A Cup of Tea with…Lorrie Dannecker

Headline Date 01-05-2018

A cup of tea with… where we sit down and chat with those who make Victoria what it is. People with a passion for Victoria, people who live here, work here, know the area, its history and its future better than anyone else.

This month, we visited Lorrie Dannecker, Group Services Director at Telegraph Media Group, a broadsheet newspaper and digital media company providing up to date news online and in print to the UK and beyond.

How long have you worked in Victoria?

We moved here 12 years ago. We used to be in Canary Wharf and I was asked to project manage the move, which was very challenging. We completed it in nine months, including the fit out. It was like trying to complete an intricate puzzle, but I love doing that kind of thing.

What was the biggest change here you’ve experienced since then?

The new buildings and construction works have changed the area dramatically. It’s also a lot cleaner than it used to be. There are plenty of restaurants here too, and there’s so much more to do socially, it feels like a different place. When we first moved here, Cardinal Place felt really far away and difficult to get to, but now everything’s improved dramatically.

What’s your favourite spot in Victoria?

That would have to be Nova and its restaurants. There are so many wonderful restaurants and food choices at Nova. I love it, and can’t resist going there every day.

If you could change one thing in Victoria, what would it be?

If I could change one thing, I would work to solve the homeless problem. I’d like us to work as a community to find a solution, rather than sending them to another area.

And what’s your favourite story?

I don’t have a favourite story so much as a couple of funny stories from being in this area. I’m a big walker and I love going through Green Park in the mornings . One of the funniest things I saw walking through Green Park one morning was a flock of sheep – that was a surprise! I’ve also had someone ask me where I get my shoes, because  I had  a spring in my step and she wanted to get that too. I had to break it to her that it wasn’t the shoes!

What’s your message for the people out there in Victoria?

Create a community. I think that London is very transient for people and it’s the same thing with companies who come to this area. When we moved here 12 years ago, we didn’t know anyone. I didn’t know where to go to get help, or to find the answers to things. Then I heard about the Victoria BID and my feeling was, ‘where were you when I needed you?’ I was pleased to find them, but if I’d known about them before I moved into the area, they could have helped me make a world of difference. People moving into the area, and people who exist here can create a better community by communicating better. It’s important to become more active in our lives here, because this is where most of us spend most of our time. So, I think we can make an even better community – that would probably be my message to Victoria.

What’s the biggest issue, challenge Victoria may face in the future?

I think it’s probably got to be the completion of Victoria Station and the perception of Victoria in general. Some people are still put off by the construction, and they think it’s more extensive than it actually is. They’re always surprised when they come out and realise how much it’s changed. There are so many new places here, I think it’s a challenge to change the perception that people have about Victoria and get them to come here and see it has become a destination instead of a thoroughfare, and I think that’s an exciting change. But I do think the continued construction around the train station will put people off.

What’s your favourite lunchtime spot?

I can’t choose just one! I love Ole & Steen.  It’s just a great to place sit and the food is absolutely wonderful, but I also love the Pret over by Waitrose. Of course, in the summertime I’ll be sitting up at Cardinal Place enjoying the sunshine. I also look forward to the new outdoor spaces available at the restaurants at Nova. I’ve tried every restaurant there.

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