Luke Manning

Luke Manning

Luke Andrew Manning (born January 3rd 1978) is a British writer and musician. He co-founded the online magazine The Smoke Room and has been a freelance journalist for publications across the world, including The Guardian and The Moscow News. He has also had work published in The Daily Telegraph, The Belfast Telegraph and The Scotsman.


Born in Toronto, Canada, Manning was brought up near London, UK. After attending Caterham School in Surrey, he went on to study Biochemistry at the University of Warwick. He currently lives in Surrey with his wife Anita and children Annabel and Finley.


In 2006 he wrote a series of articles on George Galloway, MP for Bethnal Green and Bow, culminating in a feature on the London local elections where Galloway's Respect Party was involved in the hotly contested Tower Hamlets seat. Allegations of vote rigging before the ballot and Galloway's high profile after his appearance on Celebrity Big Brother pushed the article to prominence in The Guardian.

Having written promotional material for BBC Presenter René Carayol and conducted interviews with then Mayor of London Ken Livingstone, broadcaster Marcel Theroux, businessman Duncan Bannatyne, Pulitzer prize-winning author William Taubman and musician Cormac Battle, Manning started up an online magazine and discussion forum called The Smoke Room with Ben Wilding. Designed to provide a platform for underground talent in writing, music and photography, it attracted an edgy, left field fanbase.

The Smoke Room closed a year later in 2007 after he went on to work full time as Creative Director for René Carayol, across his Carayol and Inspired Leaders Network (ILN) brands. Manning's friendship with George Galloway MP was again evident when the politician became the first guest speaker of the 2007 agenda for ILN.

Inspired Leaders Network

ILN continued to attract a broad business audience throughout 2007 and 2008 with speakers and members including the Leader of the House Of Lords Rt Hon Baroness Amos, Birmingham City FC Chairman David Gold, BBC's The Apprentice winner Timothy Campbell, MOBO founder Kanya King, Aquascutum CEO Kim Winser and actor Colin Salmon.

Media Profile

As a business consultant Manning has helped shape the media profile of various public figures, including BBC newsreader Kate Silverton, Chairman of Ofsted Zenna Atkins and celebrity chef Patrick Williams.

In October 2008 he co-presented the "Aspirational Non Celebrity" award with 400m Gold Medallist Christine Ohuruogu to author Sandy Lewis at the Inspiration Awards For Women. The awards, held at Cadogan Hall in central London, were organised by the charity Breakthrough Breast Cancer.


In February 2008 Manning joined forces with South London Drum and Bass artist Andy Skopes to form the downtempo, alternative music project Smoke Room, using the name from his previous online forum.

Smoke Room were signed by Bath-based independent record label A Future Without later that month.

* [ Inspired Leaders Network]
* [,,1768358,00.html The Battle for Tower Hamlets]
* [ Duncan Bannatyne Interview]
* [ René Carayol]
* [ Smoke Room]

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