“School for Creative start-ups has been a great experience from beginning to end. Originally from the UK but living in the Middle East, there isn’t much assistance for new startups in the region. When I was accepted onto S4CS, I had to make a decision to travel every month, once I had committed, I did a 6800 mile round trip for each session. The course builds up information on how to start and develop your business, so each part is essential. As well as the extensive knowledge and effective teaching from Doug Richard they have different guest speakers in their own areas of expertise, who provide industry experience on the issues you face as a start-up. As a whole the course has provided me with fantastic guidance, in depth knowledge and a wonderful experience. It has also put me in the position to make great contacts throughout the year and at the end of year showcase, as well as meeting great friends. S4CS is a great course if you want to focus your efforts and give structure to your goals, I would thoroughly reccommend it to anyone who is ready to be pro-active about their business idea. It was worth every minute of the travelling!”

Deborah Henning

I’m not actually aware of any other programmes such as S4CS, particularly ones focussed solely on the creative sector. What makes the programme unique is the support and willingness of the team in helping us succeed; they are extremely responsive and encouraging which is invaluable at the early stages of our start up when we need a lot of support!

Rebecca Goss

“I have always wanted to enjoy building my business and School for Creative Startups has allowed me to do this for the 1st time. Most importantly however, if School for Creative Startups existed two years ago I would have saved myself £15 000 in mistakes”

Mohammed Jamal

“S4CS has really helped me to take a step back from my business and view it more professionally and see it more clearly. I’ve realized for the first time that I don’t have to do everything myself and that I can work collaboratively with others to help my business succeed.

One of the best things about the programme is the opportunity it has given me to meet other Kent creatives.”

Astrid Goldsmith

“Following a really well-received pitch to Mary Portas and her team at House of Fraser, I called the buyer, because I thought they’d gone cold, but when we spoke she said that they had no questions from me as my pricing and terms were covered unlike some designers—so thank you S4CS! If I wasn’t on the course I’d never have been able to do this.”

Tina Crawford

“I really feel that S4CS has given me so much confidence and encouragement and this has help me get my business of the ground much quicker than if i was going it alone. I think it is a fantastic program and much needed in the creative sector. I feel honoured to have the opportunity to be involved.”

Emma Rampton

A key difference between art college and S4CS is that at college, the coursework is academic and our results effect our grade, but the subject of S4CS is our own business and so successes have very real consequences.

Jim Rokos

“The teaching was aimed perfectly at creatives, and the speakers were interesting and insightful. I feel I have learnt loads and found a community of like-minded people. The S4CS team was supportive and really helpful.”

Saskia Lesse

“School for Creative Startups gives the creative community a voice and helps its’ entrepreneurial talent maximise their potential and reach their goals and objectives. My belief is that the School for Creative Startups helps emerging creative talent make their dreams a reality.”

Charlotte Hogg

“S4CS is an excellent course, with great trainers and amazing talented students with which to share the brave, exciting journey of starting a creative business. I absolutely loved being a part of it and have learnt a lot of valuable information from the best and most inspirational entrepreneurs around. Thank you team S4CS!”

Hajera Memon

“S4CS has completely changed my business. I now approach my business in a totally different way and I know how to think bigger and have broken through so many mental barriers. I couldn’t see a way to make it the financially successful business I always wanted it to be or how to scale it, but now I can. Thank you”

Gemma Blacker

“I really feel that S4CS has given me so much confidence and encouragement and this has helped me get my business of the ground much quicker than if i was going it alone. I think it is a fantastic program and much needed in the creative sector. I feel honoured to have the opportunity to be involved.”

Rampton and Kemp

“The School for Creative Startups is a great way to share the knowledge that will lead to a creative revolution with benefits for all.”

Loyd Grossman

“It has been a hugely rewarding experience. The quality of staff, teachers and available information has always been of the very highest quality.”

Louise Hollamby

One of the best things about the course is that I’ve met so many brilliant people. It’s great to be around coursemates that understand the stress of starting your own business, and are really supportive in what you’re trying to achieve. There have been times when I’m so tired and busy that you almost loose sight of what you’re doing, but after a monthly workshop/several cigarettes with your coursemates you leave feeling recharged and ready to smash it again!

Katie Harris

I particularly like the format of S4CS being able to attend the course while still having other commitments is a huge help. Other courses can be inflexible and rigid with their schedules. S4CS has been an integral part of my business moving forward – I have gone from running on pure intuition to gaining access to a huge amount of quality knowledge in how to move forward in the RIGHT direction.

Claire O’Connell

“The school for Creative Start Ups is genuine initaives that is truly committed to lifting the barriers to creative business success not only in the UK but internationally- how could I not get behind it? I really wish it had been around when I started out.”

