Dragons Den – Torbay

The Project

We were asked by TDA to raise the profile of the key sectors in Torbay (Photonics, Hospitality, Construction & Health & Social Care).

Focussing on Year 8’s, our Enterprise Coordinator for Torbay Jacqui Hobson developed a Dragons Den event which was run in the Autumn of 2022.

Over 1000 students took part across all eight mainstream schools, coming up with some amazing ideas.

Each school then picked a team of students to represent them and take their idea further with the support of a local business mentor.

The event was held at the Lyceum Theatre where the students pitched their ideas to 4 Dragons – Tony Horsey – Ortus Construction, Alison Upton – Rowcroft Hospice, David Rowe – Conroy Couch and Tim Durrant – Effect Photonics.

As well as the Dragons, the auditorium was full of Enterprise Advisers, business mentors, stakeholders and a TV crew from the BBC!

The prizes were awarded by Steve Reynolds from the Torbay Business Forum as follows:


Students have a better understanding of the wealth of Career opportunities in Torbay, where there are world leading experts and industries that have so much to offer.

Businesses worked closely with the schools, talking in assemblies, becoming mentors and inspiring students to think differently about what is on offer in Torbay.

Students are able to make the connection between what they are learning in school and the how that fits in the world of work.

Students developed their soft skills through working together as a team, challenged themselves by presenting in a theatre in front of an audience and were proud of themselves for all that they had achieved.

Participating Schools are: