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THE OFFICIAL PUBLICATION OF DEVON & PLYMOUTH CHAMBER OF COMMERCE FREE TO MEMBERS

INSIDE THE DOME Behind the scenes at Plymouth’s world-class Grade II listed Market Hall Pages 26 - 27

NEWS: Building a bright future with Babcock International

FINANCE: Could technology be key to recovery in hospitality sector?

SKILLS: City College begins transformation journey


�Thomas Westcott

By Your Side. On Your Side.

� CHARTERED ACCOUNTANTS

Meet our Tax Team Spanning 17 offices and with a wealth of experience and knowledge, our Tax specialists will help you navigate any taxation issue you may be faced with.

Mark Tibbert

Ian Pring

Michael Marsh

Mark is our Head of Tax specialising in corporate tax advice, and has advised owner-managed businesses through to international corporate organisations on reorganisations, acquisitions and disposals, and share scheme implementation.

Ian advises on business and corporate tax matters, specialising in property taxes with a particular interest in SDLT for which he provides tax support to other property professionals.

Michael advises a wide range clients and works closely with them and their other advisers to identify opportunities and provide solutions that are both tax efficient and meet their financial objectives.

Bernice Constantine

Annette Stone

Bernice specialises in SME entities and their owners including group reorganisations, the purchase and sale of businesses, incorporation, share schemes and share valuations, dispute resolution and succession planning.

Annette advises on Remuneration, CGT, and Personal Tax planning whilst also able to assist on VAT compliance issues.As a qualified Trust and Estates Practitioner is able to offer I HT advice.

Sheldon Cole Sheldon advises on the tax efficient structuring of company sales, other transactions involving private company shares and employee share schemes. He also provides income tax, CGT and inheritance tax planning advice to private clients.

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Summer 2021 Chamber Profile


CHAMBER CONTENTS

CONTENTS

CHAMBER PROFILE SUMMER 2021

COVER STORY Inside Plymouth’s Grade II listed Market Hall and worldclass Immersive Dome SEE PAGE 26 - 27

FIRST WORD 4

Chamber Chief Executive Stuart Elford looks back at the historic G7 Summit in Cornwall and forward to what comes next for the South West

MEMBER NEWS 5

Buckfast Abbey Conference Centre unveils state-of-the art £2million Schiller Hall

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China Fleet Country Club Vaccination Centre says farewell to dedicated volunteers

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Major international success for Plymouth couple’s web design firm

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Marjon expands PhD programme to include Business and Social Science research

CHAMBER NEWS 14

South West success stories and trade secrets on ‘In Conversation With...’

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Take on our Charity Golf Day challenge and help make a difference

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World business debate future of economy at hugely significant C7 Conference

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A warm welcome to all our new Devon & Plymouth Chamber members

18 -19 Meet our Chamber Board - including our new directors

FOCUS FEATURES MEET OUR NEWEST PATRON

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Plymouth high street awarded £101,290 grant for cultural programme

22-23 Exploring the world of apprenticeships with South Devon College

10 - 11 Building a bright future with Babcock International

SECTOR FOCUS

CHAMBER AWARDS

29-29 ENERGY How can ports best exploit the potential of hydrogen?

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Honour the best of South West business at our glittering ceremony

CHAMBER TEST DRIVE 40 - 41 We take an in-depth look at the exciting new Jaguar I-PACE

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FINANCE Could technology be the key to recovery in the hospitality sector?

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LEGAL What the extension of the furlough scheme means for your business

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INTERNATIONAL TRADE Helping our members to connect, grow and succeed worldwide

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SMALL BUSINESS TOOLKIT Identify the health and safety risks within your business

36-37 SKILLS City College Plymouth begins ambitious journey of transformation 38

CONSTRUCTION YMCA Plymouth regeneration project starts to take shape

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CHARITY Burts Snacks forms RNLI partnership as it looks to grow after pandemic

