Inspire Hertfordshire November 2021

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INSPIRE.47 The business magazine of Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce

November - December 2021

INSIDE New Chamber Patrons

p12 & 15


Chamber welcomes two new Patrons

Area Focus

Diversity in Dacorum


Tourism & Hospitality

Gearing up for a brighter future


Hertfordshire Global

Excellence in International Trade

FILM STUDIO provides perfect backdrop as awards ceremony shines spotlight on business success p4


A year of progress Briege Leahy Chief Executive Officer Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce WELCOME to the latest edition of Inspire. As we head towards the end of 2021, it’s a good time to reflect on what has been a challenging year for businesses. After much upheaval, hopefully we’re all moving into smoother waters and now seems an appropriate time to hail the resilience of Hertfordshire’s businesses and celebrate their achievements. Here at the Chamber, we’re also proud of our achievements this year. The last few months have seen a return to live events where, thankfully, we’ve been able to meet in person again. It was fantastic to see business leaders at our recent Inspiring Herts Awards, our Wellbeing Conference and Meet the Buyer events with Sky and Mace.

We’ve also completed the first year of our Entrepreneur Foundation, a unique initiative that has provided training, advice and mentoring to dozens of talented individuals and connected budding entrepreneurs with experienced mentors. Another notable achievement is our popular #KeeptheHeartinHerts campaign,

which has championed a ‘buy local’ approach to doing business and helped to support the county’s economic recovery. We’ve also promoted sustainable practices that help to clean up our environment and it was great to see the British Chambers of Commerce having a presence at the COP26 forum to discuss ways in which we can combat climate change. At Herts Chamber we like to think we’re proactive and outwardfacing and we don’t work in silos. We look to form meaningful partnerships with businesses and other key stakeholders and throughout 2021 we’ve forged collaborations with Suffolk, Norfolk, Essex, Cambridge and Bedfordshire Chambers of Commerce to back plans for a new nuclear power station on the Suffolk coast. We’ve come together to encourage businesses to sign up to the Sizewell C supply chain portal so that they’re ready to capitalise on the many commercial opportunities

as and when the government gives the project the green light. This year has also seen Herts Chamber grow its membership and we were delighted to welcome five new Patrons and launch our new Diamond Club package to give our members more choice. As we look to the future, there’ll be further Meet the Buyer events as well as our Christmas Chamber Lunch, with more live events to follow in 2022. Finally, a big thank you to our Chamber team for their hard work this year, and our Patrons, members, stakeholders and board members for their support. It has been much appreciated.

Briege Leahy

Chief Executive Officer Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce

Contents Inspiring Hertfordshire Awards Winners 4-6 Members News Patron Focus

9 12 & 15

Area Focus


Chamber Events


Wellbeing Conference


Health & Wellbeing


Members News


Inspirational Leader


Broxbourne is Keeping the Heart in Hertfordshire 34-35 Entrepreneur Foundation 38-39 Editorial and General Enquiries Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce MacLaurin Building, 4 Bishops Square, Hatfield, Hertfordshire, AL10 9NE Tel: 01707 502180 Email: Web:

Tourism & Hospitality


Hertfordshire Growth Hub




Members News


New Members


Membership Benefit


Members News


Hertfordshire Global


4 16


Long Standing Members 54-55 Skills & Development


Chamber News


Last Word


Publisher Ian Fletcher Benham Publishing Limited Aintree Building, Aintree Way, Aintree Business Park, Liverpool L9 5AQ Tel: 0151 236 4141 Email: Web:

52 Published November 2021 © Benham Publishing and Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce Advertising and Features Karen Hall Tel: 0151 236 4141 Email:

Disclaimer Inspire is published for Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce and is distributed without charge to Chamber members. All correspondence should be addressed to Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce. Views expressed in Inspire are not necessarily those of Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce. Reprinting in whole or part is forbidden except by permission. ©2021 Please note that submitting an article does not guarantee publication. Whilst every effort is made to ensure the accuracy and reliability of material published in this journal, Benham Publishing and its agents can accept no responsibility for the veracity of claims made by contributions in advertising or editorial content. Benham Publishing cannot be held responsible for any inaccuracies in web or email links supplied to us.

Production Manager Mark Etherington Tel: 0151 236 4141 Email:

Media No. 1852




Lord-Lieutenant of Hertfordshire, Robert Voss CBE CStJ

Briege Leahy

Film studio provides perfect backdrop as awards ceremony shines spotlight on business success

The “magic and wizardry” of Hertfordshire businesses was celebrated at a glittering awards ceremony held for the first time at the iconic Harry Potter film studios.



John Darin

Jeremy Bishop


he 10th Inspiring Hertfordshire Awards, held by

Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce at the Warner Bros. Studios in Leavesden, applauded the achievements of the county’s businesses and charitable organisations over the last year.


Local businesses, large and small, are at the heart of the growth of our county and the awards ceremony is an opportunity to recognise business leaders’ hard work, innovation and contribution to Hertfordshire. The judges commented that as well as overcoming its own unique challenges, the company had “identified an opportunity to use the rise of sustainability in the commercial world to develop and transform itself from a straight supplier to an organisation that now provides consultancy as well as products.”

The Inspiring Hertfordshire Awards 2020/2021 winners

Judges chose a winner and awarded a Highly Commended in each of the 21 categories, which included Family Business of the Year, Most Promising New Business, The Green Award, Entrepreneur of the Year, and Best Use of Technology. Briege Leahy, CEO of Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce, said: “After we made the difficult decision not to hold the 2020 awards, it was fantastic to see the return of an event that I know the business community always looks forward to. It was a delight to be able to celebrate the magic and wizardry of their achievements in such an iconic venue. “Local businesses, large and small, are at the heart of the growth of our county and the awards ceremony is an opportunity to recognise business leaders’ hard work, innovation and contribution to Hertfordshire.” The overall winner, crowned Inspiring Business of the Year 2021, was JPA Workspaces, a St Albans-based supplier of sustainable design, re-location and furnishing solutions.

Fiona Edwards, Head of Sustainability at JPA Workspaces, said: “We are delighted to have won the Inspiring Business of the Year award. It’s great that we, along with other local businesses, are being recognised, especially after such a difficult 18 months, we’re so pleased that sustainability has been recognised. Events like this bring the business community together and give us an opportunity to celebrate each other’s successes.” Another special award, Outstanding Contribution to Business, went to Chapman Ventilation, a family-run business in Welwyn Garden City that was founded in 1967 and is now owned and managed by the second generation who took over in 1998. Chapman Ventilation was commended for its charitable work along with its support for the Armed Forces. The Chamber thanked all those who sponsored the awards ceremony, including headline sponsors Hillier Hopkins, Chartered Accountants and Tax Advisers, and St Albans solicitors, SA Law. Elizabeth Wicks, Director at Hillier Hopkins, said: “Huge congratulations to all our winners and to JPA Workspaces for winning Inspiring Business of the Year. The competition was incredibly tough but ultimately JPA stood out.

Inspiring Business of the Year: JPA Workspaces

They were able to demonstrate that not only were they commercially successful, but that sustainability and community was at the very core of their business. Their passion for what they do, how they do it and their impact on the wider community is truly inspiring and something we can all learn from.” Simon Walsh, Partner at SA Law, said: “Vision, innovation and the skills to create, and make the most of opportunities were evident throughout the entries for the awards. Many congratulations to all our winners on their achievements and particularly to JPA Workspaces, deservedly the overall winner. Our thanks go to everyone involved in making the awards such a special event and for demonstrating that the spirit of opportunity and optimism is alive and well in the county.” Accolades were handed out to companies of varying sizes, while the challenges faced by the business community over the last year were recognised with the Hertfordshire Heroes Award 2020. These were given to a business, individual and charity which went above and beyond during the pandemic. Cont. >>>




Hertfordshire Heroes Award Charity winner: Isabel Hospice

Hertfordshire Heroes Award Individual winner: Julia George, Red Trouser Day Trust

Outstanding Services to the Community winner: Hertfordshire County Council Social Care Services

Hertfordshire Heroes Award Business winner: M.K. Ginder & Sons Funeral Directors

Business of the Year Small to Medium winner: Silent Sentinel

of Commerce (BCC), has continued to support its members as businesses navigated the challenges posed by the pandemic.

Business of the Year Medium to Large winner: Kane International

The ceremony, which took place on September 9th, was held in support of the BraveHerts Children’s Appeal, which cares for children with life-limiting or terminal illnesses. A number of local dignitaries attended the event, including the Lord-Lieutenant of Hertfordshire, Robert Voss CBE CStJ, the Mayor of Watford, Hertfordshire County Council and prominent business leaders. Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce, named the fastest growing Chamber in the UK 2019 by the British Chambers

Outstanding Contribution to Business winner: Chapman Ventilation

After the challenges of the past 18 months, the Chamber are very proud to have been able to finally host these awards. The gala dinner was exactly what we needed in order to showcase Hertfordshire’s innovation, creativity, diversity, and resourcefulness.

Jeremy Bishop, Chairman of Herts Chamber, said: “In March last year, the UK went into lockdown, but this did not stop the Herts Chamber from supporting its members: by switching to online events; delivering 155 between April 2020 and August 2021, by creating the Entrepreneur Foundation; recruiting 29 newly established businesses, and by introducing a new campaign, ‘Let’s Keep the Heart in Hertfordshire’ designed to assist the economic recovery and growth of all businesses in the county by creating new connections. After the challenges of the past 18 months, the Chamber are very proud to have been able to finally host these awards. The gala dinner was exactly what we needed in order to showcase Hertfordshire’s innovation, creativity, diversity, and resourcefulness.

I would like to offer my congratulations to every Finalist, Winner, and Highly Commended company, and to thank our Headline Sponsors, Associate Sponsors, Category Sponsors, and judges without whom, this wonderful celebration would not have been possible.”

To find out more information about the chamber, visit # InspiringHerts21 #10YearsofInspiringHerts #LetsKeeptheHeartinHertfordshire




The 2020-21 Winners and Highly Commended Companies: u Business of the Year East Herts

u Excellence in People Development

u Business of the Year North Herts

u Export Business of the Year

u Business of the Year South Herts

u Family Business of the Year

u Business of the Year West Herts

u Hertfordshire Heroes Award 2020

Winner CHEXS Highly Commended Croft Communications Winner Intuity Communications Highly Commended The Living Room

Winner AVS VAT Highly Commended Rayden Solicitors

Winner Alliance Intelligent Scaffolding Highly Commended Aubrey Park Hotel

u Business of the Year Medium to Large Winner Kane International Highly Commended Rayden Solicitors

u Business of the Year Small to Medium Winner Silent Sentinel Highly Commended IBC Simply

u Best use of Technology

Winner HBC Logistics Highly Commended PayByPhone Highly Commended Wagada

u Community Champion

Winner Home-Start Hertfordshire Highly Commended Resolve Highly Commended University of Hertfordshire Law School

u Digital Marketing Campaign of the Year Winner Wagada Highly Commended Sonovision

u Education in Employment

Winner SETPOINT Hertfordshire Highly Commended Hart Learning & Development

u Entrepreneur of the Year

Winner Dianne Lee, DLRC Highly Commended James Longcroft, Silent Sentinel

u Excellence in Customer Commitment Winner Kane International Highly Commended Lumina Technologies

Winner Sonovision Highly Commended CHEXS

Winner Silent Sentinel Highly Commended Kestronics Winner Gatwards of Hitchin Highly Commended Castaway Cottage

Winner (Business) Winner (Individual) Winner (Charity)

M.K. Ginder & Sons Funeral Directors Julia George, Red Trouser Day Trust Isabel Hospice, Children’s Bereavement Service

u Most Promising New Business

Winner Beyond Governance Highly Commended Castaway Cottage

u Property & Construction Project of the Year Winner

Jarvis Contracting (Watford Health Campus Project) Highly Commended Jarvis Contracting (Maiden Park Project) Highly Commended The Property Presenters

u The Green Award

Winner JPA Workspaces Highly Commended Emmaus Hertfordshire

u Workplace Wellbeing Award Winner Wagada Highly Commended Kestronics

u Year of Culture Award

Winner Trestle Theatre Company Highly Commended University of Hertfordshire

u Outstanding Services to the Community Winner

Hertfordshire County Council Social Care Services

u Outstanding Contribution to Business Winner

Chapman Ventilation

u Inspiring Business of the Year Winner

JPA Workspaces

The 2020 - 2021 Sponsors



Chartered Accountants and Tax Advisers

A helping hand to keep you on track For friendly expertise on accounts and tax, growth and strategies for exit and investment, get in touch today. Proud sponsors of the Inspiring Hertfordshire Awards 2020/21.

0330 024 3200 Watford, London and Milton Keynes

Independent member of


Hertfordshire Surveillance Company receive Queen’s Award for International Trade SILENT SENTINEL, a Hertfordshire-based manufacturer of thermal imaging and threat detection platforms exported around the world, was today presented with a prestigious Queen’s Award by the Lord Lieutenant of Hertfordshire, Robert Voss CBE CStJ. The surveillance and security equipment company, founded in Hertford in 2002, expanded in 2017 into its manufacturing facility in Stanstead Abbotts, which provides some 60 local jobs. The local brand meets security surveillance needs around the world, with Silent Sentinel products exported to over 55 countries across six continents. In 2019 Silent Sentinel opened its sister company, Sentinel Engineering, in Sandy, Bedfordshire, to bring fabrication of its metal components in-house.

Silent Sentinel expanded into North America with the establishment of Silent Sentinel Inc in St Petersburg, Florida in 2020, and into the Middle East with Silent Sentinel DMCC in Dubai, UAE. Recently in 2021, Silent Sentinel Inc reinforced its global commitments by supplying Mid-Wave Infrared thermal imaging platforms to safeguard the Mexican coast, as well as providing drone detection and tracking in East Africa. The company’s product range has also been expanded with the introduction of a Rapid Deployment Kit (RDK), Aeron Laser Range

New Youth Mayor and Deputy Youth Mayor elected A Year 12 student from Goffs Academy has been unanimously elected as the new Youth Mayor for Broxbourne. Ethan Yardley was chosen by members of the Broxbourne Youth Council at the latest meeting, on Wednesday 6 October. 2021/22 will be his first term as the Youth Mayor for the Borough. Ethan’s priorities this year as Youth Mayor are recruitment to the Youth Council, encouraging young people to actively participate in their community and working to protect the environment and the Borough’s green spaces. Ethan said: “It is an honour and privilege to have been elected as Youth Mayor and I am looking forward to a year of hard work for the young people of the Borough.” Adesola Jinadu-Adewale, a Year 11 student at Presdales School but resident in the Borough, was elected as Deputy Youth Mayor

for the 2021/2022 academic year. Elections for the Cabinet positions within the Youth Council will be held in the New Year. The Youth Mayor is a young person aged 11-18 who is elected by young people to represent young people. The Youth Mayor will contribute to discussions impacting on young people, raising issues where appropriate and make an annual report on the work of the Youth Mayor and Youth Council. The Youth Mayor will also chair the Broxbourne Youth Council, which is open to all young people aged 11-18 who live or study in the Borough of Broxbourne. The Youth Mayor and the Youth Council are politically neutral.

Finder, and the Jaegar Sonus acoustic hailer, all unveiled at DSEI 2021. Silent Sentinel also demonstrated its agility in combating the COVID pandemic by developing its Modum body temperature detection cameras, which were delivered rapidly and ordered in vast quantities for use in transport hubs, industrial facilities and workplaces. The Queen’s Awards are the most prestigious annual awards for UK businesses, recognising outstanding achievement. Silent Sentinel will receive the Queen’s Award for Enterprise for International Trade in 2020, reflecting the company’s growth and global reach. Paul Elsey, Managing Director said: “Winning the Queen’s Award for Enterprise for International Trade is a huge honour, and it shows the extraordinary global export level our team have achieved from our facilities in the UK and US. Silent Sentinel continues to expand and grow, and we look forward to continuing to provide our expertly manufactured products to meet threat detection needs all around the world.”

SUPPORTING FAMILIES IN THE COMMUNITY Every day children, young People and families miss opportunities to help them reach their goals.

Our mission is to support them by building self esteem, improving mental health and wellbeing whilst ensuring they have the personal tools to recognise and utilise those opportunities.


CHEXS bespoke 30 week programme offers an innovative whole family approach. Supporting children and young people though age appropriate activities, one to one coaching and small group work as well as offering parenting workshops, support groups, activities and advice thereby ensuring a unique and whole family support programme.


There are a variety of ways for businesses to get involved, including corporate sponsorship, charity of the year, developed donor relationships and volunteering your skills, to support CHEXS’ mission.

For more information on the difference CHEXS make: Business of the year East Herts winner 2021 – Inspiring Hertfordshire Awards.

Pete Maiden: 07974 262 875 Email: | INSPIRE


In aidIn ofaid of

In aid of


When private individuals capture sound or audio in their own property – including a garden or private parking space – they aren’t likely to infringe any laws or annoy their neighbours. If they capture video and sound outside their property, that is another issue.

Ring Doorbells Nathanael Young recently acted for the successful claimant in the ‘Ring Doorbell’ court case. He talks about the case and some points to consider.


What’s the issue with a Ring Doorbell?

Of course, the case wasn’t really just about a Ring Doorbell! There were four security devices involved, one of which was a Ring Video Doorbell 2. However, many people do not realise just how capable these devices are, both in capturing sound and audio over a wide area.

Ring cameras and other popular security devices can capture neighbours’ movements and conversations for some distance from the device. They can carry out surveillance not only of your own property, but areas around. In this case, the judge actually found the neighbour had harassed and intimidated my client, so the devices themselves were not the main issue. However, anyone who uses these devices on their home should be careful that they comply with the law.


What are the legal rules?


All security devices are capable of capturing

personal data, within the meaning of data protection legislation. If you are only capturing video and sound around your own home or garden, you benefit from an exemption. Capturing footage beyond that area is not automatically illegal. However, you have become a data controller with obligations under data protection legislation, a bit like those owed by businesses for their security systems. The difference is that while businesses are now used to complying with data protection law, that is not the case for private individuals.Do you really want to deal with subject access requests from your neighbours, for example? Because of the stark difference between capturing footage outside and inside your property, it is very important to understand the capabilities of your own equipment. If carefully placed, you can save yourself a good deal of trouble and risk.


What if the neighbours agree?

Just because you have legal obligations as a data controller, it doesn’t mean anyone will enforce them. You may find your neighbours are happy with you fitting security devices that cover a shared driveway, for example.


