Big Difference Company presents
Tuesday 11th June 2024

Sponsored by Howes Percival LLP

Supported by Associate Partner Mattioli Woods and Media Partner Crosscut Media

Participants for the Leicester Stand Up Challenge 2024!

Our 9 participants bravely took part in the Stand Up Challenge on Tuesday 11th June at The Y Theatre. On the night the overall winner was Jack Castledine, with 2nd place going to Amy Latimer and 3rd place to Emma Hanson.

You can view and sponsor our participants below; who took on the Leicester Stand Up Challenge 2024 to raise funds to support the continuing work of Big Difference Company charity.

Thank you for your support!

Jack Castledine

Supporter Engagement Executive - University of Leicester

It all started with a colleague receiving an email about the Stand Up Challenge. She thought it might appeal to me and forwarded the email on. The rest, as they say, is history. For many years now, I’ve liked to bring a little levity – be it a joke, a quip or the occasional silliness – to those around me. Goodness knows we’ve needed it sometimes in recent years! This seems like an excellent opportunity to share some levity with a wider audience. Initially I was reluctant to sign up, but having seen some of the videos of others who have taken the plunge, I stood back and said to myself “I reckon you could do that too!”. I guess we’ll see how it goes when June rolls around!

Sponsor Me

Amy Latimer

Centre Manager at St Margaret's Pastures Sports Centre - Leicester City Hockey Club CIC

I was convinced to join the Stand-Up Challenge in the same way I'm convinced to do anything: an appeal to my ego. After being told my name was 'thrown around' in discussions about participants I thought, "I'd best give the people what they want," even though I have zero stage presence and am terrified of performing. Besides that, I see all the hard work the Big Difference staff put in organising LCF every year and the fact that, alongside all of that work, they've taken on the running of a venue which is thriving is so fantastic. I think that they're such a great organisation, so if I can help raise some money for them, overcome my stage fright, and maybe sneak into some official photos along the way, I reckon I can keep my ego intact with only the smallest bit of delusion.

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Emma Hanson FCA

Business Adviser - Edge Business Advisory

My friends (you know who you are…) talked me into it. I’m not sure how they got me to say yes, I thought I was years beyond peer pressure, but apparently not! I think they may have mystical powers. I’m really pleased to take up the challenge for The Big Difference. I love stand up, have never done it myself and am currently 50% terrified and 50% excited at the prospect….That’s a lie, I’m 100% quaking in my boots. What on earth was I thinking????? See you all in June! (Very big gulp!!!!)

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Dr Yasin El Ashrafi BEM

Managing Director - HQ Recording Studio

I’m taking part because I love the Big Difference and want to support them and I like to set myself challenges to get out of my comfort zone. I’ve always been a bit of a clown and I make myself laugh all the time so maybe with a bit of training I can make others laugh and raise some money for a great cause as well.

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Minakshee Patel

Minakshee Patel Consultancy

I got a surprise email from Michael Harris-Wakelam, saying someone had suggested that he recruited me for the Stand-Up Challenge. I can't help but wonder who that someone was! To my amazement, I said yes! Stepping onto the comedy stage is like me trying to tap dance - definitely not my forte. Now that I’ve had time to reflect, I'm absolutely terrified. What if my jokes fall flat as pancakes? It's all for a good cause! We're raising funds for the Big Difference Company, which is doing some wonderful work with the communities in Leicester. So, even if my punchlines flop, at least it's for a good reason.

Sponsor Me

Ian Caldwell

CEO at Menphys

I’ve always loved the Leicester Comedy Festival. It is a unique part of the entertainment calendar in our city, county and region, and does so much to put Leicester on the map. The Big Difference Company have also been a big help to Menphys in staging our own comedy gigs at the Menphys Hub, so, when Mr MHW and the team came calling I could hardly say ‘no’. Its amazing what I will say ‘yes’ to after a couple of beers but there’s no backing out now…in for a penny, in for a pound.

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Matt O' Hara

Wealth Management Consultant - Mattioli Woods plc

I am a big advocate of the Leicester Comedy Festival and the Big Difference charity, so I am excited to be involved in this. Stand up comedy is a real hobby of mine - watching, not doing! I can’t wait though, I will no doubt be petrified by the time it rolls around, the last large group of people I spoke in front of were a bunch of 15 and 16 year olds, so this can’t go any worse… right!?

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Mike Denby

Director of Inward Investment and Place Marketing - Leicester City Council

I’m a northerner working in Leicester and can’t wait to entertain a room full of Midlanders! From a young age, I’ve been told I should be on stage or on the tele, although nowadays I’ve got more of a face for radio! If someone said to me, ‘What will your Stand Up Challenge be like?’ I would say ‘Expect a low budget Chuckle Brother’. See you in June!

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Graham Irons

Partner - Howes Percival LLP

I’m the latest victim from Howes Percival who have had a long history with the Stand Up Challenge. I’ve been with the firm for 18 years and have always tried to bring a sense of humour into everything I do. This will be the ultimate test and I find myself swinging between excitement and terror, but whatever happens I hope to raise money for a great cause!

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