CHAMBER PEOPLE 42

Jasmine Peglar, Events Executive at Devon & Plymouth Chamber of Commerce

Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

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FIRST WORD

FIRST WORD THE OFFICIAL PUBLICATION OF DEVON AND PLYMOUTH CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

CONTACT DETAILS Devon & Plymouth Chamber of Commerce Unit 5 Derriford Business Park, Brest Road, Plymouth, Devon PL6 5QZ T: 01752 220471 E: reception@devonchamber.co.uk W: www.devonchamber.co.uk News and articles should be sent to: E: marketing@devonchamber.co.uk Front cover: Behind the scenes at Plymouth’s world-class Grade II listed Market Hall See pages 26-27 Published by Cornerstone Vision Ltd 28 Old Park Road, Peverell, Plymouth PL3 4PY T: 01752 225623 W: www.cornerstonevision.com Managing Editor Chris Girdler Designer Leah-Maarit Jeffery Advertising David Simpson E: dave@cornerstonevision.com Printed by PDS Print W: www.pdsprint.co.uk PRIVACY NOTICE Cornerstone Vision Ltd process personal information for certain legitimate interest purposes, which includes the following: • To provide postal copies of this publication to Chamber member and Cornerstone Vision Ltd customers; and • To offer marketing and promotional opportunities within this publication to Chamber members an prospects. Whenever we process data for these purposes, we always ensure we treat your Personal Data rights in high regard. Chamber Profile is produced on behalf of Devon & Plymouth Chamber of Commerce by Cornerstone Vision Ltd and is distributed without charge to more than 1,500 key businesses and all Chamber members in Devon. The publisher is committed to achieving the highest quality standard. However, views expressed in the magazine are independent and while every care has been taken to ensure that the information it contains is accurate, the publisher cannot accept any responsibility for any omission or inaccuracies that might arise. The publication (or any part thereof) may not be reproduced, transmitted or stored in print or electronic format without the prior written permission of Cornerstone Vision Ltd.

SOCIAL MEDIA Follow us on Twitter www.twitter.com/@chamber_devon Like us on Facebook Devon Chamber of Commerce Join us on LinkedIn Devon Chamber of Commerce

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Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

Welcome to another jam-packed edition of Profile, which starts with a look back at this summer’s historic G7 Summit meeting in Cornwall. World leaders descended on Carbis Bay to discuss some of the most pressing challenges facing us, from climate change to tackling the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. In the weeks leading up to this groundbreaking event, British Chambers of Commerce South West (BCCSW) wrote to the Prime Minister to ask for leadership in helping businesses build a more sustainable future for trade that operates in harmony with our environment. Subsequently, more than 230 business leaders and academics joined a virtual ‘C7’ conference hosted by BCCSW, focusing on the challenges and opportunities of a truly ‘blue and green’ economy. The South West relies heavily on leisure, hospitality and tourism, together with the food and drink industries, and the impact of coronavirus and Brexit has made it particularly difficult for these businesses. That is why there must be support, to allow these businesses to survive. If we can just get over the line and get to a full easing of restrictions, that will result in businesses surviving, a rise in employment and be much better for the whole economy. We outlined the various avenues of support available for South West businesses during our Access to Finance event, which was watched by hundreds of you across our social media channels. Coming to you live from Fresh Air Studios in Plymouth, our highly successful virtual event would not have been possible without our fabulous Chamber team, together with Paul Philpott and his talented broadcasters. While on the subject of Fresh Air Studios, thank you to everyone who has listened to our ‘In Conversation With...’ series of podcasts. Over the last few weeks I have been joined by a number of personalities and business owners who have shared their fascinating success stories, as well as a few trade secrets! It feels like I’m rarely off the screen at the moment... Many of you may have seen my brief appearance on BBC News in June, during which I spoke about the four-week delay in