For that reason, if you do capture any footage outside your boundaries, you need to consult with neighbours that may be affected. Once again, you will have to be clear about what your equipment can do. If they agree, you may find you don’t have any issues in practice. Bear in mind this isn’t necessarily the end of the issue, though. For example, what if new neighbours move in? Even if you don’t get your neighbour’s agreement, the fact you consulted with them is an important factor if a dispute arises later, as it will help show you complied with your duties as data controller. However, you should definitely consider taking legal advice in that situation.

Please note the contents of this article are given for information only and must not be relied upon. Legal advice should always be sought in relation to specific circumstances.

01992 300333 24 Castle Street Hertford SG14 1HP




Britvic benefits from Chamber Patron status BY PAUL GRAHAM, MD, BRITVIC

How long has Britvic been a Chamber Patron?

The pandemic has severely impacted the entire economy, but it is often local communities and small businesses that have taken the biggest hit. This Patronage is our chance to give back through networking with other local businesses and scouting five-star talent, bolstering growth and support for the area.



This is a new, but fantastic relationship between Britvic and the Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce. We are headquartered at Breakspear Park in Hemel Hempstead, with around 300 to 400 people on site. Supporting stability and growth in our local community is extremely important to us and there is a natural fit for Britvic to be a Patron. Currently, we are recruiting for a wide range of roles in the area and are eager to see how the Patronage can help us to dip into Hertfordshire’s talent pool and offer residents an exciting and fast-paced career with some of the best-loved brands in the UK, such as Robinsons, J2O, and even Pepsi through our 20-year franchise bottling agreement with PepsiCo.

Why did you get involved? At Britvic, we have two core pillars that guide us: Healthier People and Healthier Planet. The wellbeing of our employees and customers is paramount to us; from offering tailored support programmes during the pandemic for staff, to low and no calorie options to consumers, we want to empower everyone to lead healthier lives. Being a Chamber Patron means that we can extend this ethos into the local community, alongside our commitment to creating a healthier planet. We were the first UK soft drinks company to have an approved 1.5°C carbon target, showcasing our commitment to protecting the environment and building a better future for everyone, in Hertfordshire and beyond.

What’s it like working with the Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce and local businesses in Hertfordshire? What benefits have you gained from it? Although our working relationship is new, we are delighted to be involved with the Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce and are looking forward to seeing what value

Britvic can provide to the area. From our side, we hope to be able to hire more individuals from the county and it’s great to be offering local job opportunities for the people of Hertfordshire. Now that restrictions are easing, we are particularly enthusiastic about upcoming events, especially those centred around the supply chain and ‘Meet the Buyer’. The pandemic has severely impacted the entire economy, but it is often local communities and small businesses that have taken the biggest hit. This Patronage is our chance to give back through networking with other local businesses and scouting five-star talent, bolstering growth and support for the area.

How confident are you of prospering as we move into a post-COVID world? What opportunities will there be for Britvic to grow the business? While the full course of the pandemic is unknown and the impact of Brexit is contributing to shortages across the sector, Britvic still saw encouraging revenue growth in 2021, with an increase of 22.8% in 2020. As markets reopen and the holiday season approaches, we are confident that we can continue our strong performance and bring our consumers the drinks they know and love, or are yet to discover. The soft drinks industry is a dynamic and resilient one, and has been able to meet not only the needs of the pandemic, but the planet too. For example, it is Britvic’s intention to switch all GB-made bottles to 100 percent recycled PET by the end of 2022, to reduce the detrimental impact of plastic waste on the environment. As well as bolstering sustainability, another core focus for us is our continued commitment to our Healthier People and Healthier Planet strategies, notably through our recent acquisition of plant-based drinks company, Plenish. We are eager to see what opportunities stepping into this sector will bring us, and hope to be able to bring a wider portfolio of healthy choices to a larger audience.

1_Hertfordshire Essex Rapid Transit

A C L E A N E R , G R E E N E R , H E A LT H I E R F U T U R E

Have your say on our ambitions for a new sustainable transport system From 18 November 2021 to 28 January 2022 we are seeking your views on the HERT - our vision for an accessible, reliable and affordable new transport system that better connects people to where they live, work and visit. Tell us what you think of our initial plans by completing the online survey at

Public Engagement, Autumn 2021

0300 123 4047

At Myers Clark, we are serious about your ambitions (but we are not serious people). We are in the people business. Although we have been in business for 100+ years, we are far from a ‘traditional firm’. We are on the journey with our clients, and we take their goals in business as seriously as they do. Doing what is necessary to stay compliant with HMRC just scratches the surface. We encourage our clients out of their comfort zone but supporting and challenging them on their path to success.

Our Values

Get off the fence: • influence goals and ambitions • make a recommendation and help make decisions • innovate and solve problems • be honest, don’t just say what people want to hear Achieve high standards: • hold yourself to account

• take pride in what you do • learn from your mistakes • don’t settle for good, strive to be your best Enjoy your work • be respectful and expect the same • promote a happy environment and be positive • find a healthy balance • don’t blame yourself or anyone else, just put it right Grow, support and challenge • be prepared to adapt and change • develop ourselves and others - share what you learn • influence key decisions and hold to account • don’t just do what you’ve always done

Chartered Accountants such as the year end accounts, management accounts, corporate and personal tax, bookkeeping, VAT, payroll etc but our clients are more than just a number to us. We utilise tech and help all our clients make the most of technology in their business, but the support is delivered by real experienced people who care about the real challenges and successes you will face. We want our passion for true partnership to be integral to any relationship.

Because at Myers Clark, we believe in relationships, not transactions.

Of course, we deliver the normal accountancy service that you would expect from a firm of

Get in touch to see if we can help you to achieve your ambitions. Visit





Chamber Patron status fires the


IMAGINATION TECHNOLOGIES has been part of the Hertfordshire community for more than 30 years. The private equity backed company designs and licenses market-leading intellectual property (IP) processor solutions, which are then used for a variety of applications worldwide. David Harold, Chief Marketing Officer at Imagination, says: “Essentially, we design parts of semi-conductor chips, such as central processing units (CPUs) and graphics, and licence them to large semi-conductor firms and sometimes to large electronics companies.” “We also do a lot in the automotive sector around 300 million cars contain our products - and they’ve also been used in drones, smartphones, televisions and a variety of other applications.” Imagination is well known for being in the iPhone and other Apple products. Most of Imagination’s business is export-led. The company sells into Europe, Asia and the US but despite having a global outlook, it also has strong roots in Hertfordshire. David, who has worked for Imagination since 1998, says: “We have around 600 staff in Kings Langley as well as 250 in other parts of the world, and we’ve built some good relations with local companies in our 30-plus years here in the county. Some companies that operate in our market were established in Hertfordshire mainly because we’re there.

earlier this summer. Having Patron status will enable us to link up with other high-tech talent and build on Hertfordshire’s growing reputation as a thriving technology hub.” David is also looking forward to forming connections with other professionals who don’t necessarily operate in the tech space. “Even businesses that don’t seem alike are connected nowadays by big issues such as the environment and social governance,” he says.

“We can discuss these important issues and work together to come up with imaginative solutions to real-world problems. “We also do CSR (corporate social responsibility) work and support charities such as Dens in Hemel Hempstead. They’re an excellent social support charity that helps homeless people get off the streets and into accommodation and employment. “Given our vast experience, we want to give something back to the local community that has shaped us for the last three decades. Our aim is to use local suppliers wherever possible and perhaps give pro-bono advice to less experienced businesses and entrepreneurs who might benefit from it. “As a company, we’ve been through lots of challenges that have forced us to adapt and build resilience. We can talk to entrepreneurs about our experiences and how they could cope if they find themselves in a similar situation.”

“Now we want to strengthen these relationships and build new connections, which is why we decided to become a Patron of Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce

Now we want to strengthen these relationships and build new connections, which is why we decided to become a Patron of Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce earlier this summer. Having Patron status will enable us to link up with other high-tech talent and build on Hertfordshire’s growing reputation as a thriving technology hub.

Our Imagination Engineers




DIVERSITY in Dacorum

The borough of Dacorum is nestled neatly in South West Hertfordshire. It’s made up of the main towns of Hemel Hempstead, Berkhamsted and Tring, plus a number of large and small villages. It’s also home to a range of diverse businesses that make an important contribution to the local economy. Being based in Hemel Hempstead is fantastic for us; it’s a phenomenal area for healthcare businesses. A lot of our business is based around our sales team, who are often travelling to see clients. They need an office location that’s easy to get to – to pick up stock, for example, before they go back out on the road again.


ne of those companies is GAMA Healthcare, a dynamic, innovative

company at the forefront of infection prevention technology. The company specialises in the manufacture and distribution of revolutionary infection prevention and control (IPC) products and the provision of exceptional aftercare support.




One major for example, before they go back out on the road again. We have the M1 and M25 within a few minutes’ drive so it’s ideal for us. If we were based in central London, it would be a nightmare! We also have 200 car parking spaces here, which you wouldn’t get in London. “Also, the traffic is often very congested on the roads into Hemel Hempstead, especially in Dr Allen Hanouka Its product range includes marketleading surface care products such as Clinell Universal, the NHS’ primary

the rush hour. Perhaps the council could look at traffic flow management and see how this could be improved. It’s a bit frustrating when you’re crawling along in the car.

disinfectant wipes, a comprehensive

“There are a range of travel and

range of skin care products and the

wider infrastructure initiatives that

world’s first mobile patient isolation

both County and local council are

room, Rediroom.

looking at to improve the access to

GAMA Healthcare was founded

“Overall, though, it’s a great place

Braverman and Dr Allen Hanouka.

to grow our business. We have

pathogens or bacteria from being transferred from person to person or from a surface to a person. Prevention is better than a cure and that’s what we try to achieve. Anti-microbial resistance is one of the biggest issues facing society at the moment so we’re operating in a very important market. “Being based in Hemel Hempstead is

to find new sales people as we grow our business. We’re a very happy team but we must grow and the only way to do this is to sell more – hence, the need to add to our sales team.

and from the train station.

in 2004 by two doctors, Dr Guy

Allen says: “We try to prevent

challenge for us is

330 staff and we’re looking to increase headcount to 450 in the next six months. Mike Penning, the MP for Hemel Hempstead, has been absolutely brilliant with us. He has been really supportive of our expansion plans.” Berkhamsted-based Sharp-aX Computer Systems is also reaping the benefits of being located in the

Jean Freeman Managing Director Jean Freeman says: “Customers and suppliers are able to call in and see us, which they often do.

fantastic for us; it’s a phenomenal area

area. The company is an innovative

for healthcare businesses. A lot of our

computer systems and business

It’s also easier to visit them as they’re

business is based around our sales

development specialist with a direct

located nearby; suppliers are able to

team, who are often travelling to see

focus on ERP software development

drop off demo kit quite easily. Similarly,

clients. They need an office location

and B2B SME support for the

it’s easier to support local customers

that’s easy to get to – to pick up stock,

wholesale and distribution industries.

when site visits are necessary.




“We always aim to employ local people – we believe travel should be kept to a minimum for environmental purposes. A long commute is not conducive to staff well-being and a healthy work-life balance. “COVID has been a major challenge but we’ve adjusted our work locations to suit individual employees. Some days they’re in the office and some days they’re not. One major challenge for us is to find new sales people as we grow our business. We’re a very happy team but we must grow and the only way to do this is to sell more – hence, the need to add to our sales team.” Hertfordshire Chamber and Dacorum Borough Council are doing their bit to support Sharp-aX and other local companies. Dacorum Borough Council is a key partner in the development of the Economic Recovery Board, which is working closely with businesses to create employment opportunities, address skills shortages and support start-up businesses.

Alan Anderson, the council’s portfolio holder for planning and infrastructure, says: “We have an economic development team supporting businesses and two business centres comprising 23 units and 21 offices. The business incubation sites help start-up businesses by providing support as well as virtual offices, mail handling and meeting room hire, as well as a Flexidesx area that allows individuals to visit a workspace on an hourly, daily, weekly or ad-hoc basis. “During the pandemic, we carried out surveys to ascertain what support was needed and administered a range of grants to support businesses. Our economic development team has always been available to help local businesses throughout the pandemic.” Despite the myriad of challenges brought about by the pandemic, Alan believes that Dacorum is a great destination for business. “It’s close to all major road networks with the M1 and M25 on the doorstep,” he says. “It’s close to major airports and has a rail service to London that takes just 40 minutes. “With a wide range of businesses from Amazon to GAMA healthcare, Dacorum boasts many business areas with the largest being Maylands Avenue, just off Junction 8 of the M1. The most represented business sectors in Dacorum are professional, scientific and technical activities, information and communication and construction.

Alan Anderson



“Businesses in Dacorum provide some 63,000 jobs. The majority of the 8,000 businesses in Dacorum

During the pandemic, we carried out surveys to ascertain what support was needed and administered a range of grants to support businesses. Our economic development team has always been available to help local businesses throughout the pandemic. are micro businesses, which demonstrates that there’s a highly entrepreneurial spirit here.” National property consultants, Aitchison Raffety is part of this entrepreneurial spirit. The company provides advice and guidance to all sectors of the development industry in Dacorum area and its work involves submitting and negotiating applications for new development to Dacorum Borough Council, which is the local planning authority. James Holmes, head of planning and development at Aitchison Raffety, says: “Dacorum is a positive place to work in so far that the council is much more supportive of growth and new development than other authorities. The council has a stated aim of being recognised as a great destination for


James Holmes business and the planning department has an open for business approach to new development. Obtaining planning permission for our clients has its challenges but working in an area where the council wants to engage is certainly desirable. “The challenges affecting our clients wishing to undertake development in Dacorum area are not unique to this area. Housing has risen to the top of the political agenda, as well as the constant challenge of building the right kind of homes in the right places. There will always be political pressure to develop on brownfield land first but to meet the demand that exists for new homes there will have to be more housing on greenfield sites as well, which results in challenges. There is a need to balance the need for new development and infrastructure against the need to maintain the environmental assets and unique character of the borough. There’s also the perennial issue of under-capacity in local planning authorities, as a shortage of officers makes negotiation more time-consuming and affects the speed and quality of planning decisions.

“The biggest change that would assist our clients in delivering the development needed is the better funding of local planning departments. Local authority planning departments play a crucial role in enabling development, and the speed and quality of decision making requires adequate resources. Our clients are keen to play their part, but if the government is serious about delivering the housing and other infrastructure that is needed, they’ll have to better assist local planning authorities by allocating appropriate resources to help them to do their job effectively.” The diversity of skills and people is a key reason why Keeto Life enjoys doing business in Dacorum. Andy Welch, founder and CEO, says: “Dacorum is great in terms of national logistics for both road and air and with a proximity in terms of commuter belt, we really have an incredibly intelligent workforce across every discipline imaginable. “The key challenges are the unknown and cashflow. We’re growing at such a rapid rate that we’re always learning

Andy Welch

The biggest change that would assist our clients in delivering the development needed is the better funding of local planning departments. Local authority planning departments play a crucial role in enabling development, and the speed and quality of decision making requires adequate resources.

and needing to invest. It would be great if Dacorum had a business and finance hub where start-ups could operate that encourages private investment. “Our growing start-up communities are breaking down the oligopolies in the FMCG sector, and we need more than ever to support these businesses. Small industrial warehousing is what we require. We’re already mature beyond saturation in terms of shared office hubs, but the availability of small industrial units is virtually impossible to come by. Dacorum Business Centre has a six month waiting list for units; let’s invest in these entrepreneurs and the entire community will enjoy the rewards.”



Try out Dacorum’s new flexible workspace


Tired of working from home? Poor internet connection hampering your productivity?

Why not try out Dacorum’s new flexible work space for free! Based in the Heart of Dacorum’s business community at Maylands Business Centre, Flexidesx provides a quiet, professional and relaxed working environment, boasting a range of services including: reliable internet connection, free parking, a high quality vending facility, Starbucks coffee, and showers. For more information and to reserve a desk, please get in touch on 01442 531002 or email us on, letting us know the dates and times you wish to book. 20

We look forward to welcoming you! INSPIRE

NEW HOMES FOR LOCAL PEOPLE On 15 October 2021, West Herts Homes held an on site ceremony to mark the completion of 4 high quality apartments in London Colney. The apartments at Mary Pedlow Court, have been named in honour of the past Chair and Honorary President of West Herts Homes. Joining Mary Pedlow at the ceremony were Daisy Cooper, M.P. for St. Albans, district councillors from St. Albans and Dacorum; representatives from the project managers, Redloft; the builders NFC; and legal advisers, PerrinMyddleton. Paul Eastwood, Chief Executive at West Herts Homes, said: “We are delighted to have brought this development to completion. My thanks to our staff and to our partners in helping to create properties that are a valuable contribution towards providing homes for local people in an area where affordability is a big issue. We are proud that we have built these new homes from our own resources, without recourse to public subsidy.” INSPIRE


10 tips One One to a green energy Switch

Switch to a green energy supplier supplier Why? Switching to a green energy tariff sends Why? aSwitching clear message to your energy supplier to a green energy tariff sends that there is a demand for clean, a clear message to your energy supplier low drives that carbon there iselectricity, a demandwhich for clean, investment and helps to decarbonise low carbon electricity, which drives grid electricity. all green tariffs investment andNot helps to decarbonise are equal– make sure your supplier grid electricity. Not all green tariffs operates their own renewables or only are equal– make sure your supplier purchases from renewable generators. operates their own renewables or only purchases from renewable generators. How? 1. Find out when your current energy How? contract endscurrent (shownenergy on your 1. supply Find out when your energy bill). supply contract ends (shown on your 2. energy Get a quote bill). from a new supplier such as: Good Energy, Octopus 2. Get a quote fromEcotricity, a new supplier such Energy, Bulb or Green Energy UK. as: Good Energy, Ecotricity, Octopus 3. Give notice oldEnergy supplier that Energy, Bulbtooryour Green UK. you intend to switch. 3. Give notice to your old supplier that 4. Sign up withtoyour new supplier. you intend switch. 4. Sign up with your new supplier.

Two Two on reducing all Focus

Focusof onwaste reducing all types types of waste Why? Wasted Why? energy, materials, food, and water contribute to climate change Wasted energy, materials, food, and and cost you money. Did you know up to water contribute to climate change and 46% of business energy consumption cost you money. Did you know up to happens outsideenergy of normal working 46% of business consumption hours? Or that 2 million tonnes of edible happens outside of normal working food ends up in landfill each year? hours? Or that 2 million tonnes of edible How? food ends up in landfill each year? 1. Reduce your bills AND your carbon How? by making sure all equipment 1. footprint Reduce your bills AND your carbon is turned off overnight. footprint by making sure all equipment 2. is Use “Reduce Reuse Recycle” to identify turned off overnight. ways to eliminate materials. 2. Use “Reduce Reusewasted Recycle” to identify ways to eliminate wasted materials. 22


to help your business to helpnet your business reach zero carbon reach net zero carbon

3. Get your staff involved. Set up a green andstaff reward suggestions 3. team Get your involved. Set up that a green result in savings. team and reward suggestions that result in savings.

