Break the Mould – the heroes behind the design
When we kicked off our collaboration with Hatch we had a very specific idea in mind. We wanted to celebrate and pay homage to a group of homegrown British people that broke the mould – creative, brilliant people that dared to stand out among their peers, who did things differently to the people before them, who changed the course of history through their ideas, imagination, creativity, will, hard work and contributions to society. It’s not exhaustive, of course, but it’s a pretty good start. And we knew Hatch’s completely unique style was the only way to bring this to life.
So here we thought we’d tell you a little more about the unique characters that feature on the Venus & the Cat indoor pot ‘Break the Mould’.
Dame Tanni Grey Thompson (born 26 July 1969)
Baroness Carys Davina Grey-Thompson, DBE, DL, or Tanni, as her sister nicknamed her, is a true inspiration. If you need a story of how to overcome the odds and break the mould, then this is the story for you.
Born with spina bifida, Tanni committed herself to athletics and competed in multiple disciplines across five Olympic Games, winning eleven Gold medals, four Silver and one Bronze. She also won two World Championship Golds, three Silvers and one Bronze. For good measure, she also found the time to win the London Marathon six times and break more than 30 world records.
After her competitive retirement, Tanni sat on the boards of the National Disability Council, The Sports Council for Wales, the English Lottery Awards Panel and UK Sport, The London Marathon, the board of Transport for London and the London Legacy Development Corporation. She also Chairs the board of ukactive.
Tanni became patron of numerous charities including the Duke of Edinburgh Awards scheme, the Wembley Stadium Legacy Trust, President of Sportsleaders UK, a UNICEF Ambassador, Academy member of the Laureus World Sport Academy (trustee of the Sport for Good Foundation) and a Council member for the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust. In July 2011 she was announced as the President of the Leadership 20:20 Commission, the Commission on the future leadership of Civil Society. Tanni also served as a Trustee of V, the Tony Blair Sports Foundation, Sportsaid Foundation (which she was a recipient as a young athlete), as an International Inspiration Ambassador and Chair of the Women's Sports and Fitness Foundation Commission on the Future of Women's Sport.
Tanni was introduced into the House of Lords on 29 March, swearing the oath of allegiance in both English and Welsh and was created a Life Peer in the process.
In 1993 Grey-Thompson was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) for "services to sport", advanced in 2000 to Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) again for "services to sport" and then in 2005 was promoted to Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE).
We’re still not done.
Tanni received numerous degrees including Honorary Doctorates from Oxford University, Oxford Brookes University, the University of Greenwich, Bath University, Newcastle University, Liverpool John Moores, the University of Leicester, Sheffield Hallam University, University of Hull, University of Exeter, Heriot Watt University, the Open University, University of Wales Newport, the University of Wales, Leeds Metropolitan University, Loughborough University (both a Master and Doctorate), Teesside University, York and Ripon College, University of Swansea, University of Glamorgan, UWIC, University of Surrey, Southampton University, Manchester Metropolitan University, Staffordshire University and Cardiff University. Grey-Thompson received a Lifetime Achievement Award and another Honorary Doctorate from the University of East London in May 2011
Daley Thompson (born 30 July 1958)
Francis Morgan Ayodélé Thompson, CBE, was a hero to a generation. A decathlete, Thompson won Olympic Gold twice, in consecutive Games, breaking the world record for the event four times. He also achieved golds at the Commonwealth Games, European and World Championships. He was subsequently described as "the greatest all-round athlete [the United Kingdom] has ever produced."
Daley didn't have it easy. Born in London his father was largely absent from his youth and his mother sent him to boarding school in Sussex for 'troubled children'. Whilst still young his father was shot dead. He turned his teenage focus to athletics and set out on his storied, record-breaking journey. His determination, will to win and showmanship endeared him to the British public. He won BBC Sports Personality of the Year in 1982, was appointed an MBE in the 1983 New Year Honours and was promoted to the CBE in the 2000 New Year Honours.