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Here East was founded on a vision to unite innovators, leaders, and the local community. The aspiration was to create a collaborative space that would not only attract the best and brightest minds, but would nurture and benefit the surrounding community - providing a platform where ideas, discussion and debate could flourish. 

Embodying this commitment, we were delighted to host a live broadcast of BBC Radio 4’s Any Questions? programme on Friday 17th of November 2023.

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Broadcast every Friday from various locations around the UK, the show is one of the BBC’s flagship political programmes, featuring a panel of influential political and media figures who answer a series of questions asked by members of the audience. Presented by Alex Forsyth, the event is one of the longest-running political panel shows in the world, encouraging thought-provoking debate around topical subjects and pressing issues.

During the broadcast on our campus, we were thrilled to witness a lively exchange of ideas between panellists Shevaun Haviland - Director General of the British Chambers of Commerce, Baroness Angela Smith - Shadow Leader of the House of Lords, Enver Solomon - Chief Executive of the Refugee Council, and Theresa Villiers - MP of the Conservative Party.

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Our audience of Hackney and Here East residents challenged the panellists with concerns and questions ranging from global matters to issues concerning the local community. 

It was brilliant to hear the final discussion centre around London’s Olympic legacy, touching on the economic growth and collaborative spirit fostered by the 2012 Games. 

“Look at this audience tonight, all the people from a range of different backgrounds. I think that the Olympic legacy that lives on in East London is that communities of all backgrounds can live in harmony, can all make incredible contributions, and can make this country richer.” Enver Solomon

“[There were] huge economic improvements in the area. Infrastructure built in 2012 has had a massive multiplier effect in terms of the local economy and local jobs, and we’re still seeing its legacy today.” Shevaun Haviland

Celebrating the collaboration and community we have fostered at Here East, the event was a testament to our power as a convening body, gathering leaders along with our local community to engage in the issues and questions facing us today.

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