TEDx Totnes


TEDxTotnes Tickets SOLD OUT in under 10 hours!

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Well…we knew demand was high but had no idea that that demand would present itself in under 10 hours.

Watching the orders fly in this morning was amazing. Knowing that our speakers are going to be speaking to a full auditorium is a wonderful feeling. They deserve it, they are dedicating a huge amount of time and energy to their talks and we expect great things on the 9th October.

CONGRATULATIONS to those of you who successfully bought a ticket and to those of you who didn’t we have a waiting list so please do <a href=”http://www.tedxtotnes.com/tickets”>sign-up for it.

We look forward to meeting you on 9th October 2015.

TEDxTotnes: Tickets on sale this week! Sign-up!

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Long awaited. Much anticipated. Hugely excited!

Tickets will go on sale this week so sign-up for updates. Email us with any questions and to top it all off, I’ll announce our people’s choice winner tomorrow.

Watch this space….

#inourhands #TEDx #TEDxTotnes #Totnes

David Kelley on Creative Confidence

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As a “creative” professional I am very interested in the definition of the word and how it is attached to certain people but by no means to all who deserve it.

As a father I am amazed by the creativity in my children’s minds. They constantly spool thoughts so creative that as grown-ups we have been gently conditioned to suppress.

In this eleven and a half minute talk David Kelley reminds us of the power and purpose of the human brain and suggests how we can nurture our creative selves.

What medicine can learn from art: Lucie Wilk @TEDxAylesbury

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One of the TEDxTotnes team pointed me in the direction of an intuitive and compelling TEDx talk.

Lucie Wilk spoke at TEDxAylesbury on ‘What Medicine can Learn from Art’.

Lucie is both Doctor and Author and her experiences have led her to the realisation that in the world of healthcare a persons sense of self and agency are often removed and replaced with scientific facts.

Lucie poses the question: “are scientific truths the whole truth?”

Her talk resonated with me and aroused in me a desire to take responsibility for my own self, something that I naturally believe and do but the authority and weight of the medical profession often removes this from individuals. I can’t say whether I would retain my sense of self were I to be placed in a situation where I felt powerless due to a lack of understanding or knowledge, could you?

Although Lucie called on the audience (and me via YouTube) to “take action and effect change in our life”, would I, or you be able to do this if I didn’t understand the situation?

At TEDxTotnes Kath Maguire will be taking us to the next stage. Hear what she is doing to answer the question above.

I am thrilled to have heard Lucie’s talk and if you are planning to come to TEDxTotnes. It’s insightful and thought-provoking. An excellent TEDx talk.

Don’t forget, tickets for TEDxTotnes will go on sale soon so please sign-up for details if you want to continue the conversation and continue to hear inspiring ideas, worth sharing!


Ryan Doyle on TEDxTotnes

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Tell us a bit about who you are.

Ryan Doyle

Ryan Doyle

My name is Ryan Doyle, I am a police Inspector with Devon and Cornwall and the Chair and Founder of Local Heroes. I’m 32 years old and have been a police officer for 12 years; joining Thames Valley in 2003 and then moving to Devon in 2007. I set up Local Heroes in 2013 because I care deeply about preventing bullying, raising awareness of Hate Crime and empowering young people to lead social change.

What is your ‘idea worth spreading’?

I will be talking about how the unique approach of Local Heroes has made a hugely positive impact on schools and young people.

What message do you want to share at TEDxTotnes?

I want people to realise that they have a responsibility to protect Young People and the passion, drive and brilliant ideas that they have.

What does the theme of this year’s TEDxTotnes, “It’s in our hands” mean to you?

Through my day job as partnership lead for the police in Devon and the work I do with Local Heroes it is clear that the skills, knowledge and commitment required to lead and deliver social change exist within our communities. What we need is people to realise they have the ability to make things better; be that for themselves, their friends and family or their whole community. The challenge for those in positions of authority is to understand that and work with people to make this happen. For me, “It’s in our hands” is a call to action. For the policy setters, budget holders and decision makers to realise the ability in our communities, and individuals and communities to be inspired.

What impact do you hope TEDxTotnes will have on the community, and internationally?

I want them to be inspired. I want it to be a call to action. I want people to go and find out about Local Heroes and the other great organisations and projects that will be spoken about, and find out how they can help us make a difference.

Which TED or TEDx talk has had the greatest impact on you?

Tom Wujec (Marshmallow Challenge) and Adora Svitik (What adults can learn from kids). Both talk about how powerful young people’s minds and abilities are: “Kids are not hampered by reasons not to do something” (TW), “In order for anything to be a reality, you have to dream it first” (AS). They remind me of one of my favourite film quotes (from V for Vendetta): “Beneath this mask there is more than flesh. Beneath this mask is an idea, and ideas are bullet proof”.

Caspar Walsh Q&A

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Tell us a bit about who you are.

I’m a professional writer and workshop facilitator.

I had a pretty shaky start to life. This included drugs, alcohol and prison. Staring a long sentence in the face I had a choice: stop what I was doing and take an scary, unknown road or carry on with what I knew and head down the same fatal path my father took. The prospect of four walls and a cell door gave me a hand with the decision.


