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All the Best: Culture Night programme director Adam Turkington

The 43-year-old is the programme director of Culture Night Belfast. He lives in Belfast with his wife Ali and their children, Rory (13), Lois (11) and Clara (7)

My best moment: It was watching a wicker man effigy burn in the middle of Writer’s Square at the end of Culture Night in 2011 with thousands of people watching. I couldn’t quite believe we had got away with it. One of the things I love about event management is doing things that are a little bit out there.

My best song

I’m still listening to Daniel Avery’s album Drone Logic a good few years after it was released. There’s also a track called Looped on an album by a band called Kiasmos, which seems to be constantly on my playlist. 

My best job

I’m self-employed, so I can work on a number of different projects and I can’t believe it took me until I was nearly 40 to do it. I have so much more control over what I do and don’t have to tailor my work-related decisions to any business plan or corporate structure.

My best way to relax

I like to cook — taking a couple of hours to prepare something is how I unwind, and I make a point of it even at my busiest times. I like making pizzas from scratch, as I can make them to order for the kids.

My best buy

I spent £20 on a year-long subscription to Belfast Bikes. I hesitated at first, as I wasn’t sure if I would use the bike often enough, but it’s amazing — and I use it almost every day.

My best advice

When I started working at the Waterfront Hall as an event manager, I was told the most important thing was to look after the cleaners, front of house staff and support staff. When you get in trouble they’re the ones who will bail you out. I’ve carried that idea through to Culture Night and try and make sure every single person on the team knows how vital they are.

My best gift

My wife recently got me a pizza peel — it’s a big paddle that you use to put pizza in the oven. At first I thought it was a little extravagant, but I now realise it’s wonderful. It means I don’t have to use a fish slice and risk getting my arms burnt by the hot oven.

My best achievement

Culture Night and the first year we did it. We had 125 different projects and I was the only member of staff and didn’t start until June. There are now four members of staff and two interns and we start in April.

My best film

Jaws. I’ve realised over time it’s the perfect piece of cinema. It’s 40 years old and it’s still so watchable. Spielberg was one of the first generation of new  directors who had  grown up thinking visually.

My best book

Lullaby by Chuck Palahniuk. I love the way he writes and takes real stories and turns them into something fantastic.

Culture Night Belfast this Friday will have more than 250 free events in the city centre. Go to

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