CHAMBER PATRONS

lifting the remaining coronavirus restrictions and the ‘catastrophic’ effect it could have on business. Businesses would prefer that there was a delay, though, rather than another stop-start approach which is very, very disruptive. I think we’re all aware that life isn’t going to return to what it was before but, as the world continues to reopen, let’s look forward to what comes next. The Chamber has a number of exciting events planned over the coming months, including our fabulous Charity Golf Day at Boringdon Park which will now take place on August 5. We’re holding this flagship event in partnership with Boringdon Park Golf Club and lead sponsors Frazer-Nash Consultancy, in association with Jeremiah’s Journey. Our packed events programme also features an opportunity to peek inside The Market Hall in Devonport - a significant project which truly unlocks Plymouth’s huge potential as a digital leader. Following the success of our first breakfast meeting at this stunning new venue, you’ll be pleased to hear that we’re holding another in July - and places are available now. You’ll find details of all of our upcoming events on our new and improved Devon & Plymouth Chamber of Commerce website, which features all the fantastic content from our previous site - but with a fresh new look. The new website is more user-friendly, which means it’s easier to navigate and find the information you need. There’s even a dedicated section for our Devon & Plymouth Chamber Awards, which will culminate in a glittering ceremony at Buckfast Abbey this September. Our 2021 awards hold particular significance in what has been a hugely challenging year for many businesses across the region - and businesses only have until July 14 to enter. We cannot wait to congratulate your teams on a well-deserved night of celebration on Friday, September 24.

STUART ELFORD

CHIEF EXECUTIVE, DEVON & PLYMOUTH CHAMBER OF COMMERCE


MEMBER NEWS

MEMBER NEWS

NEWS FOR & FROM MEMBERS OF DEVON & PLYMOUTH CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

Buckfast Abbey Conference Centre unveils state-of-the art £2million Schiller Hall A new-look, state-of-theart event hall and extended conference centre facilities has opened its doors at the heart of Buckfast Abbey ready to support businesses, Chamber members and event organisers seeking an inspirational and easily accessible venue for meetings, conferences, exhibitions, trade shows or events. Conveniently located midway between Exeter and Plymouth, just off the A38, the Conference Centre’s Schiller Hall has undergone a £2million makeover, including the construction of a new mezzanine floor and terrace area, which makes the most of stunning views over the River Dart, the Abbey Church, sweeping grounds and its beautiful gardens. The expanded central atrium area in the Schiller Hall, which has a newly raised roof to flood in natural light, provides the perfect venue for performances, rehearsals, speaker events, art, film and theatre shows. As part of the extensive

renovations and construction work, one larger room that converts into two additional meeting rooms is now available to book on the new first floor of The Schiller Hall. Each accommodates up to ten guests and has views over the grounds as well as the atrium area where trade shows, presentations, social and educational events can be held. Capable of catering for up to 120 delegates in the new Schiller Hall, the Conference Centre has been extended to the East providing new kitchen and catering facilities as well as extended cloakrooms and service accommodation, making it a perfect venue for dinners, awards or special events. Six other event rooms, which can host groups of up to 85, are currently available to book in the main conference centre, each of which has been enhanced with the very latest in audiovisual equipment to aid training, presentations or business events. Commenting on the newly renovated Schiller Hall and conference centre, which was

designed by Totnes based Rud Sawyers Architects, Chief Operating Officer, Matt Roach, said: “It has been a great honour to oversee the design and completion of work on what is now one of the finest conference venues in the South West; one created to meet the exacting needs of event organisers looking for leading edge facilities. “We are particularly proud of the care taken to create an elegant, contemporary building which integrates material such as zinc and copper, both present on the roof of the Abbey Church, and timber cladding, which echoes the wooded context of the River Dart. The result is a piece of architecture that sits naturally in its surroundings, and yet provides 2,200 ft2 of additional space. “That, matched with the building’s low energy design, natural ventilation systems, high performance glazing, solar panels, shading, and the use of low energy heating and light systems, means that we have kept true to our low impact

values at the same time as creating a statement venue fit for the 21st century.” The new Schiller Hall and refurbished Conference Centre will be officially unveiled at an event later this summer. Prices are available from £38.50 per delegate for a full day and are available to Devon and Plymouth Chamber members at a 5% discount. To book, call 01364645530 or visit www. buckfast.org.uk/ The Conference Centre is renowned for the quality of its menus which are created celebrating seasonal, local ingredients. Parking is free and rooms come with refreshments, homemade biscuits and a range of equipment including: flip charts, pens and paper, large screen and projection facilities, Wi-Fi, Audio facilities, connectivity via HDMI Cable, a built-in PC, White and Pin boards. On-site accommodation for residential conferences and events is available at the 33 bedroom on-site Northgate hotel, or group accommodation at Grangehurst House.

Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

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MEMBER NEWS

China Fleet Country Club Vaccination Centre says farewell China Fleet Country Club has been proud to support the NHS vaccination programme and will be sad to see all the team and volunteers leave. The Country Club has hosted a vaccination centre with thousands arriving for successful vaccinations over the past few months. Dr Penny Atkinson, clinical director for East Cornwall primary care network (PCN), said: “The GP-led team providing the vaccination service across East Cornwall PCN is extremely proud that together we have given nearly 89,000 first and second doses of the vaccine to our most vulnerable patients in cohorts 1-9. “I would like to thank all my colleagues who have worked tirelessly to deliver the COVID vaccine to our patients. I would also like to give my heartfelt thanks to over 100 volunteers, our parish and town council and the China Fleet Club, who have pulled out all the stops to help us deliver the vaccine – we couldn’t have done it without you. “Marlene Carr and Martin Green at Millennium House have been absolute stars with their help, support and care come rain and shine and I wish to extend a special thank you to them both” China Fleet Country Club is an awardwinning hotel, golf and health club set in 180 acres of stunning countryside on the banks of the River Tamar in Saltash. Having first opened in 1991, the Club celebrates its 30th anniversary. Supermarkets have provided volunteers with food and drink throughout the

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vaccination programme. Volunteers have provided car parking duties and guided people to their vaccinations as well as providing vaccinations where they have an appropriate health background and training Remaining patients requiring vaccination will be able to access other local vaccination services including hospital hubs, community pharmacies and larger vaccination centres which are now in place to deliver this service. This will allow GP practice teams to fully focus their time on their usual services to patients. Old Bridge Surgery, Looe, and Tamar Valley Health, Callington, will continue to deliver vaccines. Large vaccination sites are located at The Royal Cornwall Showground in Wadebridge, Stithians Showground, Home Park, Plymouth and Derriford Hospital, Plymouth. Vaccinations are also available Redruth Pharmacy, based out of the Redruth Rugby Football Club, Reeds Pharmacy, Truro, Roche Pharmacy, Roche, Wedmore Pharmacy, based out of Camborne Community Centre, Arnolds Pharmacy at Westward Ho! Baptist Church, Bideford, Devon and Devonport Pharmacy at Plymouth Albion, Brickfields Recreation Ground. To book an appointment use the NHS online booking service at www.nhs.uk/covidvaccination or call 119. A range of vaccines suitable for different age groups are available.

Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

GOLF’S ULTIMATE PRACTICE TOOL COMES TO CHINA FLEET China Fleet Country Club in Saltash is making real game improvements to its 20-bay golf driving range by installing Toptracer Range. Toptracer Range is the ultimate practice tool, taking the guesswork out of range sessions by offering an engaging, data-driven experience that appeals to everyone. Enjoyable to all, guests of all ages and abilities, from golfer to non-golfer, will enjoy playing iconic courses or taking aim at virtual targets. With game models for all ages and a leaderboard for friendly competition, heated bays and the introduction of a new food and drink app, take your driving range experience to a new level. The move is part of a wider family experience strategy that also features the introduction of an 18-hole Woodland Adventure mini golf course and Woodland Fairy Trail, alongside The Cabin – café & bar, a new dining facility offering a delicious selection of hot and cold food and snacks; with an outdoor picnic area and play park for the children. Find out more: www.china-fleet. co.uk/golf-course-play-cornwall/ driving-range


MEMBER NEWS

Marine Research Plymouth cements city’s reputation as go-to location for marine science

The city of Plymouth has seen its position as an international centre of excellence for marine research further enhanced after its three leading science organisations joined forces to launch Marine Research Plymouth. The University of Plymouth, the Marine Biological Association and Plymouth Marine Laboratory already have world-leading reputations individually across a range of marine disciplines and have strong track records in delivering projects for governments, industry and research bodies. Collectively, however, they host the largest number of marine scientists in any UK city and the greatest number of undergraduate and postgraduate marine students anywhere in the country. Between them, they alerted the world to marine plastics, have conducted the longest running assessment of plankton health, and are consistently pioneering new technology and innovations that highlight the impact of climate change on our oceans and coastlines. The three organisations will retain their individual identities and roles while promoting even greater collaboration on major projects and ventures. Marine Research Plymouth will encourage joint investment