Three Three to electric vehicles Switch

Switch to electric vehicles Why? The sale of new petrol and diesel cars Why? will be banned the UK from 2030. The sale of newinpetrol and diesel cars EVs have lower fuel cost per mile, will be banned in the UK from 2030. lower maintenance duemile, to fewer EVs have lower fuel costs cost per moving parts, lower road tax and are lower maintenance costs due to fewer exempt from the London congestion moving parts, lower road tax and are charge. car congestion drivers of exemptPlus fromcompany the London EVs get the added benefit of reduced charge. Plus company car drivers of benefit-in-kind tax. EVs get the added benefit of reduced benefit-in-kind tax. How? For any vehicle that travels more than How? 5,000 business per year, it isthan worth For any vehiclemiles that travels more buying or leasing an EV. 5,000 business miles per year, it is worth 1. Use the Trust’s buying or Carbon leasing an EV. Fleet Upgrade Tool to examine your for 1. Use the Carbon Trust’soptions Fleet Upgrade upgrading to EVs. Tool to examine your options for 2. Worried about charging on the go? upgrading to EVs. Find the nearest chargingon points 2. Worried about charging the go? using Zap-Map’s interactive map. Find the nearest charging points 3. See how much you could save by using Zap-Map’s interactive map. switching to EVs using the Go Ultra 3. See how much you could save by Low car taxtocalculator. switching EVs using the Go Ultra Low car tax calculator.

Four Four business travel Reduce

Reduce business and enable hometravel working and enable home working to reduce staff commuting to reduce staff commuting Why? Did you know UK carbon dioxide Why? emissions fromUK transport Did you know carbonreduced dioxide by almost 20% in 2020, in part due to by emissions from transport reduced COVID-19 lockdowns and restrictions. almost 20% in 2020, in part due to Not only does less travel reduce the COVID-19 lockdowns and restrictions. carbon footprint of your business, it Not only does less travel reduce the carbon footprint of your business, it

also improves profitability by cutting travel expensesprofitability and increasing worker also improves by cutting productivity, as less time is spent travel expenses and increasing worker travelling. Remote can reduce productivity, as lessworking time is spent premises costs as well as cut travel costs. travelling. Remote working can reduce premises costs as well as cut travel costs. How? Face-to-face meetings and days in the How? office are still importantand for productivity, Face-to-face meetings days in the but it’s important to get the balance right. office are still important for productivity, 1. Talk your staff. Findthe out their right. but it’s to important to get balance preferences for balancing remote 1. Talk to your staff. Find out their working withfor on-site working. preferences balancing remote 2. working Develop a company policy on remote with on-site working. working and business travel to remote guide 2. Develop a company policy on staff on what to expect. working and business travel to guide 3. Invest inwhat a reliable remote team staff on to expect. working tool like Microsoft Teams, 3. Invest in a reliable remote team Zoom or Slack. working tool like Microsoft Teams, Zoom or Slack.

Five Five Calculate your business

Calculate your business carbon footprint. Use carbon footprint. Use this to set targets for this to set targets for improvement improvement Why? IfWhy? you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it. Measuring your carbon will If you can’t measure it, youfootprint can’t manage tell you which business activities lead to it. Measuring your carbon footprint will the most carbon dioxide emissions and tell you which business activities lead to therefore to set realistic targets the most where carbonbest dioxide emissions and for year-on-year improvement. therefore where best to set realistic targets for year-on-year improvement. How? 1. Use the SME Carbon Footprint How? from the Carbon Trust for a 1. Calculator Use the SME Carbon Footprint quick estimate of the carbon footprint Calculator from the Carbon Trust for a of your business. quick estimate of the carbon footprint 2. To calculate a more detailed carbon of your business. footprint which includes the impact 2. To calculate a more detailed carbon of your supply chain, download the footprint which includes the impact free guide from the Carbon Trust. of your supply chain, download the 3. Contact Herts Growth Hub to find out free guide from the Carbon Trust. what support services are available. 3. Contact Herts Growth Hub to find out what support services are available.

Six Six Re-invest cost savings

Re-invest savings to further cost improve to further improve sustainability sustainability Why? Some Why?carbon cutting measures save money in the long runmeasures but require an Some carbon cutting save initial investment. to free up money in the longOne runway but require an some cash is to ring fence savings initial investment. One wayany to free up that you have made from low no-cost some cash is to ring fence anyor savings actions use themfrom to pay that youand have made lowfor ormore no-cost expensive measures. if you actions and use themFor to example, pay for more manage tomeasures. reduce your through expensive Forbills example, if you turning manageoff toequipment reduce yourovernight, bills through consider reinvesting those savings next turning off equipment overnight, year in other actions those such asavings smart heating consider reinvesting next controls, LED actions lights orsuch solarapanels. year in other smart heating controls, LED lights or solar panels. How? 1. Find out how much you spent on How? materials, waste disposal 1. energy, Find outraw how much you spent on and water the last year. energy, rawinmaterials, waste disposal 2. Take someinno-cost and water the lastactions year. like equipment after 2. switching Take someoff no-cost actions likehours or reducing switchingwaste. off equipment after hours or 3. Track yourwaste. bills to measure your savings. reducing 4. Ring-fence these savings toyour create 3. Track your bills to measure savings. own ‘gthese reen fund’ to invest in more 4. your Ring-fence savings to create carbon cutting actions. Don’t forget your own ‘green fund’ to invest in more to countcutting hiddenactions. savingsDon’t like reduced carbon forget maintenance costs. to count hidden savings like reduced maintenance costs.

Seven Seven solar photovoltaic Install

Install solar on photovoltaic (PV) panels your roof (PV) panels on your roof Why? Solar PV panels generate clean, carbon free Why? electricity whichgenerate you can clean, use on-site, store Solar PV panels carbon free in a battery to use later, or sell back to the electricity which you can use on-site, store electricity grid. In future, you even in a battery to use later, or sellmight back to the be able to sell energy to your neighbours. electricity grid. In future, you might even With a correctly-sized and properlybe able to sell energy to your neighbours. installed system, your investment should With a correctly-sized and properlypay for itself in 4-5 years. installed system, your investment should pay for itself in 4-5 years. How? 1. If you own your business premises, ask How? localyour companies quote to ask 1. several If you own businesstopremises, install solar PV panels on your several local companies to quote 2. install Checksolar if there are any grants available PV panels on your roof. helpifwith the cost contacting the 2. to Check there are anybygrants available Herts Growth Hub. to help with the cost by contacting the

3. Find out about the Smart Export which you for every 3. Guarantee, Find out about thepays Smart Export kWh of electricity that you feed into the Guarantee, which pays you for every National Grid. kWh of electricity that you feed into the


National Grid.

Eight Eight Tell your staff, customers

Tell your staff, customers and supply chain about and supply your actionschain about your actions Why? A PWC survey in 2017 found 65% of Why? people toin work a company A PWC want survey 2017for found 65% of with apeople strongwant socialtoconscience. Concern work for a company with about climate is clearly growing, a strong socialchange conscience. Concern but many people don’t know what to do. about climate change is clearly growing, Explaining what you are doing might but many people don’t know what tohelp do. you to attract new customers staff. Explaining what you are doingand might help you to attract new customers and staff. How? 1. Add an environmental policy statement How? your that listspolicy your statement main 1. to Add an website environmental environmental impacts and what you to your website that lists your main are doing to minimise them. environmental impacts and what you 2. are Keep the messages clear and simple. doing to minimise them. 3. Avoid greenwashing. Be honest 2. Keep the messages clear and simple. you’ve achieved and 3. about Avoid what greenwashing. Be honest acknowledge some changes are about what you’ve achieved and difficult and will take time to realize. acknowledge some changes are difficult and will take time to realize.

Nine Nine buy from businesses Only

Onlyare buytaking from action businesses that on that are change taking action on climate climate change Why? Reducing Why? the carbon footprint of your business a great firstfootprint step, butof what Reducingisthe carbon your about the hidden emissions locked up in business is a great first step, but what your supply chain? Using your purchasing about the hidden emissions locked up in power to incentivise otheryour businesses to your supply chain? Using purchasing reduce their own carbon footprint is one power to incentivise other businesses to of the most actions you can reduce theirpowerful own carbon footprint is one take to accelerate the transition to can a low of the most powerful actions you carbon economy. the transition to a low take to accelerate

3. If they continue to do nothing, to another with better 3. switch If they continue tosupplier do nothing, sustainability credentials and explain switch to another supplier with better why you are making the switch. sustainability credentials and explain why you are making the switch.

Ten Ten Switch to financial

Switch to financial service providers with servicepolicies providers strong onwith green strong policies on green investments investments Why? According to research by Make my Why? Money Matter, choosing greenmy pension According to research byaMake provider is up to 21 times more effective Money Matter, choosing a green pension at reducing carbon than provider is up to 21 emissions times more effective any other individual action. Banks at reducing carbon emissions thanand pension providers lend the money you any other individual action. Banks and deposit to other organisations which pension providers lend the money you could include fossil fuel companies. deposit to other organisations which Choose a bank and pension provider with could include fossil fuel companies. strong investment credentials. Chooseethical a bank and pension provider with strong ethical investment credentials. How? 1. Check whether your bank is investing How? fossilwhether fuels using thebank 1. in Check your is investing webtool. If it is, consider switching to an in fossil fuels using the ethical bank. webtool. If it is, consider switching to an 2. Tell your current pension provider to go ethical bank. using this template preparedto bygo 2. green Tell your current pension provider the Make my Money Matter campaign. green using this template prepared by 3. Sign the petition that calls oncampaign. UK the Make my Money Matter pension funds to commit to net 3. Sign the petition that calls on UKzero carbon by net zero pensionemissions funds to commit carbon emissions by 2050.

carbon economy. How? 1. Ask your suppliers what action they are How? to reduce their carbon footprint. 1. taking Ask your suppliers what action they are 2. taking If they to arereduce doing their nothing, share this list carbon footprint. with them and explain that you prefer 2. If they are doing nothing, share this list to work only with suppliers that with them and explain that you are prefer taking action on climate change. to work only with suppliers that are taking action on climate change.

Herts Growth Hub. INSPIRE



Upcoming Events

Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce are delighted to be returning to live events. We are slowly implementing more in-person events alongside our webinars, in order to continue supporting our members and non-members, and to provide vital information that businesses may need. With our members and benefit partners we have designed our events programme to cover a variety of topics:

Employment and Immigration Update

and looking ahead to 2022

Date: 04/11/21 Time: 10:00 – 11:00 Venue: Zoom Price: FREE Join us on Thursday 4th November, from 10:00-11:00am, for a webinar update on Employment and Immigration and looking ahead to 2022.

We are delighted to be joined by Rebecca Fox, Employment Partner, and Tom Brett Young, Immigration Partner at VWV, who will provide general updates on employment and immigration, as follows: Employment • Providing a general employment update • Key topical updates - latest information/news including experience returning to the office • Looking forward to 2022 - what’s on the horizon Immigration • Providing a general immigration update • Key topical updates - latest information/news including Brexit changes and free movement • Looking forward to 2022 - what’s on the horizon After the presentation there will be a Q&A when delegates are invited to ask their questions, however big or small. You can also submit a question in advance when booking your place by emailing

Speakers: • Rebecca Fox Rebecca is a Partner in the Employment team, based at VWV’s Watford office. She provides advice on all aspects of employment law including advising and drafting employment contracts and HR policies, advising on employer and employee disputes relating to unfair dismissal, including settlement agreements, and all forms of discrimination and redundancy management. • Tom Brett Young Tom is a specialist in immigration law advising on the full range of immigration issues, with a particular focus on advising employers across all sectors. Tom assists clients with sponsor licence applications, sponsorship by employers, universities and independent schools under the Worker and Student immigration categories, and visa and leave to remain applications under all immigration categories

TEN MARKETING TIPS you can use now to be 2022-ready Date: 17/11/2021 Time: 08:30-10:30 Venue: Aubrey Park Hotel, Redbourn Price: Members £15.00 +VAT Non-Members £22.00+VAT Join us on Wednesday 17th November, from 08:30-10:30am, for a breakfast event at Aubrey Park Hotel, revealing how you can make your company stand out from the crowd. 2022 is right around the corner, and businesses aiming for growth over the next 18 months need to make sure they’re ready. Your customers, like the rest of the UK, are standing up and looking around after nearly two years of uncertainty – so there’s never been a better time to ensure that your business is looking its best. That’s why OnBrand has put together a list of the top ten things you can do over the

Daniel Graham

Emma Thompson

Tom Roberts

next six weeks to make your company stand out from the crowd next year. Presented by OnBrand’s senior team Daniel Graham, Managing Director, Emma Thompson, Marketing Director, and Tom Roberts, Head of Social & Content, the event will include: • Simple website improvements your customers will love • SEO hacks to get your site ranking on Google • Making your brand work harder to drive sales • Turning engaged customers into advocates • Improving your social feeds with shareable content ... And much more!

This event is perfect for business owners, directors and marketers who want to make sure their business is ready to tackle 2022 head on. 24



For more information on any event:

01707 502180 or

November Chamber Lunch Date: 18/11/21 Time: 12:00 – 14:00 Venue: Cromwell Hotel, Stevenage Price: Members £33.00 +VAT Non-Members £43.00 +VAT

We are delighted to have been able to reinstate our popular Chamber Lunches, with the next taking place at the Cromwell Hotel, Stevenage on Thursday 18th November 2021. Join us for a delicious lunch, a chance to catch up with existing business contacts and use the opportunity to meet and network with new potential clients. We will be joined by guest speaker Chris Barnes, Assistant Director for Regeneration at Stevenage Borough Council, who will be talking about regeneration and recovery of the town. Further details to be announced. Please note, bookings for this event close on Tuesday 16th November 2021 at 10am


Don’t forget you can use your Event Voucher to attend this event. (To check if you have any remaining, please contact

Virtual Networking Opportunity Date: 23/11/21 Time: 11:00 – 12:00 Venue: Zoom Price: Members Free Non-Members £15.00 + VAT

The next Webinar Event of the series that Herts Chamber have organised, is a networking event, designed to continue supporting our members and non-members in these challenging times. Join us on Tuesday 23rd November at 11am for our final networking webinar of 2021, providing the chance to meet with a variety of different business people in an informal atmosphere, to listen and share experiences whilst working remotely. Each participant will be given the opportunity to introduce themselves and their business.

N.B. Any non-member attending this meeting who subsequently signs up for Chamber membership within one week (i.e. by 30/11/2021) will receive a full refund of the cost of attending this webinar. INSPIRE



Upcoming Events

Staff Safety: Employers’ duties in the Covid-19 era Date: 24/11/21 Time: 11:00 – 12:00 Venue: Zoom Price: Free

This webinar covers different aspects of staff safety in the Covid-19 era from an employers’ perspective. As businesses and employers continue to navigate the changes caused by the pandemic, hear from Richard Gvero and Miranda Mulligan from Longmores Solicitors on employment law considerations for staff returning to the workplace, including. managing safety concerns, testing, vaccinations, Long Covid and hybrid working.

At the beginning of the webinar there will be a brief networking session to help you get to know the speakers and other delegates. We encourage everybody to join in and switch on your cameras. After the presentation there will be a Q&A when delegates are invited to ask their questions, however big or small. You can also submit a question in advance when booking your place


Richard Gvero

Joint Senior Partner and Head of Employment Law T: 01992 305210 E: Richard specialises in employment law and regularly helps businesses and individuals with a broad spectrum of staffing issues, including company restructures and redundancy, disciplinary and grievance processes, TUPE and other employment aspects of commercial contracts and all types of employment dispute, including unfair dismissal and discrimination claims.

Miranda Mulligan Associate Solicitor specialising in Employment Law T: 01992 305212 E: Miranda is a solicitor specialising in advising both businesses and individuals on employment law. She has experience bringing and defending employment tribunal proceedings, as well as being an accredited mediator. Miranda also helps her clients with contracts of employment, consultancy agreements and settlement agreements.

Meet the Employer Could you work at Sky Studios Elstree? Want to be part of the team bringing the best new film and TV productions to Hertfordshire? Come and find out more about Sky Studios Elstree at our in person job fair, hosted by the Jobcentre Plus. Set to open in 2022, Sky Studios Elstree will house 13 sound stages and become home to a range of film and TV productions from Sky Studios and NBCUniversal. Not only that, but Sky Studios Elstree aims to be the most sustainable studio in the world. From catering and cleaning to front of house and security, it will take a cast of dozens to keep Sky Studios Elstree running smoothly. Working with our facilities partner Mitie, we’ll be hiring for multiple roles ahead of opening next year and we’re looking for local residents to come and join us.

Date: 01/12/21 Time: 12.30 – 16:00 Venue: Maxwell Park Community Centre, Borehamwood, WD6 1JJ Price: Free 26


At this time we will be focused on Facilities roles. This includes roles across Security, Catering and Cleaning (in the majority) with additional roles across Front of House, Engineering and Mailroom. There will be workstream leads from the main areas in attendance to answer questions. Find out more about Sky Studios Elstree and hear from the recruitment team at Mitie on December 1st 12.30pm - 4pm at Maxwell Park Community Centre, Borehamwood, WD6 1JJ (Note. The event has been updated from a virtual event originally proposed on December 2nd. Entry will be free to all attendees.)


For more information on any event:

01707 502180 or Date: 07/12/21 Time: 12:00 – 14:00 Venue: Tewin Bury Farm Hotel, Welwyn

Chamber Lunch

Price: Members £45.00 +VAT Non-Members £55.00 +VAT

Hertfordshire Chamber are delighted to be holding our popular Christmas Chamber Lunch, taking place at Tewin Bury Farm Hotel, Welwyn on Tuesday 7th December 2021. We are looking forward to being able to celebrate Christmas this year and enjoying a delicious lunch with friends and colleagues at this beautiful venue set in picturesque country surroundings. If you are a member of the Chamber and wish to use your complimentary voucher, please note you will be charged £12.00 + VAT to cover the cost to attend. If you would like to make use of this offer, please email

Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce AGM

Date: 07/12/21 Time: 11:30-12:00 Venue: Tewin Bury Farm Hotel, Welwyn Price: Free to Members Only

Women in Leadership

Afternoon Tea Date: 14/12/2021 Time: 12:30 – 14:30 Venue: Fanhams Hall Hotel, Ware Price: Members £39.00 +VAT Non-Members £49.00 +VAT

Join us this Christmas period for a special Women in Leadership Afternoon Tea taking place at the enchanting Fanhams Hall Hotel in Ware, on 14th December.




