The Success Show Case Conference held at Cheltenham , outside London over the weekend was an oppurtunity for a refreshing weekend break in a relaxing atmosphere and in very good company.
The 2 hours drive from London to the venue with my friend was a fun-filled time; with lots of talks and laughter, all the way.
Rolling green fields, dotted with early spring flowers, ponds, lakes and farmsteads made the beautiful English country side a delightful sight.
The Conference was well attended by about two thousand delegates from all over the U.K. It was a most rewarding experience. A time to renew friendships and make new acquaintances.
It was indeed an Achievers' Weekend. All the seven speakers were men and women who had excelled in their various fields; with remarkable accounts of how they got to their present positions after surmounting degrees of challenges in life.
For me two points stood out:
The wonderful life account given by best-selling author and
Special Guest Speaker, Richard McCann (www.richardmccann.co.uk).
He spoke for over 1 hour. His speech was spiced with lots of humour and photo slides ; causing roars of laughter. But there were very few dried eyes at the end of his speech. It was a truly gripping narrative.
I have heard of and seen a lot of battered lives and heard loads of amazing life stories. Before Saturday,I thought I had heard and seen it all.It was quite an experience to listen somebody who had gone through major upheavals in life from infancy to adulthood like Richard did; yet is alive to talk about it and has achieved remarkable success out of it all.
His young and innocent life was shaken to the core at the age of 5 when his mother,Wilma McCann , became the first victim of
Peter Sutcliffe,the "Yorkshire Ripper"; the convicted serial murderer now serving a life sentence.
At that tender age, one morning, Richard and his sisters received the harrowing news that their mother had been attacked and murdered as she walked home the previous evening.
She had been stabbed 14 times and strangled !
After that, he and his young siblings lived with their father and in care.
Richard was a well known face to Social Services.
He went through it all; pain, shame, abuse,fear, bewilderment,poverty,lack of formal education,deprivations,drugs,prison,and prejudice(for having red hair!).
Yet he has survived it all.
Today, at 36, Richard is a valued supporter of the Samaritans, of S.A.M.M.(Support After Murder& Manslaughter)and he works with the Youth Offending Service.
He has been able to rise above crippling challenges to become a well sought-after public speaker and best-selling author.
He has been to No. 10 Downing Street as a Guest of the Prime Minister.
After the Conference,he was mobbed by delegates at the foyer as he signed copies of his best-selling book ,"Just A Boy - The True Story of a Stolen Childhood"; which I believe is a must-read for all.
Richard McCann is living proof that nobody should hold on to any excuse for being a failure in life. No one should accept and buckle under the knocks and blows which we all receive, at least once, from cradle to grave.
Thank God for such an uplifting testimony.
He who has kept Richard McCann through it all , has a reason and purpose for this remarkable life. May Richard and his family continue to receive a revelation of him and of his immense Love. Amen
Finally, in his summary and closing speech ,Bob Parker said :
" Every life is designed to be successful; but,somehow, along the way,people are programmed for mediocrity and failure".
Very true . The difference between those who make it in life and those who don't make it is the ability and willingness to shake oneself from the dust , rise up and go!
Next Showcase Date will be in March at the Alexandra Palace , London .
Watch this space .