in research appointments and support the sharing of capabilities, equipment and facilities. It will ensure Plymouth is even betterplaced to attract further funding for initiatives that can advance knowledge and understanding of the oceans. Professor Judith Petts CBE, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Plymouth – recently named the best university globally for its marine research and teaching in the Times Higher Education Impact Rankings 2021 – said: “World-leading science that ensures the health and sustainability of marine environments is dependent on collaboration. “The University collaborates across the UK and globally and its leadership in marine science has long been recognised. I am delighted that Marine Research Plymouth builds on our immensely strong local partnerships to showcase and position Plymouth – Britain’s Ocean City – as a centre of global leadership, opportunity and impact in the marine and ocean sciences that are so vital to our planet.” Professor Icarus Allen, Chief Executive of Plymouth Marine Laboratory – which consistently produces research listed amongst

the top 1% of the most cited environmental science papers in the world and has unrivalled capabilities in marine monitoring and AI technology – said: “A healthy and sustainable ocean can only be achieved if organisations, individuals, industry and policy-makers work together to address the increasing challenges faced by the marine environment. “Plymouth Marine Laboratory already works collaboratively with partners across the world to further our understanding of the ocean and create sustainable solutions to issues such as climate change and marine plastics. “Through Marine Research Plymouth there is an opportunity to further harness the world-leading expertise and long heritage of marine research that exists in Plymouth – Britain’s Ocean City – and create a true centre of global excellence. This will bring benefits not just for the organisations involved but for the city and its residents, the wider South West, the UK and beyond.” The establishment of Marine Research Plymouth has been supported by funding from the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), part of UK Research and Innovation.

Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

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MEMBER NEWS

Major international success for Plymouth web design firm A web design agency run by a Plymouth couple has won a raft of international clients as the Covid pandemic removes traditional borders. Made with Maturity, set up in 2015 by husband and wife Ben and Clare Stirling, only had one non-UK client before the coronavirus crisis hit in early 2020. But with the signing of a deal with a software development firm operating in the USA and Russia, in May 2021, it brings the number of international clients to eight. Made with Maturity is now also working with businesses in Germany, Spain, Thailand, Portugal, Finland, and Poland. The clients are in a variety of sectors including TV and media, healthcare and medical and manufacturing. Mr Stirling puts the success down to several factors, but chiefly that the pandemic has meant firms are looking further afield for services, if they can be provided remotely. It means quality and price trump locality for companies searching for web designers and similar tech businesses. The low value of sterling may also be a factor, Mr Stirling said, with the exchange rate of the pound against other leading currencies having fallen significantly since the 2016 Brexit vote. However, Mr Stirling stressed that price is not everything, and quality of service is also key to prospective clients, with nearly all the new wins coming after strong referrals and recommendations from satisfied Made with Maturity clients. “Before Covid we had a good national/ local customer base with only one

Ben and Clare Stirling

international client, in France,” he said. “Since lockdown we have seen a massive growth in our international clients. We won our most recent one from Russia and we have now worked with eight international nations since lockdown began. “Because we are a digital-based business, international barriers have not been a problem, and with the globe working from home it’s been easier to work with good people wherever they live. So it’s interesting to see how a global lockdown has seen an increase in global sales for us.” Made with Maturity operates from offices at Plymouth Science Park, returning from home-working at Easter 2021 when restrictions were eased.

The firm provides web design and digital marketing and is focused on UX (user experience) design, which means it stays onboard to continually improve the websites it creates, and increase their efficiency, what it calls “creating an environment”. Mr Stirling said: “We design and build it (the website) but once it goes live we do user testing to see that the end users and customers are using it the way it was intended. It’s pre- and post-, we create environments where we can test, alter and tweak it.” During lockdown the company took on two permanent staff, to double its full-time total, but it also works with about 20 partner companies and freelancers.