Wellbeing top of agenda in Hertfordshire A renowned doctor best known for presenting the award-winning Channel 4 TV show Embarrassing Bodies, Dr Dawn Harper, spoke at the Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce Wellbeing Conference on 21st October, which took place at Rothamsted Enterprises in Harpenden. Dr Dawn is a practicing GP who has worked in the NHS for more than 30 years and is passionate about encouraging businesses to look after the health and wellbeing of their staff. In her keynote interview with conference chair Richard Potter, Director of Digital Strategy at Microsoft, Dr Dawn shared her experience and research findings from her book “Live Well to 101”, advising delegates on living well to 101, which included staying active, eating fresh and seasonal produce, having a positive mindset and maintaining social interaction.

Dr Dawn also took part in a panel session alongside a number of senior staff members from a variety of industries, including: Vanessa Georgiou, Head of Reward & PX Governance, Canada Life Briege Leahy, Chief Executive, Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce

L-R: Claire Parker, Mary Sykes, Vanessa Georgiou, Richard Potter, Dr Dawn Harper, Briege Leahy, Julie New, Aggrey Lutta



Claire Parker, Senior Diversity and Inclusion Manager, Britvic Aggrey Lutta, Culture Director, CAE Technology Services Julie New, Personal Recovery Coach and Author, Changes Forever

Briege Leahy, CEO of Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce, said: “Educating employers on the benefits of looking after the mental health and wellbeing of their employees will improve overall performances in the workplace.

“This terrific conference was part of our dedicated programme of events and activities aimed at facilitating opportunities for our members and assisting them in operating profitable businesses. The presentations and exhibition covered such a range of wellbeing related topics, I personally left the event feeling very zen. Well done to everybody involved.”


Jim was joined by an expert panel of speakers to present on the topic of Workplace Health and Wellbeing, this included: Liza Armstrong, Head of Service, Hertfordshire Growth Hub on supporting business owners and employers with workplace wellbeing and resilience Jo Healey, Police Officer and Force Lead Wellbeing Champion, Hertfordshire Constabulary on the mental health support that has been introduced for all those working in Herts Constabulary, including the large number of support service teams.

Hertfordshire County Council Public Health Service were the headline sponsor of the event, with Director of Public Health, Professor Jim McManus hosting a keynote presentation: ‘Why should we care about workplace health and wellbeing?’ Professor McManus is responsible for England’s fifth largest public health system, with a portfolio of 142 work streams, including drug and alcohol treatment and care, health protection and health improvement services. His key message to businesses is that a healthy, contented workforce is more productive and less costly - and therefore it is worth investing in support services for your employees.

Maneka Kandola, Head of Workforce and Recover, Hertfordshire County Council, on workplace health and learnings Rushma Patel, Workplace Lead for Public Health, Hertfordshire County Council on the importance of workplace health and health improvement

“What a fabulously informative day I spent at the Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce Wellness Conference. I got everything out of the day that I was hoping for and more. The speakers were so informative and enlightening and the networking enabled me to meet some really interesting people. The venue was so nice! All round, a really great day. Thank you Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce!” Clare Stead, Oliiki.

“As a psychotherapist in private practice, it was encouraging to see and hear about the fantastic work being done in the workplace to support the well-being of employees across multiple sectors. The team at the Hertfordshire Chamber of commerce did an excellent job of bringing all of this together and connecting people to share experiences and best practice.” Carmel Shealy, Carmel Shealy Therapy. INSPIRE 29 29 INSPIRE


The programme included a number of Breakout Sessions which delegates could choose from. The sessions covered a variety of topics within the wellbeing arena, from the menopause to hybrid working:

v Morning Sessions: Women’s Health and Wellbeing: Menopause and Healthy Ageing, with Andrew Mooney, Head of External Affairs, Viatris, Dr Aideen Young, Centre for Ageing Better, and guests

Performance Wellbeing: What can we learn from Olympic and Paralympic Athletes? with Dawn Sanders, Founder, WinWell

Conscious Leadership Roundtable: Wellbeing, productivity and business performance, with Ruth Farenga, Founder, Conscious Leaders

v Afternoon Sessions: Healthy Hybrid Working Hub creating the heart and incentive to reconnect, with Matthew Cooper, Director of Marketing and Business Development, Woodhouse Workspace and Liese Lord, Director, The Lightbulb Tree Understanding Stress in the Workplace and your duties, with Rosey Woodhead, Head of Programme Delivery, APeopleBusiness The Battle for Balance: How to enable your people to be energised, your teams engaged and your organisation resilient, with Simon Shepard, Director, Optima Life

“A very enlightening and worthy conference. The panel speakers were inspiring and workshops very informative – it was so good to meet and listen to so many like minded professionals who are taking the right steps towards well being at work. Thank you so much to all the team at Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce.” Anne Tinker Steps2Skills, Hertfordshire County Council




Show your support for unpaid carers

Caring for someone can be both rewarding and incredibly demanding. It can take a toll on the carer’s health, finances and relationships, especially through the pandemic.

Carers in Hertfordshire is there to ensure unpaid carers living, working or caring in Hertfordshire are identified, informed and supported!

It is estimated that a quarter of adults in the UK are providing unpaid care to a relative, partner or friend. There are at least 115,000 unpaid carers in Hertfordshire.

The charity provides emotional and practical support to children and adult carers, so they don’t have to care in

isolation. Carers are also empowered to help shape local services by having their views and experiences heard.

Annie, 21, who cares for various family members and has been in touch with Carers in Hertfordshire since she was nine, said: “Carers in Hertfordshire has been a real support to me. The activities you arrange enable carers like me to try new things and develop our skills as well as provide a break from caring and an opportunity to meet other carers.”

You could help support carers by: • Making us your Charity of the Year; • Donating your skills, products or services. • Holding a fundraising event such as a bake sale or taking part in a sponsored activity e.g. a run or cycle. • Buying our Christmas Cards designed by carers. The cards are £4 for a pack of 10.

Get in touch by emailing or calling 01992 58 69 69.

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Engineering excellence


Engineering and infrastructure specialist KMG Partnership is quietly forging a strong presence in the Hertfordshire community.

KMG’s office is based in Abbots Langley, a historic village within Three Rivers district boundaries, from which it provides a wide range of professional services in the property and construction industries. Margarita Germanos, Director of Architecture at the company, says: “What’s interesting about the Three Rivers district is its geographical location and connectivity, with direct access to M25, M1 and A1. We can easily access many of our clients and consultants in the north of England and the south east. We can also serve clients in

Hertfordshire, Buckinghamshire and Bedfordshire; proximity to the capital attracts a lot of young professionals and families. “Village amenities and local shops add comfort to the charm of working in Abbots Langley. We’ve seen a lot of changes over the past 20 years, creating room for improvement and growth. “There are challenges, though. Growing the business within the district and the Hertfordshire county is an opportunity that’s still lacking. Currently all of our clients are outside Dacorum. We have one major client in the Dacorum Hemel area but we’d very much like to grow within the district.

“We’re also impacted by the issues facing our neighbouring districts, such as congestion and pollution, and the survival rate of start-up businesses is disheartening. The lack of integration between various social and race groups and a shortage of skills means that the majority of our staff must travel from afar. Reliance on cars for transport is also an issue as there are no bus links from the station to the village.” Margarita says that there are many reasons to enjoy doing business in the district. “There are key initiatives by Hertfordshire Council to revitalise and inject money into businesses and real estate development, which we certainly

believe is the right approach. However, as an architecture and engineering practice we welcome the creation of small to mediumsized network forums and other marketing opportunities where we can talk about our services and build connections with other like-minded businesses. “To survive in this day and age, we need to shift our focus to creating pathways for collaboration rather than competition. Better links to the railway station, and improving cycle routes to encourage staff to travel sustainably, will address some of the issues that impact on our business and will also benefit the environment.”

KMG partnership was formed in 1991 providing a

range of architectural and structural engineering services to private and public sector Clients. In 2017 the company became part of global engineering and environmental consultancy RSK. We operate in the commercial and industrial sectors, notable projects have been undertaken in the leisure, media, and entertainment industries. We also collaborate with other professionals on large projects providing support and expertise to their businesses. 32



Visionary COO set to drive growth at JPA

RICHARD COOKSEY believes that a great business leader should be able to set out a vision and communicate it effectively to the workforce. He has been busy doing just that since he joined JPA Workspaces as Chief Operating Officer in December 2020.


ichard says: “Last year the owners of the company set about working out where to take the business. They took the decision to bring me in at the end of last year. My key focus is to drive growth throughout the business, improve efficiency and further improve on our excellence customer service. “Since then, we’ve looked at how we can communicate more effectively, both internally and externally, and how we can remain sustainable as a business. I’ve also been keen to highlight the value of continuous improvement and embed it within our business. How do we seek new ways of doing things? How can we help our clients adopt new ways of doing things?” Not only has JPA sharpened up its business processes, it has also invested in high-tech equipment to ensure staff have the best tools at their disposal to do their jobs effectively.

“Our new customer relationship management (CRM) system means we have a better overview of client issues so we can resolve issues quicker and improve our service,” says Richard. “We also have a new telephony system which gives staff the ability to be contacted remotely. This is particularly useful if they’re away from the office on site visits. “Our new e-commerce platform makes it easier for clients to order new furniture and manage their stock. We’ve also brought in a new marketing agency to help us streamline our promotional activities so there’s plenty going on! By doing all of this, it puts the company in a far better position to be competitive and grow in the future.”

Richard is an experienced chief operating officer with a strong track record of improving efficiency, growing revenue and profit, and achieving business goals. His vast experience means that he knows the value of encouraging staff to buy into a company vision.

It’s clear that JPA is making a positive difference to local communities across Hertfordshire. This is largely due to the leadership of the management team but Richard is keen to highlight the importance of JPA’s skilled workforce.

“You’ve got to outline how it benefits them,” he says. “It can’t just be a case of company management dictating what’s going to happen. Employees have to be brought along for the ride, otherwise there’s a danger that they’ll switch off. We have a quarterly business update so staff continually understand how we’re moving the business forward and why.”

“You’re only as good as the team around you,” he says. “The team has welcomed me and their buy-in and acceptance of our ideas has been fantastic.”

Established in 1974, JPA Workspaces is an independent family business specialising in the contract sector and providing complete furniture solutions for its clients. The company provides a range of services that solve real-life furniture issues faced by clients, from planning and selection of new furniture through to repairs, maintenance, removals, storage, reconfiguration and end-of-life re-use and recycling. JPA is also renowned for its sustainable practices and won both the Green Award and Inspiring Business of the Year Award at this year’s Inspiring Herts Awards. “We were recognised in particular for our commitment to sustainability and our work during the COVID pandemic,” says Richard. “We supplied furniture to NHS hospitals and trusts and repurposed rooms to prep them for COVID. We also set up vaccination hubs.”

Our new e-commerce platform makes it easier for clients to order new furniture and manage their stock. We’ve also brought in a new marketing agency to help us streamline our promotional activities so there’s plenty going on! By doing all of this, it puts the company in a far better position to be competitive and grow in the future. INSPIRE 33 33 INSPIRE


Broxbourne - Keep the Heart In Hertfordshire


ith upcoming developments such as Brookfield Riverside, town centre improvements in Waltham Cross and the highly-anticipated Sunset Waltham Cross Studios for film, television and animation, Broxbourne is certainly a place to invest in right now. While Broxbourne boasts beautiful open spaces and thriving town centres, economic resilience and growth in a post-pandemic world is crucial to the Borough, allowing residents and businesses to flourish and ‘Keep the Heart in Hertfordshire’. Land to the west of Waltham Cross has been purchased by Blackstone real estate and Hudson Pacific Properties for a new centre for film, television and digital production. This will be the partners’ first expansion of their Sunset Studios platform outside of the United States. The 91 acre site, close to M25 junction 25, was identified in the Borough’s approved Local Plan as a strategic employment site. This development will be a significant investment for the area, creating over 4,500 permanent jobs and is expected to contribute more than £300million to the local economy,



annually. A successful open day for the new studios was held on Saturday 23 October, welcoming residents to view future plans for the site. With £5million of financial support from the Hertfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), Broxbourne Council is developing a business start-up centre on the Theobalds Business Park. The whole site will provide high quality premises suitable for a range of users, including offices, workshops and engineering facilities. The location is ideal for embryonic start-up companies, expanding the opportunities for skills development and the

creation of high value jobs in Broxbourne, tackling the shortage of local employment. The new business start-up centre provides a greater opportunity to capitalise on its location, close to the upcoming film, television and digital production studios in Waltham Cross. The new business park and training facilities within the business centre will help support local residents with the necessary skills to enable them to engage in these jobs when they become available. The entire site is a key element of the Council’s strategy for employment growth as set out in the adopted Local Plan 2018 – 2033, sitting in an important employment section of the A10, between its junction with the M25 and College Road. The centre is due for completion in early 2023. Broxbourne Council has a proven track record for this type of centre, having already developed the highly successful Ambition Broxbourne Business Centre (ABBC) incubation model in Hoddesdon. Following the Old Pond Strategy adoption, Broxbourne Council has also recently held a consultation for residents and businesses on the redesign of Grundy Park, with the proposed scheme planning to transform Grundy Park into a more diverse, multifunctional and accommodating green space.


The Old Pond Strategy, which consists of several major improvement projects, envisages the creation of a major public space around the Old Pond fountain, reached by an attractive network of pedestrian and cycle connections, whilst at the same time ensuring that the transport network continues to function for vehicular traffic. In addition to these developments, a consultation recently took place for significant plans to improve Waltham Cross town centre. Residents, visitors and businesses were invited to provide insight and voice their opinions on the upcoming improvements. The plans will modernise the look and feel of the town centre, provide better access for people walking and cycling, and make the High Street’s use much more flexible. This will include improving the look and feel of the area through high quality landscaping and street furniture, reopening the northern end of the High Street to light vehicles, creating short stay parking bays, and improving pedestrian and cycle access into the town from nearby residential areas. Successful face-to-face engagements were held in the town centre, where officers met with residents to answer queries and discuss future plans. The Council has submitted a bid to the Government’s Levelling Up Fund for this project and is awaiting the result.

The improvements will make access to the High Street easier for everyone, improve the health and wellbeing of residents and encourage economic recovery from the pandemic. This will improve local air quality and encourage physical activity, making the region a better place to live, work and visit. Councillor Steve Wortley, Cabinet Member for Economic Growth Across the Borough, an exciting key milestone has been reached for two major developments in Cheshunt, with the completion of a collaboration agreement between Hertfordshire County Council and Broxbourne Borough Council. This agreement establishes the formal partnership between the two councils to drive forward the delivery of the £400million mixed-use scheme at Brookfield Riverside and the adjacent Brookfield Garden Village, where 1,250 new homes will be built. Located at the Turnford interchange on the A10, three miles north of junction 25 of the M25, the 50-acre Brookfield Riverside site is envisaged to include up to 315,000 square feet of retail space, 250,000 sq ft for leisure,

restaurants and a cinema, 160,000 sq. ft. of offices, approximately 250 homes and 100 assisted living units, a 2,500-space car park and major improvements to public space. The development will also create 2,000 permanent jobs. The councils’ development partners are Sovereign Centros and Peveril Securities. Both sites, which spread across 330 acres in total, make up the ‘Brookfield’ development, which will benefit from an improved road infrastructure and will create a new town centre and adjoining community for the whole Borough. Planning applications for the sites are expected to be submitted early in 2022, with a public exhibition taking place beforehand.

The vision for Brookfield has never been closer to becoming a reality and the signing of the collaboration agreement is a significant milestone for this project, marking the beginning of a partnership between the two councils, enabling the project to be brought to fruition. Councillor Lewis Cocking, Leader of Broxbourne Borough Council INSPIRE


The Raw Natural Beef Co’s

Guide to The Perfect Steak

The Main Event: Choosing Your Steak Fillet

Cut from the tenderloin, fillet, or filet mignon is, in terms of steak, about as good as it gets as it is the most premium and expensive cut. It’s, therefore, best left to shine on its own with minimal accompaniment, so no heavy sauces. Simply cook it in a flat-bottomed pan with a splash of oil and then finish with thyme and garlic with a butter finish and then be sure to let it rest for half its cooking time. From £45 (pack of 4)


With BBQ season coming to end (although our fingers are crossed for a prolonged summer), steak season is an all-year round dining experience.

Rib-eye steak, also known as scotch fillet or entrecôte, comes off the rib and is ideal for fast cooking. If you’re a steak expert you’ll know the ribeye is the ‘Butcher’s Favourite’ steak. The sign of good quality ribeye is a characteristic marbling of fat that adds succulence and richness. From £17.95 (pack of 2)

Take advantage of our exclusive 15% discount for readers, using code INSPIRE15 when you spend a minimum of £30. 36 INSPIRE

At 22mm thick and a weighty 500g, our dryaged, grass-fed rump steaks are cut from the hindquarters of the animal, without external fat and are well textured with plenty of deep flavour and a meaty bite that allows them to hold a rich sauce. From £12.49 (pack of 2)

Sirloin Sirloin steak is characterised by the layer of fat that runs along its length. This gives it a rich, deep taste making it more strongly flavoured than fillet, so it takes sauces very nicely. From £16.95 (pack of 2)

Top Tip: When cooking steak many people tend to overcook it and end up disliking it due to it being chewy and tasteless, so remember, the rarer, the more tender. The Perfect Cooking Times Blue: Fry for 1 minute each side Rare: Fry for 2 minutes each side

But sometimes its hard to choose which steak to go for and how to cook it perfectly. But not to worry, here’s our guide to the ideal steak dinner.


The Raw Steak Dry Rub The best way to get the most flavour out of your steak is the dry rub, which most people tend to go lightly on and stick to the usual salt and pepper. This recipe is enough for 4-6 steaks (depending on how generous you want to be!) • • • • • •

3 tbsp Salt 3 tbsp Smoked Paprika 2 tbsp Onion Powder 2 tbsp Garlic Powder 2 tbsp Dried Oregano 1 tbsp Light Brown Sugar • 1 tbsp Ground Cumin

Medium Rare: Fry for 3 minutes each side Medium: Fry for 4 minutes each side Well Done: Fry for 5 minutes each side

We are Raw

The Raw Natural Beef Co was founded to provide you with the finest grass-fed, open range beef. We believe in traditional Uruguayan farming, which is why our cattle are raised by experience Gauchos.

to hormones, antibiotics, or gain. Our cattle are able to spend their entire lives outside, enjoying 100s of square miles of Uruguayan countryside. Raised by traditional Gauchos, the cattle drink from the fresh springs and only eat the freshest grass and pastures.

