Thom, 49, was one of founders of Restaurant magazine and the 50 Best Restaurants in the World awards, and latterly built a world class portfolio of hospitality events as owner of the NRB exhibition. As founder of Landing Light he is a consultant, commentator and community builder in food and drink and art and culture in the North of England. He is also Exec Chairman of Easel Projects, which encompasses Manchester Art Fair and related cultural platforms.
Thom is currently a Trustee The Tim Bacon Foundation, an early-stage investor and advisor in start-ups including Anthem Projects, Pizza Luxe and Padoq, and sits on the boards of Marketing Manchester’s TIER Group and Manchester’s Business Sounding Board. Via Landing Light Thom advises national hospitality operators on their Northern expansion plans, as well as public institutions, major property developers and city councils on food and drink strategy, cultural engagement and commissions, and placemaking.
In addition, Thom judges awards including the National Restaurant Awards, the Top 50 Gastropubs, and the Manchester Food and Drink Festival, and has reviewed for respected guides including Mr and Mrs Smith. He is also a regular speaker, panellist and chair at industry conferences, and has contributed on Northern gastronomy for titles ranging from Caterer and Restaurant magazine to The New Yorker, The Guardian, The Telegraph and Le Monde, as well as appearing on BBC 1 Breakfast news and BBC Radio 4.