She is also 1 of 12 contributors to the Living Arrows photography project. Lauren covers a variety of topics but is particularly passionate about writing an open and honest account about mental health.  She loves sailing on the Norfolk Broads, photography, blue floral dresses, coffee, Ricky Martin, the US series of Impractical Jokers and Tom Hanks. @LaureninSuffolk


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