Good morning, good morning, good morning and welcome to Alegre Media’s Gossip Station! We hope that you all had a fabulous weekend and were able to enjoy the glorious sunshine! For all of those that were pulling shapes in Victoria Park at the Lovebox festival couldn’t have asked for better weather!! London – you were looking bloomin beautiful!
This week on Gossip Station we are joined by some-one who is always in the know of what’s going on for kids in West London! Please join us in welcoming the lovely Victoria Evans from City Kids magazine! For those of you that aren’t familiar with City Kids Mag – it’s a listings directory for kids 0-18 years as well as a ‘what’s on calendar’ for individuals living in West London! So, let’s get to it…
Victoria! Thank you so much for joining us on Gossip Station! It’s fab to see you as always! Let’s start off by you telling us about yourself and your background…
Hello everyone! I’m a married mum of two, living in west London. Before City Kids, I worked for many years in TV production. I started with work experience at GMTV, and over the years gained experience producing a radio breakfast show, presenting travel and sports reports. I then went on to report and eventually become a producer for a very well-known sports broadcaster. I was a sporty kid so it was the dream career. I consider myself very lucky to have worked with some amazingly imaginative, creative and brilliant people, as well as making some friends for life.
That’s so nice that you were able to make your dream become a reality! Why did you decide to leave TV to set up your own magazine?
Having worked shifts, nights, long hours and poured my heart and soul into my work, I reached a point where I wanted to do something for me and my family. I wasn’t sure that I could be 100% committed to my job any more, and that’s a problem for me. I’m an all or nothing kind of gal so just going through the motions isn’t an option for me. One day, I literally googled ideas to find out how I could work from home, around the kids and loads of magazine franchises turned up. The penny dropped that there wasn’t a publication in my area that served my needs. I figured that there must be others who felt the same way, so I began this crazy journey in publishing. Naivety is a great thing! I had zero experience in magazine production – but City Kids Magazine has been so well received, it’s definitely been worth it.
We love that gumption about you and think that the concept of City Kids is fab! Are you happy that you made the change?
Totally! Working for yourself brings a different type of stress to your life, but I’m not sure whether I could work for anyone else again. Selling ad space is the part of the job I find hardest, but possibly the most essential! I’m not sure the work–life balance is completely sorted, but I have met so many wonderful, supportive people (like you!) who love what I’m doing, and I have learned so much about business and of course publishing. Taking delivery of the first issue was amazing and I still get the biggest kicks walking into a café and seeing someone reading City Kids.
Support is essential isn’t it?! You’re so right there is no better feeling – woah go girl! Tell us about City Kids…
City Kids Magazine is about providing families with something that is truly local and relevant. All the classes we list are within a walk, or short bus/car journey, while we also realise that weekends provide an opportunity to travel further afield. That’s where our ‘What’s On’ calendar comes in. We choose events in London that are new or different to remind everyone what a great city we live in.
Do you have any contributors?
Yes! We have great editorial provided by LBC presenter and local mum Beverley Turner, plus recipe inspiration from another local and best-selling cookery writer, Jo Pratt. There’s also bang on trend fashion provided by super talented Roxzann Weston, feature articles, interviews and schools info.
The lovely Rox - she is a fab stylist! What extra is there to the mag?
We recently launched our Boutique pages as a way of showcasing small businesses who wouldn’t normally be able to reach our kind of readership. It’s been very popular with readers and the brands have been happy too. We’re constantly looking at our content and listening to our readers to make sure we’re hitting the mark. City Kids is also slightly smaller than A4 and printed on lovely touchy-feely uncoated paper which readers love and helps us stand out from the crowd. We wanted to make an entrance into the regional publishing market, and I think we have! The magazine is also available online and I can see we’re popular with readers all over the country!
It’s got everything busy families need in a back to back cover! Why the name City Kids?
Names are always hard (it took us over a week to name our daughter!) but City Kids seemed to work. One day you might find sister magazines in Brighton, Manchester or St Albans. It just works.
What this space then hey? You’ve mentioned relaunching the website? When are you hoping to launch it?
It’s coming in September and will give us more editorial and revenue opportunities and the chance to provide news as and when it happens.
Exciting times ahead then hey? Is there anything else coming up for City Kids? Can you reveal any secrets?
Oooh, well. I’m an open book so probably no secrets. We just want to keep improving and get bigger and better.
Have you got any ideas of expanding?
Expansion will be the key for City Kids. I’d like there to be several publications across London, always making sure they’re celebrating each areas unique attributes and providing the information that parents want.
That would be wicked if you could do that! We are behind the concept ALL the way! Which publication do you admire?
Looking at the market we’re in, I love Smallish for its production values and journalism, and some might be surprised when I also mention Angels & Urchins. It might not be for everyone, but two mums had a dream a few years ago, and started a local magazine which is now available across London. I admire what they have done and can only hope City Kids can be as successful. I also love Stylist and admire that it is put together weekly. God knows how they’re all still sane. Are they?!
Haha we should all share secrets! For someone who has never read City Kids - why should they pick up a copy?
If you’re ever at a loss for what to do with the kids, it will give you a unique insight into what’s going on in West London, and across the rest of the capital. It’s cool, fun and interesting and everyone who picks it up seems to love it.
If that won’t sell it then who knows what will?! Victoria – thank you so much for joining us on Gossip Station! It has been fab having you and again, we think that your concept rocks! All we can say is, onwards and upwards!
Check out City Kids Magazine online by visiting the official website at: