The Hull Bloggers collective has a lot planned for the remainder of 2016, as they aim to scream from the rooftops (or rather their laptops) about what the city has to offer.
The group started out in 2013 with humble beginnings down Newland Avenue. Charley Ivill, then a student at the university, organised a few local bloggers to collaborate, network and just have a general chinwag. Since then, there have been many successful networking events at some of the city’s best venues, including Fudge, Al Porto, Furley and Co, and more recently Liquid Jade. The collective has built up a following of over 2,000 across their social media accounts, complemented by a newsletter that goes out to over 50 local bloggers each month, keeping them in the loop as to what’s going on in the blogging world and around Hull.
Alex Redfearn, one of the organisers of the previous events, said: “The Hull Bloggers are not simply local writers to me, they are now my close friends. Every event has been a huge success and our shared hard work has put us on the cultural map. I can't wait to see what the future holds for us all.”
Hull Bloggers meet-ups have proved extremely successful, with 2015's #HBAlPorto event trending on the UK Twittersphere. Organised by volunteers, the aim is to encourage bloggers to come face to face with likeminded people, learn new things and discover brands. In the past, companies such as Lush, Weleda, Primula and many more have attended to chat with members of the collective about their products and services.
Whilst the name suggests that the bloggers are based in Hull, this is not necessarily the case. Many came to the city when they were students and have since moved away, regularly returning for a cuppa and cake with their fellow members. There are also several who have relocated to the area for work or study, to be welcomed with open arms into the group.
“The great thing about Hull Bloggers is how inclusive it is,” says sobananapenguin’s Courtney Farrow, who is also an organiser. “We have bloggers of all ages that write about beauty and fashion, food, jewellery and lifestyle, but we’re always on the lookout for even more variety. I’m not even originally from Hull, yet have always felt included in the group.”
On top of this, a monthly blogger workshop has been launched, inviting inquisitive minds to discuss the tricks of their trade. The idea was a huge success at the recent gathering, with most attendees feeling that they left having learnt something new about photography, blogging and social media.
A daughter project, Hull Foodie, has also launched this September. Local style and food blogger, Jenny Barrett, came up with the idea to celebrate Hull’s fantastic eateries and restaurants in the run-up to and throughout Hull’s City of Culture celebrations.
“With Hull 2017 fast approaching and the city having lots of bars, cafes and restaurants embedded into its culture, it seemed natural to find some way to highlight this for future visitors,” enthused Jenny. “Hull Foodie allows locals to celebrate and support local business, which helps keep our culture and community spirit alive.”
Whether you’re a local blogger or not, be sure to check out Hull Bloggers on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to follow their progress. There's always something going on and you may even meet your future BFF as a result.