Foluke Akinlose

Overall School for Startups has a practical, interactive, attitude toward teaching that is very unconventional. I think others teaching entrepreneurs should really take a page out of S4CS’s book and adopt some of their techniques. It’s all so simply put together. No jargon and terms only understood by insiders, just plain hands-on knowledge that actually impacts the student’s business plans by making everything easier.

Eve Anna Liszczyk

The 10 questions exercise during Bootcamp was really helpful because it refined our business idea and made us set some short and long term goals. The feedback from the other members that are not in the same area are really useful.

Aline Yin Tsen Lau

“S4CS more than anything has made me realise that starting up is not that difficult and some mystic secret: you just need to do it.”

Nanna Sandom

S4CS made us more aware of the strengths and weaknesses of our business and improvements we can make and emphasised the strong points and the impact that they will make on our business.

Vasso Asfi

“Self promotion and creativity aren’t natural bedfellows so S4CS is a wonderful chance to help creativity flourish where it might have gone to waste.”

Alice Instone

“The course has given me a much welcomed educational structure and support, as well as an emotional shoulder to lean on which is hugely welcomed after a lonely struggle.
I’m learning the tools to allow me to realise my creative ideas in a practical and realistic way with fellow creatives who have the same creative talents, obsessive ideas and business mental-blocks as I do.”

Rachel Bonney

“Doug has transformed my perception of business as being dull, grey, (paint by) numbers into a colourful, visual, collage. Awkward questions are never avoided, failures are acknowledged and successes are celebrated.”

Dickie Wilkinson

“Basic business skills such as pricing are not part of the art school curriculum and – as a result – artists are vulnerable to bad advice in that crucial first year out of college. I’m backing School for Creative Startups to guard against that by connecting new entrepreneurs with a superb team of experts.”

Justin Hammond

“Without S4CS we simply wouldn’t be where we are today. The past year has seen us challenged, supported, encouraged and built up into a thriving business with an array of skills we did not have before. S4CS is like no other course, accelerator or incubator – wholeheartedly unique, incredibly engaging and the best decision any business can make”

Laura Fisher

S4CS tells you what you REALLY need to know succinctly without all the frills of a full blown academic programme. The methods of teaching are entertaining and inspiring, but importantly, practical.

Josephine Last

I’m supporting the School for Creative Startups as its so important to pass on knowledge through experience – its the kind of understanding you can’t necessarily get from college. There is so much about the creative industry that you don’t know, growing up – and I’m looking forward to answering some interesting questions! There is a lot to share.


The teaching methods I have experienced with S4CS have been very interactive and engaging involving a lot of audience participation, which has helped keep the information relevant and valuable to us. Many of the business ideas on the course have been used as case studies and I find this particularly useful as it gives you an insight and better understanding of the subject.

Natalie Stevens

“The programme has literally changed me from an event producer into a business director. I think completely differently. I am confident. I can create more opportunity and growth.

It makes me feel not alone and instead part of a group of talented and dynamic business owners. Some I know I will work with for a long time.”

Jane Morley

“I have studied business at university and what I needed is “real life” business understanding and this is what the programme proposed and lived up to my expectations of providing. No nonsense, no jargon, easy to understand business planning and starting out. Contacts I’ve made have been invaluable. The network of creative people in the same situation as me is something I would never have had access to had it not been for S4CS.”

Jane Gois

The showcase at the end of the program was a fantastic way to see if my business really had legs and also to learn how I can improve what I sell so its even easier to sell in the months and years to come. I am looking forward to watching my company go from strength to strength with all the important pieces of information and new skills I’ve acquired.

Madeleine St. Claire

Rather than trying to get creatives to ‘think’ differently, S4CS takes business principles and presents them in a way that allows them to be easily understood – this makes the entire learning process much more enjoyable and instills a confidence and self assurance that I believe is not offered on any other programme. We’ve been lucky to receive expert advice from Doug on our business plan and strategy, support and guidance from our mentor Time Out Chairman Tony Elliott as well as exposure to some amazing people and opportunities that money just cannot buy.”

Hannah Needham

For me, having an advisor has been priceless. I was pushed and supported in equal measure, the outcome of which is a manifesto and strategy for my business, ‘This Changed Me’. This would not have been the case if I hadn’t been on this programme.

The workshops have been enlightening, in particular, social media, negotiation and pitching.

The whole experience has supported me as a co-founder to talk a new language and feel much more confident in my own ability to run a tech startup and taking my business to launch and beyond.

Delyth Johnson

“School for Creative Startups gives people an invaluable structure within which to grow and develop their dreams. Perhaps most important of all is the support network it offers. There is help and inspiration at every turn.”

Rebecca Heald

“I have had all my knowledge aligned to a great and high degree. This has allowed me to change direction and go from concept to launch within 8 weeks. I could not have done this without the course”

Chris McGee