Caspar Walsh

My rehabilitation began in my early twenties. The key tools I found to stay off of drugs and out of prison was a community of like-minded souls, writing, more specifically the power of myth, and wild nature. I have always sought nature connection for reflection, solace and escape. It forms part of my earliest memories. I was mesmerised by myth and legends as a child. Jason and the Argonauts, Star Wars, Treasure Island, Lord of the Rings, these stories inspired me and helped healed a part of me that the harshness of daily life almost destroyed. They were a guiding light in a dark time.

My early years in crime, prison and my subsequent rehabilitation, slowly, over time, drew organisations (legal ones) to commission me, publish me, broadcast my work and pay me a living. I eventually went on to found the charity, Write to Freedom using the trinity of myth, community and wild nature to help others who have been in a similar position to me.

Today, my professional and personal life are interwoven, in a healthy way, to allow me to live the life I have dreamt of since I was a kid. I live on Dartmoor with my partner, I write, walk, sit, surf, spear fish and thank god I didn’t take my life when I wanted to. What I have today is nothing short of a miracle.

What message do you want to share at TEDxTotnes?

I’ll tell you on the 9th October….

What does the theme of this year’s TEDxTotnes, “It’s in our hands” mean to you?

The buck stops here. What I do matters. I have an impact on the world whether I believe it or not. We are indeed the leaders we have been waiting for. We are all leaders in our own unique way. We decide what we do and when. We have the power to change the world, one step at a time, together.

What impact do you hope TEDxTotnes will have on the community, and internationally?

To reach beyond the converted Ted Talk advocate. To inspire individuals across class, ethnic, religious, political and social spectrums to make possible the changes they may feel powerless to step into.

Which TED or TEDx talk has had the greatest impact on you?

Tricky. That’s like asking me what’s my favourite movie, band or place to go for a walk! I’d say all the Ted Talks I’ve reviewed for Positive News. Sir Ken Robinson as well as Plan B on Dangerous Education rate highly.

The #inspiration continues: Adora Svitak’s TED talk

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Whilst talking to one of our speakers tonight, he pointed me in the direction of a TED talk given by Adora Svitak in 2010.

I watched it because it’s relevant to his talk and his message, which is inspiring in itself and as with all TED and TEDx talks I found myself re-evaluating my approach to life. A talk, available free online, thanks to TED has once again managed to make me want to take action.

This is what continues to amaze me about TEDx and when I talk to our speakers I know they all have the same mission in mind. They are here to inspire action. Make a difference, share ideas for a better world or a different concept or a change. TED and TEDx are helping people make calls to action, daily and in a unique way.

I urge you to watch Adora Svitak’s TED Talk watch it and think: Do you think Adults should learn from Kids? Our future leaders? Can we trust kids?

I think, and I’m certain I’m not alone, that yes, we should.

TEDxExeter: Taking the Long View

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Did you know that TEDxExeter sold out in under 2 hours this year?

Is it a surprise given their past speakers have included the likes of Karima Bennoune who’s talk has received over 1.2m YouTube views? Harry Baker who’s slam poetry performance was also featured on TED.com? And the Scilla Elworthy who’s talk is featured on 3 TED playlists?

The curator of TEDxExeter was the first person we met when looking for motivation and inspiration after we were given our license and she has been a support and mentor ever since. We will be helping her on the day and are honoured to be part of a team that is so efficient and dedicated to TEDx.

In 2015 TEDxExeter will look at Taking the Long View and we can’t wait. We’ll be there listening intently and hoping to take in every last snippet of information.

Good luck TEDxExeter team, we can’t wait for Friday!

The TEDxTotnes Team

Our Future: Is it all a Game?

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I went to TEDxBrighton last year and one of the talks that I still think about and cite regularly was a talk given by Megan Leckie from blockbuilders. Megan alongside Joe founded blockbuilders so that, in her words people could make a difference ‘because they can’, kids can ‘create some kind of change’.

But, how?

Well, blockbuilders use games to engage and reach kids so that they can make a difference. The example she uses in her talk is the Pheonix Estate in Lewes. They invited a group of kids in to help them design, using minecraft a town that they would want to live in. Essentially what they were doing was town planning using a game!

As Megan quite rightly points out ‘kids are experts in this (minecraft)’. They are experts in the digital world and using this as a tool to give them an opportunity is, in my opinion nothing short of brilliant.

Since this talk I have been thinking about games as an avenue to create a brighter future. I find it slightly ironic that blockbuilders had to translate the digital creations into 3D printed format to be able to communicate with the adults, ironic and amusing but also worrying.

If our children are our future and our children are engaged digitally but having to translate to their parents shouldn’t we be gaming too?

I then wondered about how adults approach games and how we could open up our minds and our potential through games. I came across another TEDx talk where Shimpei Takahashi talks about how by playing games we can come up with new ideas.

I like this idea and I believe in it and I feel there is a lot more exploring to do and whilst I remain convinced by the idea that games play a vital role in our future I remain more convinced that our kids expertise in the digital world will drive our future more.

So whether it’s digital gaming or digital living our future is certainly headed in a virtual direction.

I strongly recommend Megan’s talk if you haven’t seen it, she delivers it well and I didn’t miss a word of it either onsite or when I watched it back.