Why Hop Forward Training

Hop Forward Training is the training and consultancy wing of Hopper Events Ltd (trading as Hopper) which is an experienced events management and delivery agency based in Sheffield. Mark Norman and Dave Strafford (together with fellow directors Andy Harrison and Olly Bellamy) are all experienced event professionals in their own right who have worked together since 2002. Hopper was officially formed on 7th April 2015. 

We have an extensive range of experience of delivering cultural events, family events and strategic events; whether it be music, comedy, theatre, spoken word or performance, or experiential marketing or charity events. Individually, our venue management experience includes events in student unions, in theatres and in live music venues and we have been involved in promoting, marketing, delivering and operating cultural events since the late nineties. 

As Hopper, our focus has been the creation and delivery of outdoor family events, for creative clients, such as BBC Learning, Hull 2017, C Beebies, Radio 1, The Gruffalo Experience, Nivea, Campo Viejo, Dollar Shave Club and Disney On Ice. We understand the creative event design process and are experienced at delivering safe and successful events for clients.

We have experience of guiding partners through the event management process, offering expertise and advice throughout, as to what is practicable and what is deliverable, given budgetary and other constraints. Our key skills centre around our collective positive can-do attitude, combined with exceptional problem-solving and communication skills. 

Our objective is to deliver safe, sustainable and successful events – and we are very proud of our Safety record at events. We take Safety very seriously, and have developed our policies in line with some particularly stringent organisations. The high profile nature of the BBC and C-Beebies, and clients such as Meadowhall or Bluewater, means that any Health & Safety incident would be front page news, and as such we have always worked diligently to ensure our events are as risk-averse as they can be.

Both Mark & Dave are Technical Members of IOSH, having achieved the NEBOSH Health & Safety certificate. We have the competence to deliver safe events, as proven by our flawless track record, our expert skills and knowledge, and indeed our industry recognised qualifications. Mark & Dave are also both qualified teachers, lecturing in Events Management at Sheffield Hallam University; they are fellows of the Higher Education Academy, teaching strategic management, outdoor festivals and events, event law and risk management and event business management to under-graduate and post-graduate students at Sheffield Business School. 

Andy is a Trustee of Leeds Beckett Students Union and Chair of the organisation’s HR, Finance and Audit Committee; providing oversight and guidance to the charity.