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Innovators and visionaries: creating a home for the future – Gavin Poole, CEO, Here East

About This Episode

Gavin Poole is CEO of Here East, the Olympic Park home to some of the country’s most vibrant innovators, from leading universities to the most exciting and disruptive creative and technology start-ups around. Over the past eight years, Here East has grown under Gavin’s leadership to become home to more than 4,500 entrepreneurs, creatives, visionaries and like-minded locals, all with the vision to deliver on the 2012 Olympic legacy and contribute positive social impact to east London. But Gavin’s journey didn’t start there; a former RAF officer, he tells his story and the life lessons that drive him to create opportunities for others.

Gavin Poole

Gavin is CEO of Here East – the 1.2 million sq ft technology and Innovation campus on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London, and one of the fastest growing business clusters in the UK. Recently, Gavin has been at the forefront of developing the concept of creating London’s first digital games and esports cluster. Prior, Gavin served as an engineering officer in the UK Royal Air Force for over 20 years before leaving following tours as a Wing Commander. Upon leaving military service, he ran the Centre for Social Justice (CSJ) and helped form major policy initiatives including the introduction of the Modern-Day Slavery Act within the UK. Gavin is a board member of Plexal, sits on the Advisory Board of Global Tech Advocates and is a London Technology Ambassador for London & Partners. In addition, he sits on the Advisory Board for London Tech Week.

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Lockdown List

What is a book that has changed your life?

To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee

What are you watching in lockdown?

Hamilton (on repeat!) or West Coast Customs…

What is your lockdown soundtrack?

Amarillo by Morning – George Strait

Where Is The Love? – Black Eyed Peas

Holocene – Bon Iver

Tennessee Whisky – Chris Stapleton

Shine on you Crazy Diamond – Pink Floyd

In one sentence, describe your new normal.


Who is your biggest inspiration and why?

All 12 of the original pioneering astronauts of the 1960s.

What is your best tip for life ?

Don’t look back, don’t go back, don’t get a dog!

(A point vigorously contested by his adorable Welsh Terrier, Pickles – not pictured)

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