Listen to ‘Business Noodles and Doodles’ with PKF Francis Clark PKF Francis Clark has launched an exciting new monthly podcast series titled ‘Business Noodles and Doodles’ - and the guest speaker for June is Amanda Stansfield, from Granny Gothards In the first episode, Will Ashworth, chief executive of Watergate Bay Hotel in Cornwall and Another Place in the Lake District, talks about the evolution of tourism and how to maintain a strong culture in a growing business. During a wide-ranging conversation, he discusses his family’s long involvement in the hospitality industry, what his team have

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been doing during lockdown and his plans to create a new collection of lifestyle hotels. The second episode sees Mark Roberts, founder and chief executive at Lightfoot, talk about the lightbulb moment that resulted in them developing technology which incentivises drivers and ultimately achieves greater efficiency from their vehicles. Mark also discusses how they work with investors including Martin McCourt, who was CEO at Dyson for 11 years. And in the May podcast, Dave Harland, CEO at the Eden Project talks about celebrating their 20th birthday in March

Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

2021 and working with international partners to establish more sites around the world including China and Costa Rica, as well as discussing the wider topic of sustainability. You can listen to all episodes here: www.podcasts.pkf-francisclark.co.uk/ podcasts


MEMBER NEWS

We are open from 7 event rooms, superb 21st June - Bookings catering & business taken now for our class technology – newly refurbished A truly unique conference Schiller Hall and venue just 2 minutes from the A38 Expressway Conference Centre.

We can’t wait to welcome you back Buckfast Abbey Northwood Lane, Buckfast, Devon TQ11 0EG | www.buckfastconferences.org.uk | 01364 645530 | Buckfast Abbey is a registered Charity No. 232497

GO SOUTH WEST TURNS ONE Doubling your business during a worldwide pandemic is nothing short of a miracle, however, that is exactly what Plymouth Citybus has done in the past 12 months. Despite Covid-19 and passenger numbers dropping drastically due to lockdown, in March 2020, Plymouth Citybus expanded operations into Cornwall, effectively doubling the size of the company. The Cornwall services are run as ‘Go Cornwall Bus’, on behalf of Cornwall Council, under the brand Transport for Cornwall. As part of this expansion, Go South West was created as a parent brand for both

Plymouth Citybus and Go Cornwall Bus. Go South West now oversees both operations and is the name for stakeholder and B2B relationships. Part of the Go-Ahead Group, Go South West is now very much at the heart of the community it serves, being an influential member of multiple organisations that make a difference to life in the region. As Go South West celebrates its first birthday, the company now employs over 800 staff, with a bus fleet of over 300. It’s been a tough first year, one that nobody could have predicted but

it has come through the year in good shape. Now with the end of the pandemic in sight, Go South West is looking forward to a great future. Early last year, Go South West gained Investors in People, Platinum accreditation, an achievement that only 2% of businesses achieve. The company also have recently won the Queen’s Award for Enterprise, the highest honour which can be bestowed upon a company and of which the company is extremely proud about.

Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

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MEMBER NEWS

Build a bright future with Babcock In this edition our newest Patron, Babcock International, sets out its ambitious future plans and shares details of the many opportunities to join them on a journey as they connect with the wider community and restore pride in one of Plymouth’s oldest and most recognised landmarks.

Babcock is an international aerospace, defence and security company, with a leading naval business, providing value and services across a range of countries, helping customers in the UK and around the world to improve the capability, reliability and availability of their most critical assets. One of the largest sites that it owns and operates is Devonport Royal Dockyard (DRD) – one of Plymouth’s oldest and most iconic landmarks with a rich heritage and history dating back 300 years, which is co-located with Her Majesty’s Naval Base Devonport to form the largest naval support site in Western Europe. Working in partnership with the Ministry of Defence at Devonport, Babcock provides through-life support for submarines, surface ships and associated systems and equipment as part of its continuing commitment to support our nation’s naval capability. As one of the region’s largest employers, Babcock is a strong investor in people and proud to be a Cornerstone Employer. Over the next decade, there will be more than 1,000 early careers job opportunities as well as a variety of other marine and nuclear related roles on offer. Having a strong pipeline of work in the years ahead provides Babcock with an excellent opportunity to proactively plan and prioritise. One of its primary areas of focus is sustainability, with a view to