Why Grass-fed Is Better

Choose Uruguayan

The world is on a mission to eat less meat, but of a higher quality. Research shows that grass-fed beef contains a lower fat content than grain-fed a nd a better combination of hearty, healthy fatty acids such as Omega 3.

Know Your Beef

We believe it is important that you know where your beef comes from. Our beef never has any exposure

There is a greater awareness around the importance of food traceability and Uruguay has the highest traceability standards in the world. Over 80% of Uruguay’s land can be used for agriculture, and with its temperate climate and natural grasslands, it becomes the ideal location for breeding and raising cattle. We are committing to the highest food safety standards and supply chain transparency.

Tel: +44 1992 350132 Email:


The Diamond Club for Corporate Business Leaders is Herts Chamber’s newest membership offering, aimed at both public and private sector organisations with approximately 150+ employees and a vested interest in the county. We support 700 of the region’s most influential organisations to grow their knowledge, influence and connectivity. Your company will benefit from: • Premier Membership of the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) accredited network,incorporating 53 UK Chambers • Business event invitations which are tailored to specific audiences & industries: C-Suite, Conferences, Hertfordshire LEP sponsored events with the Chamber, Diversity & Inclusion, Net Zero/Sustainability, Advanced Manufacturing, Digital Marketing Training workshops, Summits, Property & Construction events, HR Forums and others. • Four vouchers to attend a Chamber Lunch, Breakfast or Summit of your choice

Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce has been representing businesses in the county since 1924. We sit at the heart of the community, working with businesses of all sizes and representing all sectors. We are the largest independent business support organisation within Hertfordshire and we are an accredited member of the national British Chambers of Commerce network. Gain insight into pressing issues, address thought leadership and build relationships at the C-suite level.

THE DIAMOND CLUB membership is dedicated to the needs and support of C-Suite Senior Leadership & Directors and includes: • Three high profile lunches in Hertfordshire per year at prestigious Hertfordshire venues • Invitation to book onto the annual golf day at a discounted rate THE DIAMOND CLUB includes: • Being part of a reputable group and playing an important role in helping the Chamber campaign to enhance the county’s business environment • Positioning your business, demonstrating a commitment to the region and enabling us to work collectively and speak as one voice • Being part of wider conversations and ensuring your business voice is heard

GET IN TOUCH As a Diamond Club Member, you benefit from working with a Business Relationship Manager as part of our experienced Membership Team. They remain your main point of contact; touch base with you at key points throughout the year; facilitate member to member introductions; and direct you to the most relevant events and opportunities. To find out more about becoming a Member of the Diamond Club please contact: Gemma Rydqvist Head of Membership Email: Mob: 07377 361609 Office: 01707 502185

• Marketing opportunities for your company, via Inspire Magazine, monthly email newsletter and 22,000+ social media followers • Lobbying Government via the BCC • Guest Speaking opportunities • Herts Chamber CEO Support and local intelligence • Quarterly Economic Survey participation and results • Invitation to participate in the highly prestigious Queen’s Awards for Enterprise • Inspiring Herts Awards sponsorship opportunities. Currently hosted at Warner Bros. Studios Tours, Leavesden • Participation in #KeeptheHeartinHertsCampaign 2021-22 & Access to online ConnectHerts portal • Events attendance with Lord Lieutenant, High Sheriff, Herts MP’s, Mayors and other key stakeholders • Discount to attend the annual BCC Conference • Access to the Members Directory • Introductions to various stakeholders • Regular correspondence informing you of current news, affairs and events • Overseas network supported introductions to 50+ overseas British Chambers of Commerce • Chamber accredited logo to use on your company collateral



Entrepreneur Foundation

Now recruiting for 2022 The Chambers of Commerce network provides support to local businesses through a range of membership benefits, such as: information, events and training and via extensive networking opportunities.

Entrepreneurs are vital to business; individuals who have a vision, can inspire others to join them on their journey and drive the success of our local and national economy.

Hertfordshire Chamber recognises this need and is seeking to identify entrepreneurs who are passionate about their ideas; about turning their concepts into reality; and who have the energy to create new successful businesses. The Entrepreneur Foundation has been designed to nurture and grow a new network of enterprising individuals who meet these criteria; offering a twoyear initiative of guidance, training and support, supplied by Founder members, by Supporters and, of course, by the Chamber itself. "It gives me great pleasure to give my wholehearted support to the Entrepreneur Foundation.

I have always believed in the importance of encouraging entrepreneurs from a very early stage of the development of their business - and what better way to minimise the risks that they take than to be supported by experienced entrepreneurs who have themselves experienced the highs and lows of starting and running their own business." Robert Voss CBE CStJ HM Lord-Lieutenant of Hertfordshire


Why Why Apply? Apply? An Entrepreneur An Entrepreneur benefit from the benefit from the

accepted into this initiative will accepted into this initiative will following: following:

Unparalleled support from the Foundation Unparalleled support from the Foundation Special access to a funded development Special access to a funded development initiative initiative Advice on funding options Advice on funding options Exclusive regular meetings with Founders Exclusive regular meetings with Founders Incomparable access to knowledge, Incomparable access to knowledge, experience and expertise experience and expertise Select opportunities to attend Seminars and Select opportunities to attend Seminars and Masterclasses Masterclasses Exceptional opportunities to network with Exceptional opportunities to network with fellow Entrepreneurs, Founders and fellow Entrepreneurs, Founders and Supporters Supporters Entrepreneur-status Chamber membership Entrepreneur-status Chamber membership Active participation in a unique two-year Active participation in a unique two-year initiative initiative Ultimately, being integral to the success of Ultimately, being integral to the success of the Hertfordshire economy the Hertfordshire economy


“I’ve found the meetings really valuable, I think having the space to verbalise our challenges is helpful as not only do I get support and advice on how to tackle them it also gives me the time to really think about the solutions available. Not always easy to do when you’re in the thick of running a business” Helen Patterson, MA, MCIPD, JHP Electrical Services

The Entrepreneur Foundation will help you get your products or services to market and The Entrepreneur Foundation will help you get your products or services to market and grow your business; boost your productivity, revenues and profitability; strengthen your grow your business; boost your productivity, revenues and profitability; strengthen your resilience and improve your competitiveness. resilience and improve your competitiveness. The support provided by this initiative will include mentoring, business growth advice and The support provided by this initiative will include mentoring, business growth advice and unrivalled networking opportunities, all designed to unlock and reinforce your business unrivalled networking opportunities, all designed to unlock and reinforce your business potential. potential.

Entrepreneur Entrepreneur

Two-year Two-year initiative initiative

Accelerate Accelerate

Brand New Brand New Opportunities Opportunities

An individual applying to participate in the Entrepreneur Foundation An individual applying to participate in the Entrepreneur Foundation should fit into the following criteria: should fit into the following criteria: Be a business owner or decision maker within a business Be a business owner or decision maker within a business Has created a business model for a product or service with an identified demand Has created a business model for a product or service with an identified demand Has taken this business to market Has taken this business to market Can rapidly scale-up their business and employ their own staff Can rapidly scale-up their business and employ their own staff

Find out more on how to apply at Find out more on how to apply at or alternatively you can contact to receive an application form or alternatively you can contact to receive an application form CREATE CREATE

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Frogmore Paper Mill

Gearing up for a bright future

As tourism in Hertfordshire makes a comeback after a damaging time in the COVID-19 pandemic, hotels, restaurants and other local attractions are gearing up for a bumper festive season. Preparations for the Christmas rush have already begun and there’s hope that the expected boost in business in December will be sustained throughout next year.



One local firm that’s looking to the future with optimism is Fairview Hotels, which runs three hotels in Hertfordshire: Ibis Stevenage, Novotel Stevenage and the Mercure Letchworth Hall Hotel in Letchworth Garden City. All three have a distinctly unique offering and are part of Fairview’s stable of 13 hotels across the UK. Letchworth Hall has 87 comfortable bedrooms and suites and is set in eight acres of pretty landscaped gardens overlooking Letchworth Golf Club. The Novotel in Stevenage is a modern four-star hotel with 102 spacious bedrooms, ideally located next to the prestigious Knebworth House estate. Meanwhile, Ibis Stevenage is conveniently located in the centre of Stevenage, just a five-minute drive from the historic Knebworth Park, a five-minute walk from Stevenage train station and a short 15-mile drive to Luton Airport. Modern and relaxing, it has 98 fully equipped rooms and its connection to The Forum Conference and Banqueting Suites makes it an ideal venue for conferences, weddings and social events.


Geraldine Mullins, Director of Commercial for Fairview Hotels, says: “All three of our Hertfordshire hotels have a fantastic offering for the corporate customer. For instance, we have banqueting facilities for up to 600 people in the Ibis and these are sometimes underused because a lot of people might not be aware of them. We can cater for awards dinners, corporate events, weddings, parties and themed corporate away days.

Following the easing of COVID restrictions, the mill was able to open in July. Sue Woolnough at Frogmore says every effort has been made to make a visit to the mill as safe as possible.

“The Ibis is opposite the train station in the town centre so we’re well connected to London and main arterial routes. Most of our corporate guests are from Europe so trade naturally dipped during the pandemic but it’s just starting to increase now. We’re confident that travel will pick up as more countries progress their COVID vaccination programmes.”

She says: “While restrictions have relaxed, we’re still operating safe distancing and keeping tour groups as small as we can. On our Thursday and first Sunday in the month drop-in tour days, if numbers swell, we add another tour guide at a staggered start time. We have hand sanitisers freely available and operate a one-way system.

Fairview has made efforts to build partnerships with culture and tourism destination operators in a bid to bring more people into Hertfordshire.

“The paper heritage we represent is based in the villages of the Gade Valley. Apsley and Nash Mills were forever changed by the invention of not only the first mechanised paper machine in the world (Fourdrinier conveyor method in 1803 at Frogmore Mill) but also the second (Cylinder Mould Machine of 1809, at Apsley Mill), an invention by John Dickinson. These small villages gave the world machine-made paper. Our local community is important to us.”

Geraldine says: “We’ve invested in partnerships with other companies both domestically and overseas and this has helped us to boost revenues and trade. For example, due to our partnership with a company in the Netherlands, we have regular groups of customers from this country who come over to Hertfordshire, which has brought a boost to our leisure trade. “During the pandemic we’ve also worked with Hertfordshire-based NHS trusts and local councils to support NHS staff. For example, doctors and nurses from the nearby Lister hospital have stayed at the Novotel Stevenage for a nominal fee, which covers our basic cleaning cost. We did this because we wanted to recognise the brilliant work that our frontline staff have carried out during the pandemic to support the general public and keep people safe.

The offer at Frogmore is broad, to say the least. Not only is it a living museum and visitor centre, with a focus on heritage and education, it also offers conferencing space, office units for rent to small businesses, location hire for film and photography, host performances and events. Whilst Frogmore still makes unique papers for the creative industries and print, it also hosts paper industry training and teambuilding days.

The Apsley Paper Trail Trust was established to preserve paper heritage and educate people about the importance of the industry. “We educate on every level,” says Sue. “We offer curriculum-linked workshops for everyone from four-year-old children to postgraduates. This includes experience of hand-making paper and a tour of the mill. One of the few working industrial sites open to visitors, we exude Victorian working life and educate people about the versatility of paper and its sustainable credentials. We cover everything from Braille and printing to science and history. Paper is a very topical and relevant subject, especially for young people.”

Marketing is always hard for a small charity but there’s a noticeable growth in awareness of our existence. We

“We’ve also worked with councils to provide accommodation for the vulnerable. We have good relationships with ambulance services and local charities too.” Another organisation with deep roots in the local community is the Frogmore Paper Mill, which celebrates the huge contribution that paper has played in shaping the world in which we live today. The mill is operated by the Apsley Paper Trail, a charitable trust founded to conserve the unique industrial heritage of this site in Hemel Hempstead. Frogmore is still a working paper mill but is also a multi-use visitor, education and community use centre.

Sue says: “Marketing is always hard for a small charity but there’s a noticeable growth in awareness of our existence. We pride ourselves on being friendly and word of mouth is by far the best marketing tool. We use social media as well as local and specialist publications to promote what we do. We’ve recently become Art Fund-registered, which associates us with national museums and galleries and provides our online ticketing.”

pride ourselves on being friendly and word of mouth is by far the best marketing tool. We use social media as well as local and specialist The children of Woolenwick Infant School, Stevenage

publications to promote what we do. INSPIRE



Chamber’s Peer Networks programme helps to ‘Connect Herts’ as two firms partner up The Chamber’s high-profile ‘Let’s Keep the Heart in Hertfordshire’ campaign led to a match made in heaven for two businesses which joined the Peer Networks programme. The programme creates diverse cohort groups of local businesses to collaboratively work through common business issues. When Strand PR’s Managing Director, Laura Pearce, volunteered her expertise in all things marketing as part of the Chamber’s Peer Networks programme, little did she know that it would lead to a blossoming working relationship with another Hertfordshire company. Peer Networks, a Hertfordshire Growth Hub service delivered by the Chamber, creates diverse cohorts of business leaders who collaboratively work through common business issues. Covering topics ranging from finance and HR to sales and marketing, the programme provides the opportunity to share experiences and improve business performance. Laura shared PR and marketing tips during the monthly calls between eight local business leaders.

It was her depth of knowledge and a flair for the creative that impressed Kevin Jones, Chief Operating Officer at Omega Commercial Solutions, who invited Laura to handle the company’s PR and digital media. Strand PR has been helping businesses communicate their key messages to target audiences since its inception in 2012, delivering PR, marketing strategies and digital campaigns for companies nationally and internationally.

Laura said. “As a local business, I’m passionate about the future of Hertfordshire, joining Peer Networks allowed me to do my bit to support other local businesses.” Kevin said: “As well as bags of experience, she brought a flexible, personalised approach to each company. It was never a case of one size fits all – Laura would tailor her advice according to the needs of each individual business.”

Kevin Jones, Chief Operating Officer at Omega Commercial Solutions

Heart in Hertfordshire’ campaign, which was launched to support the county’s economic recovery by creating connections and highlighting business opportunities for Herts-based companies. To find out more information about the Peer Networks programme, visit business-support

Omega Commercial Solutions specialises in commercial and specialist finance and, since its formation in 1992, has built one of the UK’s most experienced teams of commercial brokers. The successful partnering of Omega and Strand PR reflects the ambition behind the Chamber’s ‘Let’s Keep the


Building Business Resilience Over the past few years we’ve all become painfully aware of how quickly the business environment can change. For some businesses this has delivered a positive impact, but for many the opposite is true. EU Transition and COVID-19 have led to higher costs, supply chain disruption, and accelerated digitisation in businesses. As businesses strive to return to a pre COVID-19 sales level and/or grow, it is still important to build resilience. What does it mean to be a resilient business?

A resilient business is one that can withstand, adapt, and thrive in the face of shocks that are internal and external. It’s all about building strength within each of the business functions and developing the business to be equipped for dealing with the unknown and unidentified risks. This also involves crisis management and business continuity planning.

Resilience starts with you

Many SMEs are led by a small number of people, commonly only one business owner. What happens to the business if those people are unavailable for any length of time?



Building resilience into your organisational structure is an increasingly important part of risk management. Have a defined layer of middle management - staff who can take on critical responsibilities and service oversight (should the need arise). This provides the dual benefit of ensuring business continuity but also aids in identifying those in your team able to step up and take on key duties as your business grows.

you may not always have the resources or specialisms in-house to work through every situation or take advantage of new opportunities. By establishing new relationships and strengthening existing ones businesses can collectively share resources and knowledge. Networking and connecting with peers has also never been so important in order to gain a new perspective and share best practice.

Looking after and developing your workforce

Financial planning is essential to ensure that your business has the means to withstand any further shocks and maintain the ability to grow. Planning and budgeting for these financial needs is crucial in highlighting opportunities and risks as well as helping you understand your market better. It’s important for business owners and leaders to understand the financial position of the business and to regularly review this against plans and budgets so that any areas of concern are quickly identified and addressed.

Your workforce is the cornerstone of building resilience. Supporting employees with their personal wellbeing is just as vital as addressing their training and development needs. As your business faces new challenges so to does your employees. Creating a workplace culture with communication around mental health and physical health and facilitating access to further support will help to build a stronger workforce and ultimately a more robust business. Upskilling employees ensures your workforce continue to develop, their skills remain relevant, and that they are better equipped to meet demands and challenges.


One positive effect of the current pandemic crisis has been a renewed commitment to business partnerships. As a small or medium sized business,

Financial management


There is no doubt that the pandemic accelerated our move to adopting technology further in our businesses. Many businesses from all sectors have turned to technology to eliminate the physical barriers brought about by COVID-19 so they can continue to trade as well as bringing about business growth. This has included

communication and collaboration tools to enable a remote or hybrid workforce to operate successfully as well as many businesses moving their sales to online.

