Debbie Heron, Owner & Editor of ‘Roundabout Hinckley’ and ‘Roundabout the Villages’
An award-winning magazine publisher and the founder of a women’s business networking group based in Leicestershire
Originally from Kent, I moved to the Midlands for love! I met my now partner Nick 19 years ago and we have been together ever since.
We lived in Coventry for a while before moving to Hinckley in 2002. At that time, I was managing a customer service team for an engineering firm based in the town, so the commute to work was a matter of minutes!
In 2009, I took a real leap of faith and left my job without having set anything up – and with no publishing background. I have made big decisions throughout my life and they’ve always worked out, and I had my heart set on creating a glossy full-colour magazine which was all about Hinckley. I was confident I could use my background in customer service to make a go of it, so I set about getting the wheels in motion.
Nick and I decided that if the venture didn’t start earning by six months, I’d get a ‘proper’ job. A decade later, ‘Roundabout Hinckley’ is still going strong and I successfully launched a sister publication – ‘Roundabout the Villages’ – in 2015.
Both magazines, which are bi-monthly, free and A5-sized, are similar content-wise – containing local news, reviews and community and events pages alongside articles about local charities. There’s a nice balance between the editorial and advertising sections, and I include useful telephone numbers so that people will keep the magazine as a handy resource for their local area.
From an advertising perspective, I operate on an ‘exclusivity’ basis – featuring only one company per business type. For me, this is an ethical approach which has proven to be a successful blueprint to build upon.
In 2016, I founded Women that Connect – a business networking group for women which currently has 38 members. Also operating on an ‘exclusivity’ basis, I love nothing more than bringing people together. Often, there’s work-based synergy or friendships formed.
Nick and I are happy and settled – sharing our home with two rescue cats called Maisie and Rosie. I absolutely love being my own boss and never have a ‘Sunday evening’ feeling. I look forward to each week with positivity, as I never know who I’m going to meet!