Anna Taylor

Lisa is an authentic East Ender of Polish and Irish descent. Lisa cares deeply about the community and making Tower Hamlets safe and inclusive for everyone, having always lived and worked locally. She started her career as a market trader and from an early age was honing her entrepreneurial skills. Lisa went on to support at-risk young people with legal issues and appeals. As a community volunteer, Lisa has raised substantial funds for education and charitable organisations and has strategically supported many more.

Lisa is a fellow of The School of Social Entrepreneurs, graduating in 2013.

She was also recognised in 2021 by being a winner of the Social Innovation Prize. This is is awarded annually by Trinity Hall College Cambridge, and the Cambridge Centre for Social Innovation based at  University of Cambridge Judge Business School. It is given to a few chosen individuals for their achievement to date and for their ambitious plans for the future.

As the founder of Social Ark, Lisa helps grassroots social entrepreneurs, whom she describes as ‘hidden gems’, to use their lived experience to develop social businesses and to create a better life for themselves and the community around them.

I do this in different ways including –

– Teaching a year long ‘How to Grow Cut Flowers’ Course on the Flower Farm here in Audley End, Saffron Walden.
– Consulting with florists and flower farmers to develop and grow their experience and skills to sell locally grown cut flowers.
– Coach small business and creatives in photography, positioning, products and sales.
– Write a monthly column for Cambridge Edition and ‘3 top tips’ for growing in a weekly blog.
– Collaborating to draw attention to connection and purpose through the natural world in both public facing talks and workshops or event production. Partners include, University of Cambridge Kettles Yard, Fitzwilliam Museum, Judge Business School, National Trust Anglesey Abbey & Wimpole Hall, Capel Manor College.
– Design and maintenance consultancy for private and public spaces. Commercial clients include Novi and British Antarctic Survey.

What about the flowers?
Flowers from the farm are sold in ‘Ready to Arrange’ Buckets and ‘Kit and Caboodle’ Wedding Packages, delivered or collected from the studio.

And in the beautiful space of the studio and gardens, I host classes and events. They are also available to hire for photo shoots, private events and work meetings.

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