Be ready for opportunities

Getting your business in shape not only sustains it but puts you in a position to take advantage of new opportunities. These new opportunities could be arising from climate change or new market needs leading to market expansion or new/service product developments. Ensure you know your target market and its needs, and that they are aware of your products and services. Changing business environments can result in increased competition and changing needs of your customers. Review marketing activity and ensure this delivers the required impact and results. Our Growth Account Managers can help you to build up your business’ resilience as well as navigate your way to any additional support, enabling your business to focus on what really matters - getting back on track for future growth. Grow with us


What your post lockdown return to work plans? Hertsarebased Micro SME Businesses can

access NEW tailor-made support from Ashbourne • Think about your supply chain, are there any hidden suppliers and what impact does their inactivity have on your business • Most importantly think about the health and well-being of all stakeholders; your customers, suppliers and staff

4. Reduce transmission due to face-to-face meetings and maintain social distancing in meetings.

7. Keeping the workplace clean

• Frequent cleaning of: work areas, equipment, door handles and keyboards, and making sure there are adequate disposal arrangements • Clearing workspaces and removing waste and belongings from the work area at the end of a shift • Limiting or restricting use of high-touch items and equipment, for example, printers or whiteboards

• Using remote working tools/ technology to avoid in-person meetings Only necessary participants Ashbourne Insurance has introduced a NEW dedicated•advisory service should attend meetings and Ashbourne are celebrating their especially to meet the needs and of Hertfordshire should maintain 2m separation 40th yeargrowing in business demands in 2021 and take the health and wellbeing throughout based micro SME (small and medium enterprises) of their team members as a top businesses. • Avoiding sharing pens and priority. Here they share a selection other objects of their own guidelines for coming • Providing hand sanitiser in to work, leaving workhas and managing rooms RICO MESSAM, Retail Sales Advisor been withmeeting Ashbourne 8. Help everyone keep good Covid 19 risk in the workplace. hygiene through the working day. since 2015 and is now the go-to specialist, insurance 5. Maintain social distancing 1. Arrival and departure to the • Using signs and posters to build while using common areas. professional at Ashbourne to help support the growing number office awareness of good handwashing • Staggering break times to technique of small business owners independent advice about • who Staggerneed arrival and leaving times reduce pressure on break rooms • Reminders and signage to • Storage for clothes and bags; a range of insurance policies to keep them compliant and or canteens maintain personal hygiene limited to unique workspace • Using safe outside areas for breaks. standards • Individual hand sanitizer for enabling growth in 2021 and beyond. • Installing screens to protect staff • Providing hand sanitiser in each workspace in receptions or similar areas multiple locations in addition • Encouraging their a personal distancing to washrooms As businesses prepare to return offering service with customer With an increase in new business 2. Maintain social Rico is both a product champion and staff to bring own food wherever possible while people • Setting clear use andpriority. cleaning to the workplace, Herts Chamber reflected in incoming inquiries to satisfaction as my number one insurance professional with many years travel through the workplace. • Regulating use of shared facilities guidance for toilets to ensure Patron Ashbourne Insurance Ashbourne, the new micro SME support At Ashbournethey we are search market so of experience to share with local to our reduce concurrent usage kept the clean and social highlight some important items • Reducing movement by service is ideally to help: busy business owners can dedicate their business community. He offers expert distancing is achieved • Encouraging storage of personal for business ownerssuited to consider to discouraging non-essential trips • Providing more waste facilities help avoid potential claimsliability upon items your workstation valuable time to growing their business. within buildings adviceand to sites commercial SME newatand • Tradesman seeking and to more frequent rubbish returning to work, postindividuals lockdown. or less • Discouraging visitors to the Looking forward meeting many new coverage for five existing customers within the retail team. 6. Minimise the number of collection office unless necessary and local firms. Please do pop in to our Congratulations to Rico and I encourage Property residential or mixed •• Start with owners, your existing risk unnecessary visits to offices. • Provide paper towels as an deemed safe Hoddesdon office, call or me.” assessments update any small business with alternative to email hand dryers occupancy and (shops withthem flats above) • commercial Encouraging visits via remote accordingly 3. Individuals at their workstations. insurance requirements to call Rico up to three units Multi award-winning, third generation, connection/working And remember the government • Think about items removed or • Review layouts and processes • Where site visits are required, for an informal chat.” family-run guidelines Ashbourne • misplaced Small business owners with of: Insurance Hands, Faceoffers & Space. during lockdown and to allow people to work further site guidance on social a wide range of business and personal single unitthought shopsto/ offices Always take a common-sense give some machinery Rico’s offered his commitment to the apart from each other distancing and hygiene should andado ask your insurance where dormant insurance approach along with claims advisory tapeby or saying, paint to “I am absolutely • start-up Mini-fleet (fivelain vehicles orfor less) • Using floorrole delighted be before arrival provider for risk management tools an extended period of time mark areasto tobe help workers service. It is authorised and regulated by given additional responsibilities • Limiting the number of visitors Motor-trade road-risksand only to help you. Finally, think people, •• Check on the structure keep to a 2m distance the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). at any one time to to specifically premises, activities, IT, machinery integrity of the premises before • Using screen separate support small business Commenting on the new service, • Determining if schedules for supply chain. you return to work owners, For more and information call Rico on counter visitors and tradesmen, staff from property owners Peter Smits Managing Director at essential services and contractor • Don’t assume statutory controls each other and the like. I am 100% committed 01992 471001 to Ashbourne said,” I am pleased that visits can be revised to reduce More information can be found on are to be relaxed and does the • Avoiding use of hot desks interaction, for example, Rico has taken on a new rolethe within and ensure regular cleaning changing environment affect carrying out services at night Follow on twitter @AshInsServices and LinkedIn or call 01992 471001 for help or security of stafftoand workstations theintegrity retail team, dedicated dealing and sanitising • Maintaining a record of all visitors and advice. theMicro premises? including shared equipment with SME business.

Celebrating 40 years of supporting the local community Talk to a person, not a computer – we make sure we find you the right insurance every time

50 Amwell Street, Hoddesdon EN11 8UA 01992 471001 • INSPIRE



Businesses in Hertfordshire will soon be able to use the Ware Recycling Centre to deposit business waste in a new drop off service launching this autumn paperwork, weighing in and unloading. Businesses can book online to deliver waste and recycling materials between 10am and 5.30pm Monday to Friday. The site can be accessed via a newly created internal road to keep centre users off the main road. The facility also features a designated area for the removal of full containers so disruption during opening hours is minimised.

Following a survey of businesses over summer 2021, demand for such a service was witnessed with businesses in the engineering and construction trades especially receptive to an alternative to skip hire or commercial recycling centres. All businesses will be permitted to use the service, including small and medium sized enterprises, landlords, retailers, representatives of the business and construction industry and any other organisations wishing to dispose of their waste. Survey responses confirmed that, as expected, cost is a key consideration when choosing a disposal route. Time taken to dispose, location and ability to dispose of different waste types at the same time were also important considerations. The new service offers a clear pricing structure, with costs available to see at booking. The research undertaken in planning the new scheme shows that costs are comparable to other councils who offer a similar service, and when compared to private companies the service offers a highly competitive price for many materials. The online booking service enables businesses to choose a 30 minute booking slot, which allows for booking in upon arrival,

The service will see nine different material types accepted for recycling, covering wood, hardcore, clean cardboard, scrap metal / ferrous metal, green garden waste, rigid plastic, glass, paper and plasterboard. General waste will be accepted for disposal with companies asked to note this excludes mattresses and hardcore. Each waste type will be weighed in separately, with multiple waste types requiring the weighbridge to be used to determine the weight for each waste type. A quicker ‘mixed load’ option will be available for those wishing to use the weighbridge just once. The service sets a 20kg minimum weight limit, although smaller tonnages will be accepted and charged as if it is a 20kg load. Please note a vehicle restriction of 3.5 tonnes maximum weight applies.

Hertfordshire County Council are launching this new service at the Ware ‘supersite’ in Westmill Road, SG12 0EL following the opening of the newly refurbished and extended site in October 2020. The site is the first of its kind in Hertfordshire, measuring in at four times larger than its predecessor and designed to handle up to 300,000 visits of up to 10,000 tonnes of waste a year. With the council committed to sustainability, the construction saw more than 1,500 new trees planted at a nearby site, and a new wildflower meadow created, to offset the environmental impact of the construction work. The council is working in partnership with Biffa Waste Services, who manage the neighbouring landfill site to use extracted methane gas to power the electrical generators at the Recycling Centre. This renewable source of electricity means a significantly reduced reliance on the use of fossil fuels and enables the recycling centre to be powered by waste produced by Hertfordshire’s residents and businesses. Featuring a split-level design, the facility allows the majority of waste to be deposited without the need for lifting or carrying up steps. There are 38 spaces available for parking and unloading, and businesses will be requested to deposit their material in the relevant household containers after weighting in, which will allow the tonnages to be allocated to the relevant material type for accurate data management. The centre also contains a purpose-built Reuse Centre offering residents the opportunity to deposit, browse and buy reusable items that would have otherwise been thrown away.

Full details are provided on the website at including price per material, booking fee and how to book. Card payment will be taken onsite (cash is not accepted). Registered waste carriers will be requested to show their license and all customers will be asked to complete a waste transfer note. Further details about managing and transporting your waste can be seen here: managing-your-waste-an-overview. Those using a commercial vehicle for disposal or recycling of household waste can continue to do so for free with a valid van permit. These can be applied for online at

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Quarterly Economic Survey Q3: Despite Fragile

The BCC’s Quarterly Economic Survey (QES) – the UK’s largest independent survey of business sentiment and a leading indicator of UK GDP growth – has shown that while businesses continue to recover from the deepest recession on record, persistent weakness in several indicators highlight concerns over the strength of the recovery. The survey of over 5,700 firms showed that some indicators, such as domestic sales and orders improved in Q3. However, it also revealed stagnation in the proportion of firms reporting improved cashflow and increased investment. Worryingly, firms’ expectations of price increases and fears about inflation are hitting record levels.

33% overall reported increased cash flow in Q3 (compared to 32% in Q2), much lower than the percentage of firms who reported a rise in domestic sales (47%). One in five firms (22%) reporting a decrease in their cash flow, while 44% reported no change. Given the dramatic worsening of cash flow at the onset of the pandemic in Q2 2020, the failure to see any significant increases in this metric is a cause for concern. Micro (28%) and small (20%) businesses were also more likely than medium (17%) or large (12%) businesses to report a decrease in cash flow in the quarter.


27% of firms overall reported an increase in investment in Q3 (unchanged from Q2), far lower than the percentage of firms who reported a rise in domestic sales (47%). The failure to see any positive upward movement in investment is another troubling warning sign for longer term recovery. Meanwhile, 13% of firms reported a decrease in investment in Q3, and a further 59% said they had seen no change.

• Inflation expectations hit record highs as 62% of prices to rise in the next three months QUARTERLY ECONOMIC SURVEY Q3 2021 expect their BRITISHmanufacturers CHAMBERS OF COMMERCE

• One in five firms reported a decrease in cashflow, with a further two fifths seeing no improvement

The British Chambers of Commerce’s Quarterly Economic Survey is the UK’s largest independent survey of business sentiment and a leading indicator of UK GDP growth. The most recent results show that while businesses continue to recover from the deepest recession on record, persistent weakness in several indicators highlight concerns over the strength of the recovery, with one in five firms reporting a decrease in cash flow, with a further two fifths seeing no improvement.

• Investment lagging the wider recovery as 13% reported a decrease and 59% no change

Our latest data indicate only a modest uptick in underlying economic conditions in the third quarter as the boost from the end of restrictions was increasingly stymied by mounting headwinds. The key services sector recorded the strongest improvements in the quarter as consumer-focused firms, including hotels and hospitality, received the biggest boost from the easing of social distancing. Manufacturing firms saw more limited gains as increasingly acute supply chain disruption limited their ability to fulfil orders and meet customer demand. The underwhelming uptick in investment intentions means that it may be weak point of the recovery because it would weaken our ability to boost productivity and lift the UK’s long-term growth trajectory.

• Over half (52%) of respondents cited inflation as an increased cause of concern

Suren Thiru Head of Economics, British Chambers of Commerce


Positive balance (+) = growth | Negative balance (-) = contraction


Domestic Sales

0% +25%


70% +25%


50% -50%




UK GDP growth vs. QES balance of firms reporting increased domestic sales 2.0% 2008 recession

EU ref




+75% -75%

0.5% 0.0%




-30% -50% +100%


...of manufacturers reported increased domestic sales in Q3 2021, unchanged from Q2 2021



...of service firms reported increased domestic sales in Q3 2021, up from +20% in Q2 2021



GDP Growth

-1.5% -2.0%

'12 '13 '14 '15 '16 '17 '18 '19 '20 '21

Service Sector QES

Manufacturing QES

Balance of firms reporting increased export sales +25%


-1.0% GDP growth in Q2 2020: -19.5% Q2 2021: 4.8%

QES % Balance '07 '08 '09 '10 '11

0% +25%

1.5% 1.0%

30% 10%


Export Sales

Cash Flow

• Business activity improving as more firms report increased domestic sales (47%), the highest since ISSN 2398-4406 the start of the crisis BCC ECONOMICS

40% 20%









+75% -75%

-20% +75%

-40% -60%



...of manufacturers reported increased export sales in Q3 2021, down from +8% in Q2 2021



...of service firms reported increased export sales in Q3 2021, up from -7% in Q2 2021


Export Orders

47% of respondents overall reported increased domestic sales in Q3 (compared to 44% in Q2), while 16% reported a decrease (20% in Q2). In the services sector, the balance of firms reporting increased domestic sales increased to +31% in Q3, the highest since Q4 2015 and up from +20% in Q2. The balance of services firms reporting increased domestic orders rose to +27 in Q3, the highest since Q3 2015 and up from +17% in Q2. In the manufacturing sector, the balance of firms reporting increased domestic sales was +28% in Q3, unchanged from Q2. The balance of manufacturers reporting increased domestic orders eased slightly to +22 in Q3, from +25% in Q2 Firms in the hospitality sector were most likely to have seen increased domestic sales as restrictions eased, with nearly two thirds (63%) reporting as much. This was followed by transport/distribution, and marketing/media, both on 50%.

Recovery, Anaemic Cash Flow and Investment with Record Inflationary Pressures Places Economy Under Strain

Business activity



'16 '17 '18 '19 '20 Service Sector QES


Balance of firms reporting increased export orders +25%


QES % Balance '07 '08 '09 '10 '11 '12 '13 '14 Manufacturing Sector QES

0% +25%



40% 20%









+75% -75%

-20% +75%

-40% -60%



...of manufacturers reported increased export orders in Q3 2021, down from +11% in Q2 2021


Inflationary Pressures


...of service firms reported increased export orders in Q3 2021, up from -7% in Q2 2021

47% reported overall expect their prices to increase over the next three months (42% in Q2) with just 2% expecting prices to decrease (unchanged from Q2). In the services sector, the balance of firms reporting expecting to increase their prices rose to +38% in Q3, up from +31% in Q1, the highest level since Q3 2008. In the manufacturing sector, the balance of firms expecting to increase their prices rose to +60% in Q3, up from +57% in Q2. Becoming the new highest level in the history of the QES dataset starting in 1989. 52% of respondents cited inflation as an increased cause of concern


QES % Balance '07 '08 '09 '10 '11 '12 '13 '14 Manufacturing Sector QES


'16 '17 '18 '19 '20 Service Sector QES


(40% in Q2). 64% for manufacturers | @britishchambers (46% in Q2) and 51% for service sector firms (40% in Q2), both of these sectoral figures are the highest seen since the metric was first collected in Q4 2009. Around nine in ten (88%) manufacturers cite raw materials costs as the driver of price increases. In contrast, just one in five (22%) manufacturers cite pay settlements as a driver of price increases, still below its pre-pandemic level. Within the survey, firms provided details of the wide range of inflationary pressures on their business, such as 150% increases to some steel products, and 600% increases in shipping containers

Suren Thiru, Head of Economics at the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC), said: “Our latest data indicates a disappointingly modest uptick in economic activity in the third quarter as the boost from the end of restrictions was increasingly stymied by supply and staff shortages and rising cost pressures. “The key services sector recorded the strongest improvements as consumerfocused firms, including hotels and hospitality, received the biggest boost from the easing of social distancing restrictions. Manufacturers saw more limited gains as increasingly severe supply chain disruption stifled their ability to fulfil orders and meet customer demand. “The results point to an underwhelming three months for business investment as the damage done to firms’ cash flow by the pandemic and growing concerns over a more burdensome tax regime squeezed investment intentions. “Acute supply shortages and rising raw material costs drove an historic surge in inflationary pressures in the third quarter. However, with little evidence in our figures that higher inflation is stoking a broad-based escalation in pay settlements, the MPC should have enough leeway to keep interest rates steady over the medium term. “Though the UK economy remains on track for moderate growth in the third quarter, with staff and supply shortages increasingly having a suffocating effect on economic activity and price pressures intensifying, a spell of stagflation maybe inevitable.” Responding to the findings, Director General of the British Chambers of Commerce Shevaun Haviland, said:“The supply chain crisis, alongside wider labour shortages and spiralling price rises, is clearly starting to drag on our economic recovery from Covid-19. “Businesses are being battered by a deluge of up-front cost pressures, including huge increases in the prices of key raw materials and shipping, as well as now facing a rise in National Insurance Contributions. At the same time, they are losing out on opportunities for growth due to the labour shortages, despite many already raising wages and offering training. “The focus must now be on creating the best possible environment for businesses to grow and thrive. By supporting firms through the difficult months ahead they can begin to generate wealth, create jobs and support communities. That is by far the best way to sustainably deliver the tax revenue the government needs to support public services and the wider economy. “That’s why I am calling on the government to place a moratorium on all policy measures that increase business costs for the remainder of this parliament and to finally deliver fundamental reform of our broken business rates system. The Prime Minister must take action now, with plans not plaudits, or businesses across the country, and our wider economic recovery could falter under the weight of these pressures.”




Herts digital agency nominated KGK Genix Leading for six industry awards A Hertfordshire-based PR and digital marketing shortlisted company has been shortlisted for six industry awards. in Creative Retail Awards Nominated in ‘Seasonal or Temporary Display’

KGK Genix have been shortlisted in the Creative Retail Awards 2021. The Creative Retail Awards recognise and reward excellence in retail, spanning a number of disciplines, including store design, Visual Merchandising, inspired technology, Omni-channel innovations, bar and restaurant design, shopfitting and much more and are judged by a panel of industry leaders and experts. KGK Genix have been nominated in the ’Seasonal or Temporary Display’ category for the flagship Holiday campaign for GAP. “We’re really excited to be shortlisted in the Creative Retail Awards! After a challenging year for retail and the industry overall, this is a great boost for the KGK team and we can’t wait until the celebration in October.” says Graham Pitts, Operations Director at KGK Genix. The Creative Retail Award winners will be announced on 14th October 2021 at a prestigious awards celebration held in London. More about the GAP project: About KGK Genix: KGK Genix is a multidisciplinary agency providing creative, print, project management and installation solutions for some of the world’s biggest brands and retailers. KGK Genix group is the result of a merger between two well-established companies within our sector: KGK and Genix. The group employs over 90 people, based at four sites in Central London, Hertfordshire, and Essex.

