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Bill Pawley, Founder The English Club Brazil

Listen to the Talk2 Brazil interview by Tom Reaoch with Bill Pawley.


Born London Aug 1943 (During the London blitz) Founder of the English Club Brazil.

Lived in many countries including Kuwait. Travelled extensively throughout the world (been most countries except Russia). I had been round the world once before I was eighteen years old. Have been round many times since.

· 10 years in the British Military Royal Navy as a marine engineer, tramping about the world.
· 10 years rising to the dizzy heights of industry, first as a contracts engineer and eventually becoming a General Manager for a multinational.


Worked all over the Middle East.

· Became redundant as a General manager after the company collapsed during the world oil crises, (we had oil powered foundries). This was life changing. I looked at it positively and decided to try my hand at another love “Writing” wrote my first novel
· From there I wrotemy first novel and after plays for theatre and TV but did not get published for many years. (I am now a published author and playwright. One book in Portuguese Que Nem Pelé.)
10 years in adult Higher Education rising to a Head of Department in a Polytechnic with 36,000 students and 2000 members of academic staff. Mind Boggling Education. (I left school to join the navy at 16 and had no formal qualifications, it wasn’t until I was 41 did I get my degree (in Education) along with a High Ranking Teaching Certificate and a Diploma by The Royal Society of Arts Teaching English as a Foreign Language).
· Technical: Commercial: Industrial and Creative Art.
· 7 years as the South American director of a British Publishing House: Evans Brothers Ltd,       London, based in Sāo Paulo.
· 9 years creating The English Club Brazil as an English Language entrepreneur.
· Then I returned to England to retire once more.
· Last year I was invited back by my new partner Daniel and together we are starting a new adventure with The English Club Brazil.
No one can ever accuse me of dragging my feet.
My own background is very chequered. I too am a published author with several books and plays under my belt. This includes a lot of Motivational Speaking and Team Building Leadership programs to some of the heavy weights.  I am a Londoner, a qualified Marine Engineer, went in the British Navy at 16 and served in submarines for some time.
I worked in Industry becoming a very young General Manager for a multi national when I was 34 and started my writing career after a life changing redundancy. I went to University at 39 and got my degree in Education at 41 (you will agree, this is a very strange combination of skills).
I then entered Uni as a full time lecturer and became equally ambitious once again to achieve becoming a Head of Dept in the biggest Polytec in Europe, with 36,000 students and 2000 Professors.
I came to Brazil 1990 and started a British Publishing House as a Director of Evans Brothers Ltd running the South American company. I started the English Club Brazil as a hobby, to start with, and then it became my full time business. I am passionate about helping people with their English, to make them realize that it is only about communication, to make mistakes and build confidence at the same time as making friends, networking and practicing your language skills.
I am involved in one Social Project in Itapcerica de Serra helping under-privileged teenagers learn English. The Charity I support in the UK is to read for the blind in our National charity The Talking Newspaper: A voluntary group who create and distribute the local newspaper to our community with the help of Scoteiros and a host of others
I was raised in a loving London suburban theatrical family and have had a passion for entertaining all my life.
I based the club’s beginnings on the fact that there are 20 million Brasileiros learning English at any one given time across this vast country and NO where - absolutely nowhere - for them to go and have an authentic Bash to use their English that has cost them a fortune to acquire.
We used the word Bash as a description of our events. A bash derives from the London Cockney expression of a Balada and was always at the heart of the community. You may have heard the old Cockney song “Knees Up Mother Brown” describing one of the old ladies who frequented the pub delicately lifting her skirt to show her knees as she danced to the music of the honkey tonk piano and spoons used as percussion.
Our events are always in English but ………with a huge amount of empathy for the learner. We have a team of trained NETWORKERS whose sole job is to help out in any way they can our guests for the evening. Many don’t need their help, some require constant attention. We use a variety of methods to elicit as much as we can from the members and the actual tools we use are well hidden. Nobody wants to be seen to be in a learning mode. And certainly not to make a fool of themselves in front of colleagues or strangers alike. But the focus is fun and an interesting evening with us.

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