Well filming for Battlefront began on Thursday... Rosie and Tom from the team arrived at 12.00noon and we got cracking straight away! We did an interview in my room and then the "cribs" tour of the house, going into each room and looking at funny things, whether it be related to Battlefront or me in general, so that was quite amusing! At this point my folks and I didn't know if we were going to make it down to London as it was saying on the news not to travel as the snow was really bad there! Thankfully we heard the roads were clear and Rosie and Tom left and so did we about half an hour later! I was a bit apprehensive at this point, as I have not travelled this far since being diagnosed with Kidney Failure 4 years ago, as I was never really well enough to travel and often got travel sick!
So we set off and the journey was fine, we stopped at some services along the way and had a bite to eat and eventually arrived at the travelodge around 8.30!
The next morning we got up early ready for a busy day of meetings and filming, the journey into London was a bit of a nightmare, it took us over 2 hours as there were delays due to signals failing! But we arrived in Camden town and Mum and Dad left me with Rosie and Tom, ready to meet my mentor Oli Barrett in a cafe up the road!
I was nervous at first, I didn't know what to expect! I was soon put at ease, he is a lovely chap, really motivating and inspiring! We talked about the aims of the Gift of Life campaign which are;
1. To raise awareness of Organ donation and educate people on the importance of it, clearing up misconceptions along the way.
2. Get as many people to sign up to the Organ Donor Register as possible
We devised an action plan and certain things to focus on including creating a viral game to encourage more people to sign up as well as national sign up day which will hopefully involve some celebrities! Oli asked me ideally who I would like and I said Take That in particular Gary Barlow, visualise it and it will happen Oli said so fingers crossed hey! I can wish anyway....
I don't remember how long we were talking for, it went by in a flash and I was so engrossed in the conversation that I completely forgot to take notes!!! I left the meeting feeling like I needed to get cracking and go and do a million and one things! Oli was really supportive, passionate and motivating, it's great to have him on board and I'm looking forward to our next meeting and working together to get more people on the Organ Donor Register!
So after that we left the cafe and headed to Waterloo to meet the fabulous and also insiprational Miss Emily T! I haven't seen her since my transplant, so we had a lot to catch up on! Emily did (and is continuing to do) a great job in helping me with my campaign, it's great to have her on board as I know she is as passionate about this subject as I am! There were lots of giggles and chatting, as well as a massive chip butty (you can see evidence of this on my Battlefront page when the video goes up)! Filming with Emily was great, I think the more people hear personal stories about people receiving transplants and waiting on the list the better, they are more likely to do something about it!
Mum and Dad then came to meet us at the cafe and spent the afternoon with Emily while I went off with Rosie and Tom to meet up with Oli again, he wanted me to meet with someone that afternoon! I wasn't being told much about who it was or what was happening, I was intrigued! We went to a place called 1 Alfred Place, a posh members only club (I felt a right scruff bag when I went in)! So I met up with Oli there who then took me over to another set of offices (the home of smarta.com) where I met some other really helpful people including Shaa Wasmund...
Oli and I quizzed her on the best way to get the message about my campaign out there... she said the two main things were to get a celebrity on board and to get it into the media! We didn't film with Shaa but she said she would be willing to be filmed in the future if we needed too, which is great! But Shaa wasn't the person Oli had planned a meeting with, that just happened by chance. The person he wanted me to meet was the founder of Bebo Michael Birch!
What a great person to ask about social networking sites and how to get my campaign out there! It was fascinating chatting to him, he was really down to earth and helpful. He liked the idea of a viral game and suggested ways in which we could promote the campaign and Organ donation! Oli finished the meeting asking Michael if he knew Gary Barlow, my eyes lit up when he said yes, turns out it wasn't THE Gary Barlow... shame!
So that topped off a really busy and inspiring day! I can't wait to get cracking on with the campaign and organising the sign up day!
I met up with Mum, Dad and Emily at Waterloo (kindly escorted by Tom) we sat down for a quick cuppa and a chat but I felt like I could just drop off to sleep there and then. So about half an hour later we said goodbye to Emily and got on the train back to the travelodge... where I spotted a funny sign which said... "Peak hours may necessitate that you let other people sit on your lap"Thankfully no one did, well I wouldn't have said no to Gary Barlow!
We got back and had an early night ready for the journey home yesterday! We were originally going to back into London but I couldn't face the journey back in. Hopefully it won't be too long before I am back down again and can do all the touristy things! Instead we stopped off at Windsor for a bite to eat and a walk round the shops... I'll leave you with a few pics...
What a tiring but fantastic trip, I would never have been able to do this before my transplant... I must have walked miles! I remember the last time I went to London I was one of those people standing on the right of the escalators, this time I was on the left walking up the escalators! Little everyday things like that, that people take for granted... thanks to my donor and their family I can now do those things!