Strand PR is a finalist in six categories of The Drum Recommends Awards for Digital 2021 and will be up against agencies from across the country in the prestigious competition. The categories which Strand PR is nominated in include ‘client service’, ‘digital content strategy and creation’, ‘creativity and innovation’, ‘service delivery’, ‘social’ and ‘strategic thinking’. This year, the awards will be hosted virtually on Friday, October 15 2021, from 4pm, with the winners being determined through ratings provided by customers of each shortlisted agency. The Drum Recommends Awards for Digital, judged by senior bodies from brands such as HP, Walt Disney, Pinterest and Gymshark, celebrate teams that specialise in digital services and campaigns

across the marketing and communications industry. Managing Director of Strand PR Laura Pearce said: “We go above and beyond to deliver exceptional service for our clients, and while we do this to deliver results, rather than for recognition, we’re delighted to be nominated in not just one, but six categories. “We’re a dynamic and flexible team and when we start working with new clients, we completely immerse ourselves in their business, understand how they work and what they want to achieve. I think this thorough approach together with our strong work ethic, our creative talents and the successes we have achieved for clients is why we have been nominated.” Established in 2012 by Laura Pearce and based just outside Royston, Strand PR is a flexible

and dynamic PR, communications and digital marketing agency that invests its time helping businesses communicate key messages to their target audience in the right way in order to deliver better results. Laura has single-handedly grown the business from scratch, now working with the likes of national challenger banks and international prototyping firms. One client said: “Laura is a superb professional, full of great ideas for developing our strategic planning with regard to raising our profile and making us much more widely known and highly regarded within our industry.”

A revolutionary approach to web

development launched in Hertfordshire Hertford-based Cariad Marketing has launched a new, affordable website services aimed at start-ups, micro businesses and sole traders. Cariad Web Design combines quick and easy template designs with the expertise and TLC that goes into bespoke websites using the WordPress platform, providing businesses across Hertfordshire with professionally built, fast websites from an award-winning digital marketing company. The websites have a choice of pricing options, but could be as little as £50 a month. With the added bonus that they could be up and running in as little as ten days. The new websites will make any business look great on the outside, but they also have a lot going on behind the scenes to make the brand more visible to search engine bots, which will in turn make it more visible to potential customers. There are also a range of add-on services available that will ensure the websites work even harder. These add-ons can be included in the initial order, or they can be added when funds allow once the

website is up and running and bringing in new business. Cariad Web Design is the brainchild of Hertford-based Cariad Marketing. Cariad’s Head of Creative, James Koussertari, explains the rationale behind Cariad Web Design: “Having a professionally built, fully responsive and fast website enables even the smallest brands to rise above the competition online and get noticed by the Google search bots. Getting higher up the organic search results will lead to more visitors to your website, with a consequent increase in business. But if you’re a start-up, small business or sole trader, tight budgets usually mean there’s a need to increase profits long before you can raise the budget for a professional bespoke website. But without a great website, it’s harder to attract new business and increase profits, putting you in a catch-22 situation. We believe we’ve hit upon the perfect

compromise with Cariad Web Design’s ‘bespoke templates’.” James and his team have created a range of templates (and will continue to add new designs) that offer low-cost websites that are fast, functional and flexible. These will give small brands all the advantages of a large bespoke website that is fast, safe and optimised to attract new prospects quickly and efficiently, but at a price they can comfortably afford. Cariad’s MD Justine Perry added that Cariad Web Design model is an accumulation of web development expertise building bespoke WordPress websites: “Cariad Web Design is an exceptional value for money website package, into which we have poured over 12 years’ experience building and managing websites for small businesses in Hertfordshire. These are exciting times ahead for the Cariad brand and I’m extremely proud of the team.”

A professional website up and running within a fortnight

The additional advantage of Cariad Web Design’s new template system is the speed at which it’s possible for a business to launch its new website - in as little as 10 days! This means small business owners can start getting their new website working for them more quickly, significantly improving their online presence at the same time as increasing brand recognition and giving a great return on investment.

We are pleased to offer a 10% discount on Cariad Web Design packages for all HCC members: For monthly packages: CWDMONTHLY10 For annual packages: CWDANNUAL10




What might we learn from

elite athlete wellbeing?

As the dust settles on the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games it provides an opportunity to reflect on what we might learn from athlete wellbeing.

Dawn Sanders WinWell Ltd Having worked in elite sport for the last twenty years I have historically felt that talking openly about mental health and wellbeing was seen as a weakness. This Games has been different where strong, courageous athletes like Simone Biles have openly said they need to prioritise their mental health for their own safety and the needs of the team. I have learnt the impact that change, uncertainty, purpose, and identity can have on wellbeing. If you solely base your identity on what you do for a living what happens when it’s not there anymore? Understanding change, exploring values

and strengths and having an individualised self-care plan can often get athletes through those moments of transition to embrace the next chapter in their life. Athletes have taught me that wellbeing isn’t just about sleep, eating the right things, gym membership and social events. Athletes have often mastered these elements of life and still have wellbeing needs. What they want is the opportunity to speak and be heard; to a wellbeing coach, to a line manager, to someone who can show they care. To feel safe in environments where people can openly share about their whole life,

not just them as a performer and to have some intentional, individualised wellbeing conversations. This is now something I have learnt applies to the needs and wants of us all in work, in businesses and organisations. To create sustainable wellbeing staff want leaders and managers to show they care for them as people, to listen and to understand about their wellbeing needs to enable them to thrive in work and life.

To find out more go to or

Seven days to double your donation for free to help young people in need this Christmas! With youth homelessness sadly increasing, our services are needed now more than ever.

The winter months are some of the most difficult for young homeless people and those facing homelessness. Being homeless is awful for anyone, but for a young person it can be a tragedy that sets a pattern for the rest of their lives, which is why it is our mission to prevent homelessness. The Big Give Christmas Challenge gives people the opportunity to double their donation for free. For one week only, from Tuesday 30th November to midday on 7th December, all donations made through The Big Give website will be doubled.

This means a £10 donation to hyh will be doubled by The Big Give to £20 at no cost to the donator. One donation, twice the impact. We have set ourselves an ambitious target of £20,000 and we need your support to reach it. And if we manage to exceed our target we will also qualify for The Christmas Challenge Awards which means we could be in with a chance of winning a monetary prize, and an amazing opportunity to support more young vulnerable people. We can prevent homelessness in Hertfordshire together!




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u Rosy Holt Celebrant Independent Celebrant Email: Web: Tel: 01707 271466 Address: 22 Hillcrest Hatfield Hertfordshire AL10 8HG

u Snookes Legal Services Provider of mediation services for civil and commercial disputes Web:

u Springwell Business Coaching Business Growth, Leadership & Team Development Expert Twitter: MartinPurvis1 Email: Web: Tel: 01582 620651 Address: Suite 8, Brewmaster House The Maltings St Albans Hertfordshire AL1 3HT

u Wildly Social Media Specialist in Facebook and Instagram advertising Web:

u Mace Developments Limited

u Wombies Kitchen

Property Development / Property Consultancy Twitter: MaceGroup Web: Tel: 020 3522 3000 Address: 155 Moorgate London EC2M 6XB

Catering and Allergy Specialist Email: Web: Tel: 07918 084301 Address: 24 Graham Avenue Broxbourne Hertfordshire EN10 7DP

u MAPIT Advisory Consultancy Email: Tel: 07585 960658 Address: 3A New Street Shefford Bedfordshire SG17 5BW

u z2 Accountants Twitter: Z2_Group Email: Web: Tel: 01707 903222 Address: Riverdale House 21a High Street Wheathampstead Hertfordshire AL4 8BB INSPIRE



Grow your business with Experian Business Express

Credit Check your customers and suppliers with Experian Business Express credit reports. Herts Chamber members are entitled to a Free Trial and 20% discount on the product subscription. Experian Business Express has one of the most predictive scoring models in the industry, which lets you easily determine the creditworthiness of your business’s customers and suppliers. Based on Experian’s scoring model, Business Express can help you predict business credit risks and failures within the next 12 months. Once set up, you’ll have immediate access to all the data you need to make the right decisions for your business. Our commercial credit reports provide the most complete and in-depth analysis of a business’ credit information. Features include • Business information including credit scores and limits • 3 years account summary • CCJ information over the last 6 years • Basic monitoring service • Non limited business reports • Parent and ultimate holding companies • Directors and links to other business interests including shareholders • 3 years’ worth of full financial information • Payment data for Limited and Non-Limited businesses • Ownership - Group structure, shareholders & director search facility

One Off Company Credit Checks

Instantly credit check a UK business online. Herts Chamber members are entitled to 50% discount on one off credit checks. Experian business credit reports enable you to instantly check a company online, allowing you to make quick and informed

decisions about potential customers and suppliers. Single business credit reports give you quick and simple access to online business reports and directors information. Know who you’re dealing with • By checking your customers • By checking the people behind a business • By checking your suppliers Get paid on time • By knowing if a company is financially stable • By seeing a company’s credit rating • By finding out how quickly a business pays its invoices

My Business Profile

See how banks & suppliers view your Limited Company credit score with My Business Profile from Experian. Includes a 90-day free trial followed by an ongoing fee of £12.50 + Vat per month (50% discount) for continued usage. Cancel at any time. Check and improve your business credit score Being denied company credit can be bad news for your business, especially if you need finance to grow. If your business has been refused credit or struggled to secure new finance, you’ll know how that can impact your plans. But is relying on your personal finances really the answer? With My Business Profile, you get full visibility of your business credit profile, enabling you to understand what’s affecting your company credit score and preventing you from being able to obtain that all important company finance. How does My Business Profile help? • Find out the top 5 factors influencing your score. Give yourself the best chance when applying for business credit, by working on the areas that are affecting your score • See what lenders see when making credit decisions about your business. This is one of the only reports of its type to include commercial CAIS data, making it the

most accurate and fully comprehensive view of your own business credit profile • Automatic Alerts. Receive alerts about significant changes, so you can act quickly to reduce any negative impacts to your score • Customer Support. On-going advice and support to help make your business credit score the best it can be *£12.50 + Vat after free trial. You may cancel online during your trial free of charge.

Experian B2B Prospector

Experian B2B Prospector helps you find new customers fast. Your small business marketing relies on up-to-date business marketing data. Knowing that your data is segmented and targeted to your most profitable business prospects means you can lower your marketing costs and conduct your sales campaigns with confidence. Herts Chamber members are entitled to a 50% off any purchases made. Choose exactly the kind of businesses you’re looking for, review them before you buy and start contacting them immediately – by email, phone or through the post. Build a list of your ideal prospects with Experian B2B Prospector • Over 5.3 million UK businesses with names, postal addresses, phone numbers and e-mail addresses • Segment, target and tailor your list by geography, business type, turnover, number of employees and many more • Set a specific number of contacts to suit your budget. • Free Data Validator to ensure you fulfil your GDPR obligations by checking data you have purchased from Experian’s B2B Prospector Enhance data you have by adding up to 60 data variables to help you get better insight and help segment your existing portfolio. Also provides a FREE data profile report.

Making it personal with meaningful employee health and wellbeing Driving employee engagement with health and wellbeing initiatives requires more than a one-size-fits-all approach. Small businesses that take the time to attune to their employees’ needs from the outset are a step ahead in fostering an engaged and positive workforce. There is little doubt that healthy and engaged employees are a significant driver of business success. When staff feel appreciated and there is genuine interest from the top, the workforce will flourish. Employers should create a culture of openness and honesty that ensures

health and wellbeing initiatives genuinely help employees. Yet, traditionally, many employers have fallen into the trap of making generalised assumptions about what their people need or want. AXA Health encourages businesses to take a proactive approach to safeguarding each employee’s physical and psychological health. Building and sustaining a positive, supportive workplace culture, where employees are encouraged to lead healthy, active lives and have a good work-life balance, is a good place to start. As the first step in personalisation, business owners should ask their employees what they want. They can canvass views through surveys, focus groups or simply informal discussions, helping to gain a reliable understanding

of what employees really need in health and wellbeing benefits.

There is a growing trend towards the provision of employee health and wellbeing support that is more holistic, and there are positive steps that can be taken at no cost whatsoever. Companies can, for example, highlight and endorse public health initiatives such as National Stress Awareness Day or National Mental Health Awareness Week. Promoting these and other initiatives reinforces that an employer genuinely cares about the wellbeing of each staff member and contributes to an atmosphere of openness concerning a full range of health and wellness-related issues. A healthcare plan from AXA Health supports your people when they need it most, helping them manage problems

before they get worse and keeping your business working.

As a Chamber member, if you take out small business healthcare cover, you’ll also get: • 50% off your Chamber of Commerce membership for three years.¹ • Up to 40% off monthly individual membership fees at Nuffield Health fitness and wellbeing centres for your employees.² To find out more about how you can support your employees with business healthcare cover call 0800 389 7413 and mention that you’re a Chamber member. As with all insurance plans, terms and conditions apply.

¹Direct new customers only. 50% off up to a value of £125 per employee covered, per year, for up to three years. See website for more: ²Discount applies to Nuffield Health’s fitness & wellbeing gym monthly individual membership only. You must be the lead member on a current AXA Health private healthcare plan or lead member on a company plan or scheme to be eligible for a 40% discount. All AXA Health client’s employees, who aren’t covered by an AXA Health private healthcare scheme, plus the spouse or partner of both audiences are eligible for a 20% discount. You must provide proof of membership and/or employer. The spouse or partner must join at the same time or after to be eligible. Access will be to your home club (the one you select on joining) plus many more clubs around the country, depending on your home club. See You must use your home site at least 50% of the time. Existing members of Nuffield Health who transfer to either of the AXA Health discounts and any other members who join after 30/11/2021 will incur a £35 administration fee charged by Nuffield Health. Further terms and conditions apply visit British Chambers of Commerce Limited is an introducer appointed representative of AXA PPP healthcare Limited. AXA Health is a trading name of AXA PPP healthcare Limited, authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority.The private healthcare insurance plans are underwritten by AXA PPP healthcare Limited.Registered office: 20 Gracechurch Street, London EC3V 0BG. Registered in England and Wales number 3148119. Write to us at: AXA Health, Phillips House, Crescent Road, Tunbridge Wells, Kent TN1 2PL. For information about AXA Health, visit




Helloface achieve CE Marking for their Transparent Medical Face Mask

After many months of research, trialling and updates, we are extremely proud and excited to announce that our Transparent Medical Face Mask is CE/UKCA marked. Widely known as an alternative to Type IIR face masks, the Helloface Transparent Medical Face Mask has achieved CE/UKCA marking against the new specification. As well as passing the pre-compliance testing, the clear face mask material also has anti-microbial elements and certified anti-fog.

“Gaining the CE Mark is the result of our continual determination to design and manufacture a scalable, safe and effective face mask that will benefit medical professionals, care workers and those in the hospitality, tourism and construction workforce with transparent protection” says Dean Ezekiel, Managing Director.

With improved clarity and flexibility, the design enables the user to wear the mask for long periods of time and others to clearly identify emotions and non-verbal, visual information.

Our innovative face mask enables full facial recognition in order to avoid miscommunication errors that many have experienced when wearing an opaque face mask.

This innovative product breaks the boundaries of transparent face masks by becoming one of the first of its kind to achieve CE/UKCA marking.

In addition, the sustainable materials used are recyclable and therefore do not add to the growing PPE wastage, providing an environmentally friendly alternative to masks currently available.

“With the CE Mark, we are thrilled to be able to offer our Transparent Medical Face Mask across the UK and EU to hospitals, dentists, GPs and whoever will benefit from the unique transparency of the product”.

To find out more about our CE marked Transparent Medical Face Mask, you can get in touch with us on 0203 905 1888 or send us an email to

We will soon be running a crowdfunding campaign to support the expected large demand for our face masks. By signing up via, you will be the first to know when our exclusive backer-only perks go live.

Heart Hertfordshire have partnered with Taylor Walton Solicitors for the 2022 ‘Hertfordshire Hero Awards’

This exciting initiative provides listeners with an opportunity to celebrate those who really make a difference. The awards will recognise heroes and hear stories about the nominees who make a difference in their local community. Debbie Chadwick, Station Director, Heart Hertfordshire said: “It’s been a tough couple of years, and I’m delighted we are back to recognise the amazing people and unsung heroes across Hertfordshire once again. It’s with great pleasure that we are back at Sopwell House and I’m really looking forward to a heartwarming and inspiring night with all the finalists to celebrate how incredible they are.”

There are 10 categories including, ‘NHS Hero’, ‘Green Initiative’ and ‘Community Award’. Nominations are free and finalists will be invited to Sopwell House in St Albans for an exciting awards ceremony on Friday 21st January 2022 for an evening of spectacular food, awards and entertainment. Please Note all 10 Categories below: • Headline Sponsor Taylor Walton Solicitors • Child of Courage Award sponsored by Milcars Mazda

• Green Initiative Award sponsored by Heasell • Community Award sponsored by Croft Communications • Fundraiser Award sponsored by Willmot Dixon • Young Achiever Award sponsored by Affinity Water • Parent Award sponsored by Epson UK • NHS Hero Award sponsored by Camelot • Carer Award sponsored by B&M Care • Teacher Award sponsored by Atria

Making a positive impact The focus of Helping Herts is to raise money for core causes in Hertfordshire and celebrate all that our county has to offer. Our current chosen charities are local Hospices and Citizens Advice. These charities are under significant pressure and have been supporting Hertfordshire under extremely challenging circumstances. Through fun activities, events, and fundraisers we will support them to continue to make a positive impact on our local communities. How can your business get involved?

Sponsorship Gold - £1,000 • Branding on the Helping Herts home page • Branding on all associated Helping Herts activities • A social media post across all channels • A paragraph in our weekly email newsletter

Silver - £500 • A social media post across all channels Or... Set up a fun team-building fundraising challenge. The Big Herts 10 offers inspiration for people to create a challenge linked to the number 10, which is the number of districts in Herts. Teams can create their own fundraisers directly on the Helping Herts website. For every fundraiser set up an initial £100 will be added to the overall campaign and once a £500 target is reached a further £250 will be added by a major donor. We are always happy to chat with you about how you can get involved:

Email: Tel: 01279 881607 Website: Instagram: @helpingherts Facebook: @helpingherts

Nominations open at 16.00 on Monday 11th October and close at Midnight on Friday 3rd December 2021 For further information contact Lauren Watt – Or Tom Williams – - 07721 213875




Excellence in International Trade By John Woodruffe Head of International Trade and Policy

Firstly, many many congratulations to all the winners of the Inspiring Herts Awards 2021 and especially (from an Export viewpoint!) to Silent Sentinel, winners of the Export Business of the Year Award and Business of the Year Small to Medium. Also, bouquets to some of our other exporters: Kane International, for winning Business of the Year Medium to Large and Excellence in Customer Commitment and last, but not least, Chapman Ventilation for being awarded Outstanding Contribution to Business. Planning is already under way for next year’s awards and the export category is being renamed, ‘Excellence in International Trade’. This award recognises the strength of Britain’s exporters. More details can be found on the Chamber website and there will be an official launch in January. I do strongly encourage you to consider putting forward your nomination. Whilst saluting winners, may I also add my congratulations again to Chapman Ventilation for being awarded the Defence Employer Recognition Scheme (ERS), gold award. An exceptional achievement. There were also several other winners in the silver and bronze categories from our county. I am very pleased to see a good number of local exporters and potential exporters who are signed up to and engaged with the DIT Export Academy. We will be running, in conjunction with DIT, a roundtable on 16 November where I look forward to both exchanging views with companies and seeing how we can assist you in developing your export strategy.

