About me, Annie Stirk, and how the Time of Your Life came to be!

Big skies, empty beach-time to chill.
Spring Time on The Farm – Cannon Hall Farm

People had been telling me for years that I should retire but I thoroughly enjoyed my job, writing cookbooks and running my own PR business. I was having The Time of My Life and I didn’t want it to stop. So, when I did decided to retire in 2017, I needed to find new ways to find a sense of fulfilment and purpose.

Throughout my 35 year career in broadcasting and PR I was fortunate to work with some of the biggest names in the food media industry. You’ll know the saying, “choose a job you love, and you’ll never have to work a day in your life” and it’s true, I’d had a ball – well most of the time!

Tim Bilton, Gloria Hunniford and Annie Stirk
Tim Bilton, Gloria Hunniford & me

Initially I was a lecturer in Food and Nutrition until I got a lucky break from a TV Producer who, during one phone call changed my whole career. From then I embarked on an exciting adventure in the world of television food. This took me from working as a food stylist on the flagship daytime show ‘This Morning’ to working as Home Economist/Food Stylist on countless series’ in studios and locations all over the country.

I travelled extensively filming in the UK. This included everything from a helicopter trip offshore to film ‘Rhodes around Britain’ with Gary Rhodes on an oil rig, to travelling around East Anglia with Brian Turner to film dozens of programs featuring local produce.

On location with Ainsley Harriott
On location with Ainsley Harriott, “back in the day”.

I also spent time in front of the camera as a presenter on ‘Open House’ with the fabulous Gloria Hunniford and Channel 4’s ‘You Are What You Eat’, and then later on home soil as a presenter on several food series’ with Yorkshire Television.

When I decided I no longer wanted to be getting up at the crack of dawn to travel hundreds of miles to be on location with a boot full of pots, pans and food, it was time for a rethink.

I soon discovered a way I could combine my love of food and media through PR and went on to setup and run Absolutely Food, a bespoke agency specialising in supporting food, drink and hospitality businesses.

Blast from the past. My first-and last cook book. Still very proud.

I feel very lucky to have had a career that was not only a passion but a hobby. I have to admit that retirement was not a natural state for me; it was something that I had privately dreaded as opposed to fully embracing. So I needed a plan and project.

I was looking for something that would be far removed from my previous business world and that would be interesting and fun. I wanted it to combine spending time with my husband Ken, grown up kids, grandchildren and friends.

Sam, our Fox Red Lab is loving all the extra walks and attention.

After many years devising stunts and creative initiatives for clients I found my mind still buzzing and during a walk with our dog, I came up with the idea of The Time of Your Life, for this, the new time of my life.

Having the Time of Your Life?

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