Founder, Monkhouse Food and Drink

Clare Downes

A career spanning food, drink and people. Clare Downes has run her brand communications agency – www.monkhousefoodanddrink.co.uk since 2001. Monkhouse works with food and drink businesses of all shapes and sizes, supporting them in the communication of their brand to trade and consumer and helping them through challenges such as start-up, growth, acquisition, merger. Prior to setting up her own agency, Clare had roles in business development/ account management with Unilever (Bird’s Eye Walls). Following this, Diet Coke was her key client, in a sales promotion agency in London. Clare worked in business development/ account management, with the then independently owned drinks brand, Merrydown - and was brand marketing manager at independently owned high-end restaurant group, Groupe Chez Gerard. Her childhood was based all around cheese; her family are dairy farmers and produce Appleby’s Cheshire. Clare is an accredited executive business coach. This takes her into businesses across multiple sectors, where she works closely with individuals and senior leadership teams.  Clare also supports entrepreneurs as they launch and grow their businesses. Her focus is on people understanding themselves, others in their team and the purpose of the business that they are part of - to achieve the best individual and collective results, www.circlecommunication.co.uk  .