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Furthermore, November is our International Trade month, during which we will be holding a Commonwealth country event, whereby speakers will be presenting from a variety of the Commonwealth, giving overviews of their countries and trading opportunities. More such events are being planned and do let me know if you would like specific countries featured. The same goes for training. Let me know if there are areas you would like training in, or a refresh, as we are looking to revamp our training offerings to help companies export more and better. Many of you move goods between the UK and countries in the EU. We all know things have changed and so HMRC have set up a very useful helpline. If you have a question about importing, exporting or customs reliefs you should call HMRC Customs and International Trade helpline on 0300 322 9434. The helpline is open from 8am to 10pm Monday to Friday and from 8am to 4pm at weekends. Finally and regrettably, scams are now part of our everyday life. Stay vigilant as some may mimic government messages as a way of appearing authentic. Search ‘scams’ on GOV.UK for information on how to recognise genuine HMRC contact. You can also forward suspicious emails claiming to be from HMRC to and texts to 60599. Access the National Cyber Security Centre’s new guide on how to stay secure online and protect yourself or your business against cybercrime by searching ‘Cyber Aware’ on GOV.UK.

I look forward to seeing you on our forthcoming webinars. All details will be on the Chamber website. Have a profitable run up to Christmas.

I am very pleased to see a good number of local exporters and potential exporters who are signed up to and engaged with the DIT Export Academy. We will be running, in conjunction with DIT, a roundtable on 16 November where I look forward to both exchanging views with companies and seeing how we can assist you in developing your export strategy.

Four new ‘Unsung Heroes’ award-winners recognised by Watford Borough Council Four new ‘Unsung Heroes’ award-winners have been announced by Watford Borough Council, as part of the initiative to celebrate the positive contributions made by people in the borough during the pandemic and beyond.

In March, five local residents were presented certificates and hampers for their outstanding services to the Watford community. This included Lidia Rufolo, Vicki Goodall, Suren Vis and mother and daughter duo - Jane and Isabella – who all provided support to people in the community, by helping with foodbanks, mental health support or care packages. New heroes who have been nominated by residents for their amazing acts of kindness during the pandemic and beyond were honoured by Elected Mayor of Watford Peter Taylor this month. They include: • Norman and Yvonne Brandon The nomination said: “The couple organise their local elderly luncheon group and have come up with innovative ways to keep everyone’s smile going. Most have no or little technology which makes it even more challenging. Norman also continues to run his club pack over Zoom which for his age has been amazing too.” • Gordon Wagstaff The nomination said: “Since the start of lockdown, Gordon has run and organised the St Helen’s Church Foodbank. Gordon does this six days a week, without complaint. If someone needs anything, out of the allotted hours, then Gordon will be there. Gordon is a pillar of the community, for years, he also helps to open up the church every day, or near every day. I would love Gordon to receive this award, and I am sure so many others would too, to show how amazing he is, to so many people and families.” • Ros Powell (Senior Health Care Assistant at Peace Hospice Care) The nomination said: ‘She an incredible job dealing with serious illness and people there awaiting their end of life. Amazing support and help to their families and still spending her own time helping anyone in need. She is caring and devoted her life to helping people, always putting herself last, so I believe she deserves an amazing thanks and shown how amazing she is.” Elected Mayor of Watford Peter Taylor said: “The community spirit in Watford is second-to-none and the winners of the ‘Unsung Heroes’ award highlight that there are so many people, organisations and charities in the town who quietly go about transforming people’s lives all year round and make an incredible contribution to our communities. “It’s a great honour to be the Elected Mayor of Watford and I feel privileged to meet such incredible individuals, who regularly dedicate their time and energy to helping others. It is heartening to understand their stories and contributions and I would like to say thank you to everyone who has been helping others and our award winners. You really make a difference and our town is so grateful for your kindness.” The ‘Unsung Heroes’ initiative will no longer be accepting nominations, however, Watford’s 16th Audentior Awards will be recognising local people and organisations who are actively making Watford a better place to live and work in. The awards ceremony takes place on Friday 4 March 2022 at Watford Colosseum.

To nominate your hero, visit

Legal Property Experts

in association with Penman Sedgwick LLP James Phelps – Solicitor, Property

Changes to Environmental Legislation & the Impact on Residential Landlords: Key Issues In 2016 The Energy Efficiency Regulations 2015 established new Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (sometimes referred to as the MEES Regulations) in the private rental sector. Not only do the MEES Regulations set energy efficiency standards that must be met before properties are let (unless a legitimate reason for not doing so can be claimed), they also give some residential tenants rights to make energy efficiency improvements despite restrictions that may be contained within the Lease. The aim of the regulations is to improve the quality of private rented buildings and to reduce overall emissions in line with the Government’s environmental targets. From 1st April 2018 the letting of properties with an EPC (Energy Performance Certificate) rating of below ‘E’ was prohibited. Under the current rules 20%-25% of residential/commercial properties in England and Wales fall below this standard. The UK Government has indicated that it intends to raise the minimum standard for lettings to render it unlawful to let properties with an EPC rating of ‘D’ by 2025 and ‘C’ or even ‘B’ by 2030.

According to government figures this would result in 85% of current leasehold properties being classed as unlettable. Whilst increasing the relative bargaining power of tenants, landlords will likely encounter a multitude of challenges bringing their property portfolios up to the required standard in the years to come. The regulations will need to be considered by landlords when: • Acquiring Leases; • Drafting Leases; • Determining whether your property is covered by the regulations; • Managing properties; • Commissioning an up-to-date EPC; • Assessing what action needs to be taken to improve the EPC rating; • Selecting energy efficiency measures; • Funding property improvements; • Setting long-term energy performance standards; • Examining enforcement and penalties; • Conducting portfolio assessments; • Selling unlettable properties.

If you are looking for legal advice, we can help.

Problem Solved e: t: 01923 225212

5 George Street, Watford, Herts WD18 0SQ INSPIRE INSPIRE 53 53



25 Years Over


Hertfordshire Chamber Celebrates its Long-Standing Members





As we approach 100 years in business, Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce would like to express our sincere gratitude for our members. In particular those who have been with us the longest, for their continued support in contributing towards our chamber; from attending our events to sharing news on the website. Over the last two years, Hertfordshire businesses have battled their way through the COVID-19 pandemic, and have come out on top through resilience, tenacity and adaptability.

PATRON u Altro

The 10th Inspiring Hertfordshire Awards took place in September at Warner Bros Studios in Watford, where we celebrated the successes of our members and non-members alike with a fantastic ceremony, and in excellent company. We value the trust that our members have put in us to support their business through good times and bad. It is a pleasure to serve you and we certainly

Group Plc

PLATINUM MEMBER u GlaxoSmithKline PLATINUM MEMBER u Hertfordshire

County Council

PLATINUM MEMBER u Hillier Hopkins

PATRON u Sopwell



look forward to continue doing so. From Bronze members to Patrons, we could not function without our members, so, on behalf of everyone at Herts Chamber, thank you. Briege Leahy CEO Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce

Since our purchase of Sopwell House 35 years ago we’ve been working in collaboration with Herts Chamber of Commerce. The relationship has been fruitful and beneficial. Since the arrival of Briege, and with her enthusiasm and drive, we jumped at the chance to become Patrons and to further our relationship and opportunities that Herts Chamber could offer. The team at the Chamber are brilliant dedicated professionals who are passionate about Business in Hertfordshire and determined to grow the sector further. We at Sopwell House share their vision and passion, so working closely together makes perfect sense and is a partnership we value highly.

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We are delighted to be a member of the Herts Chamber of


Murphy & Son Limited


No Climb Products Limited


Oaklands College


Otodynamics Limited


Pioneer Europe Limited


PJ Pipe & Valve Company Limited


R W Unwin & Co Limited


Richardson Supply Company Limited


SA Law


Sherrards Solicitors LLP


Taylor Walton LLP


Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council


Wilder Coe Ltd



Commerce and have built some wonderful relationships during the 25+ years associated with the group. The Chamber has grown significantly over the years and now offers valuable support to its members. At Aitchison Raffety, we have welcomed the opportunity to increase our contacts, had the pleasure of being introduced to numerous businesses that might help us achieve our ambitious goals and made some lovely friends along the way.

Zoe Stojanovic MCIM Director Head of Marketing ​ ITCHISON RAFFETY PROPERTY CONSULTANTS A


Agar Scientific Limited


Exemplas Holdings Limited


Aitchison Raffety


Grace Foods UK Limited

Azets (previously Wilkins Kennedy)


Baqus Group PLC


BPH Wealth Management LLP


Kane International Limited


Knebworth Barns Conference & Banqueting Centre


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British Lead Mills Bromwall Limited


H T Sports IA Barnes & Co Limited Intanglo

Lessiters Limited

(Williamson Morton Thornton Chartered Accountants)


Clement Clarke International Limited


Cleveland Scott York Intellectual Property Law

been more important than it is now. HCC membership helps


Corsair Toiletries Limited

directors in many different ways - from our role on HCC’s Board


Dermal Laboratories Limited


Digitimer Limited

Connecting with the wider business community has never us meet and collaborate with innovative business owners and of Directors to networking at their events.

Steve Ryan Managing Partner SA LAW INSPIRE


r e b m e m e R ! s e l b a s u e r your Around 50% of plastic is used just once before being thrown away. Stop single-use.

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Skills Knowledge Confidence. Training and development to help build your business back better. The pandemic has had an unprecedented impact on our economy - to truly build back better many businesses need to rapidly upskill and reskill their employees. The Chancellor’s Budget put skills and training at the heart of this rebuild and your local College is here to help you maximise your businesses potential. Take advantage of opportunities to modernise the skills and knowledge of your workforce and to help you start building a talent pipeline. Scan the QR code to contact West Herts College and find out how we can help your business grow.



Middlesex University – Degree Apprenticeships Middlesex University has a reputation for sector leading expertise in apprenticeships that is reinforced by our innovative work with our public and private sector employer partners.

This vision positions the University as a provider of high-quality transformative apprenticeships that demonstrably meets the needs of national, regional and local employers. The University has already demonstrated that through the provision of apprenticeships we are enabling people from disadvantaged and under-represented backgrounds to access professional careers. Apprenticeships have a key role to play in shaping a better world by enhancing both productivity and social mobility. Middlesex University is currently directly contributing to the quality of public sector services, meeting the workforce requirements of public sector employers by training over 1,000 apprentices, for example by providing the nurses and police constables that our communities and wider society needs. This constitutes a major contribution to shaping a better world, not least in the context of meeting the major public sector challenges presented during the pandemic. The provision of cross-cutting digital skills is central to meeting the future skills needs of employers and Middlesex University has a key role to play. If the University is to respond positively to these significant opportunities and provide access to professional careers, locally, regionally and nationally, it must develop and deliver provision that equips people with crosscutting digital skills. Perhaps it is unsurprising that the most popular higher and degree apprenticeships with employers, such as the

Senior Leader, Chartered Manager and Digital Technology Solutions Professional, incorporate the requirement to develop these cross-cutting digital skills. Employers recruit to these apprenticeships precisely because they are relevant to a broad range of public and private sector professional roles and to meet this need, Middlesex University ensures that cross-cutting digital skills and digital apprenticeships are a key feature of our provision. The University also offers exciting and innovative apprenticeships in Coaching (Level 5) and Business to Business Sales (Level 6 full degree). Both of these qualifications work extremely well when fully embedded in an organisation’s desire to change and improve the well-being of their staff. Learnt theory is always fully practised and developed further in the work place to help aid productivity and staff development. The University is able to work with both levy and non-levy paying employers. Please do let us know if you would like any assistance or help with utilising your Digital Apprenticeship accounts.

Employers recruit to these apprenticeships precisely because they are relevant to a broad range of public and private sector professional roles and to meet this need, Middlesex University ensures that cross-cutting digital skills and digital apprenticeships are a key feature of our provision.

For any further information, please do contact me:


Senior Corporate Executive Middlesex University Email: INSPIRE


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Neville Reyner reminisces on his time with Herts Chamber, as he prepares to retire


aving moved into semi-retirement in Lincolnshire earlier this year, I will be stepping down as President of Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce (HCoC) at the end of 2021.

It has been a long journey for me at HCoC, I recall joining the board in the mid 1990’s invited by the then CEO Tim Hutchings, when I was Managing Director of Electronic Products Group, Mitsubishi Electric UK Ltd. Eventually I became the Chairman of HCoC and of Exemplas Holdings, of which HCoC was then a major shareholder. The journey has been a pleasant, rewarding and enjoyable experience throughout which I have witnessed changes in government, changes of policy initiatives and so on, but the Chamber of Commerce has remained a stable presence within Hertfordshire. In fact, HCoC is rapidly approaching a proud 100 years in business. During my many years as Chairman I have met Prime Ministers, MP’s and key figures in the public sector and charities. I have enjoyed meeting and working with some of our long term and newer chamber members either on a one to one basis or at events and dinners, a very valued experience. In my time at Herts Chamber, I have experienced working with three CEO’s and spent a period of a year and half as acting CEO as well as Chairman, before moving to the new position of President, in 2019. It was a great honour during my chairmanship to become involved with the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) at board level firstly as the East of England regional representative, then Vice President, and after a “hustings” debate throughout the UK, to have been appointed President and Chairman of the Board of the BCC in 2011. As Vice President of Eurochambres in Brussels, representing some 20 million enterprises throughout the European Chamber of Commerce network, I was invited to serve on the European Commission Cluster Policy group for my knowledge of cluster development. I recall meeting Jean- Claude Trichet, the President of European Central Bank (ECB), over lunch on the top floor of the euro tower in Frankfurt and looking down at an efficient flowing rail infrastructure.

I had the great honour of speaking in the European Parliament. In the UK I sat on the board of UK India Business Council too and one of many exciting memories I have, was speaking at the famous Oxford Union.

It wasn’t always a good time in the BCC because there was a concerted move at that time by Core City Chambers to pull away from the BCC. These were quite stressful times, but I did eventually prevent the breakup of the BCC. While at the BCC I travelled throughout the UK and attended many gala evening functions run by Chambers of Commerce, and thought, ‘Why don’t we run one of these in Hertfordshire?’ which led to the formation of the Inspiring Hertfordshire Awards, in 2012. I always wanted these awards to become the Rolls Royce of events in Hertfordshire, and I wish to commend Briege Leahy, Naomi Powell and their team for their work in achieving what I initially wished. In the UK we have what is called a voluntary chamber membership model, whereas in Germany and France for example they have public law status. In the UK, this allows for other membership organisations to compete with the Chambers of Commerce, but as an accredited Chamber of the BCC network, we are a member of a global brand. Through our membership of the BCC, we have access to a global network and that of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) based in Paris. I can’t forget the largest trading block, the EU, and although Brexit was voted for, UK companies will need to continue to trade in the EU and Chambers of Commerce stand ready to assist. Its potential value to members is enormous. So, as I step down, I leave a sound legacy with good management, good and up to date governance in place and a positive future ahead for Hertfordshire Chamber of Commerce which I am especially proud of. Although now living in Lincolnshire I have already been recruited onto the Hull and Humber Chamber of Commerce Council and will be a guest speaker at an event in Scunthorpe in October on the subject of the governments levelling up agenda. Therefore, I am still involved in what I strongly believe in, the value of Chambers of Commerce.

During my many years as Chairman I have met Prime Ministers, MP’s and key figures in the public sector and charities. I have enjoyed meeting and working with some of our long term and newer chamber members either on a one to one basis or at events and dinners, a very valued experience.

Thank you to all our members. Best regards Neville Reyner CBE DL Hon.DLitt BSc MBA CEng FIET FRSA FIoD




The Last Word

Richard Wells

Head of office print sales, UK and Ireland

Epson UK

Q What do you do?

I’m the head of sales for Epson UK’s office printing division. I cover all of the UK and Ireland so it’s a fairly demanding but enjoyable role. Essentially, I manage the team that’s in control of the marketing side of the product. I love the challenge of further developing and growing sales of Epson managed products across these countries.

Q Who do you work for?

Epson UK. It’s part of a global technology group that creates and delivers technology solutions for businesses and consumers, from inkjet printers and digital printing systems to smart glasses, sensing systems and industrial robots. It has certainly come a long way from developing the world’s first compact lightweight digital printer, the EP-101!

Q Why did you join the Chamber? We’ve been a Chamber member for many years. We feel that it’s important to show commitment to the area and build connections here. We actively get involved in events that help the general commerce of the area. If you’re going to operate in a particular locality, I think that it’s vital to support the businesses that are based there.

Q What do you get from it?

We always consider Chamber members when we need to procure local services and products. Whilst Epson is a global group, it still has a strong philosophy of buying local




whenever possible. Hertfordshire has some excellent businesses and entrepreneurs and a vibrant community spirit.

Q How has it helped your network?

We’re genuinely proud to be a part of the Herts community. Being a Chamber member has helped us to build brand awareness of a business which employs just under 400 staff locally. We can build our reach and that will help us with our recruitment drive as we continue to grow our Herts presence.

Q What advice would you

give someone starting out in business?

Be confident in your own abilities and humble in your success. Its’s also important to always be open-minded and receptive to other people’s views.

Q What’s the biggest challenge in running and growing a business?

Maintaining momentum. A lot of businesses hit plateaus that cause them to slow

down so you have to find ways of keeping that momentum going. We’ve always tried to do this at Epson, even during the worst of the pandemic.

Q What support do you want from government?

The UK government needs to find ways of making trade with Europe easier following the Brexit deal. We distribute from our warehouses into Europe, so this is a vital trading region for us. Businesses also need more consistency in government policy, which tends to flip one way then the other.

Q How confident are you that your business will grow in the future?

I’m confident that we’ll enjoy further success in developing the business. I’m also proud that Epson is a very environmentally conscious group; we’re entrenched in sustainability and operate in a highly ethical way. To give one example, we use a heat-free system for printing, which consumes a fraction of energy that laser printers do.

We actively get involved in events that help the general commerce of the area. If you’re going to operate in a particular locality, I think that it’s vital to support the businesses that are based there.

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