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A Week In My Life: Oonagh Barrington, PR & Media Manager, intu Trafford Centre

Trafford Centre _115

This week Oonagh Barrington, PR & Media Manager for intu Trafford Centre, runs us through a week in her working life. To suggest another senior media or creative figure for A Week In My Life, please email

Monday 9th January

Monday starts with a session at the gym. I’m certainly not a gym bunny (I’m innately lazy) but Monday is one of the few days I can’t think of an excuse not to go. Then I rush to work eating breakfast in the car – it’s certainly the reason my car is a mess and maybe why no one likes sharing my car!

The day started with a recce with the BBC who are looking to film Rip Off Britain here in March. Lots of little details need to be worked out before they come, everything from booking additional security, ordering swipe cards, booking lunch and green rooms and even measuring their signage to make sure it sits within the centre regulations. It can be a lengthy process but really pays off in the end.

Monday nights are life admin nights – I tend to pile everything I consider ‘boring’ like re-mortgaging, booking trains, online shopping etc. into one evening so I can get on with fun things like watching Geordie Shore the rest of the week.

 The intu Trafford Centre

Tuesday 10th January

Most days start with emails – I make it a priority to check every piece of coverage we appear in and check that we’re referred to as ‘intu Trafford Centre’ throughout. We are 18 years old so our shoppers still want to refer to it as ‘the Trafford Centre’ however we were bought by intu in 2011. We’re getting there though!

Tuesday is meeting day – managers meeting and then a marketing meeting with Richard, our general manager. We run through things which need his sign-off, this week that involved announcing the opening of a Leon restaurant and various filming requests that come in.

Wednesday 11th January

We’ve been told to expect snow every day this week so I keep rushing to the window first thing in the morning. Unfortunately Stockport is never snowed in so there’s no excuse for a duvet day!

I spent part of the day having a social media catch-up with Hayley and Sophie in the marketing team. We cover the focus for the week ahead, what our followers are finding engaging and whether we need any suggestions from retailers. We’re all passionate about great content whether that’s a new video app, or perfecting every photo we take.

It’s my husband’s birthday next week so I finish work with a half-hour shop. Nobody can shop as quickly as I can round our centre. I know exactly what bargains are to be had and where and always like to find something unique, something you can’t find anywhere else.

Thursday 12th January

A Week In My Life: Tim Gee, Estates Director, Leeds DockToday Nikki, events manager, and I are planning Valentine’s Day. We’re working with BBC Radio Manchester on a mass marriage vow renewal against the spectacular backdrop of the main dome. It’s based on St Paul’s Cathedral so a perfect backdrop for events which look stunning there. Over 200 couples renewing their vows in the centre of a busy shopping centre – simple! I like to look at the bigger picture, the message, how it will look on a photo. Nikki likes to look at the timings, minute by minute and where exactly everyone will stand and what they’ll say. We’re totally opposite but work well.

Tonight is January’s Boozy Book Club, a kind-of monthly affair with ex-colleagues from Havas PR. We talk about a book for around 40 minutes (tonight is the Handmaid’s Tale) and then drink wine for about four hours.

Friday 13th January

More meetings – this time with Selfridges and then with Metrolink. Selfridges is always great fun, it’s good to collaborate on ideas with such a fantastic retailer. Metrolink is an exciting project that will truly change the make-up of this centre for good, but one that won’t be complete until 2020. Our focus is communicating to shoppers and employees the full scale of the project and how it may impact them.

It’s a quick rush off to Derbyshire after work – it’s my friend’s 30th birthday and we’re celebrating at a cottage with a murder mystery party entitled Death on the Gambia. My character is a chief buyer for the Happy Peanut Butter Company, while my husband is Katanga, the Gambian deck hand. Who knows how this’ll turn out…

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