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working much more collaboratively with local businesses by building on existing foundations and increasing local supply chain spend by many millions of pounds. Its strong links with the local community has resulted in tens of thousands of pounds donated to a wide range of charitable organisations in the area and the continued delivery of innovative STEM programmes in many schools and colleges across the city to encourage and inspire our engineers of the future. Babcock proudly supports events such as the city’s annual Armed Forces Day, as well as cultural attractions, including its sponsorship of The Box. One of the company’s priorities, as described in our Spring edition, is to contribute directly to the growth of the region’s economy by doing even more to support local enterprise, as well as increase visibility in the city. Babcock supports Plymouth’s Freeport Bid and is inviting local businesses to work with them in the years ahead to enable the delivery of more sustainable practices as part of the company’s strong ESG agenda. Paul Foster, the Managing Director at Devonport Royal Dockyard, has ambitious

Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

plans for the site. He said: “There has never been a better time to come on board with Babcock – we’re taking on hundreds of apprentices and graduates each year across a wide range of disciplines, and with significant investment being made across the site over the next 15 years to further modernise many of our assets to support ships and submarines of the future, now is the time to join us on our journey. “The dockyard site has a rich heritage and we are fortunate, particularly in the current economic climate, to have an exciting future driven by innovation and digitalisation. With an established pipeline of work we can map opportunities and positively embrace the changes needed to evolve our business and support our customers. “We cannot do that alone, and as only around 10% of our business is uniquely defence related, there are many opportunities for local SMEs to work with us in the years ahead, so if you’re interested and have a partnership proposition we’d love to hear from you. This is a time of positive change and you can be a part of it.” Building on the success of the prospective supplier event held in March of this year in conjunction with the Devon & Plymouth Chamber, another session is planned for the Autumn and all prospective partnering proposals are welcome. Inside the walls of the dockyard so much positive and innovative work is being delivered and during such a productive and exciting time for Babcock we look forward to hearing more about its plans for investment, innovation and transformation.


MEMBER NEWS

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MEMBER NEWS

Marjon expands PhD programme to include Business and Social Science research Plymouth Marjon University, already an established research centre in education, health and sport, has expanded its Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) offering to include business and social sciences. The new PhD opportunities now available include sustainability, business, entrepreneurship, sociology, criminology, psychology, international relations, community studies and social policy. Postgraduate research coordinator for Business and Social Science, Dr Gregory Borne, commented: “Marjon has a wealth of expertise and experienced research supervisors across the business and social science subjects. It’s fabulous that we’re now able to expand our offering. “We’ll be offering training and opportunities for students to showcase their research via our local, national and international connections. “In addition, PhD students can join our new Sustainability, Creativity and Innovation (SCION) research group. The group brings together theories of communication and behaviour change to tackle the big

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Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

sustainability issues. It links expert researchers with community and business partners to share knowledge and solve problems related to sustainability. It’s a fascinating time to be a researcher here.” In the recent Postgraduate Research Experience Survey (PRES, 2020) 100% of postgraduate research students agreed ‘other than my supervisor(s), I know who to approach if I am concerned about any aspect of my degree programme’, compared to a 79% sector average. Likewise 100% agreed ‘there is adequate provision of computing resources and facilities’ compared to a 79% sector average. These results are driven by the first-rate supervision and wider support network at Marjon. In addition, Marjon is now an established university for research, having recently made its first submissions to both the Knowledge Exchange Framework (KEF) and the Research Excellence Framework (REF). This demonstrates a strong research culture that feeds into national research frameworks. PhD candidate and SCION member, Katie

Major said: “Marjon has been incredibly supportive of my PhD project, providing a friendly research environment and offering a range of training opportunities. I’m enjoying the opportunity to pursue my research interests in consumer behaviour change and sustainable food consumption, which are critical to global sustainable development”. Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Professor Michelle Jones, who is responsible for the University’s research strategy added: “Marjon has made great strides forward developing our inclusive and vibrant research culture, we now have a growing PhD community, four interdisciplinary research and knowledge exchange groups and a vibrant programme of researcher events and training opportunities. “We take great pride in working as a community and it’s really exciting to be able to expand our PhD provision into the business and social science arena.” To find out more about research in business and social science, please email Dr Gregory Borne at gborne@marjon.ac.uk.


MEMBER NEWS

DEFIB MACHINE FUNDED IN JAY’S MEMORY When Brewin Dolphin associate investment manager James (Jay) Osborne, 28, collapsed and died

from sudden cardiac arrest in 2017 caused by an undiagnosed hereditary heart condition, his family

and friends established the charity Jay’s AIM to raise awareness of the condition and to reduce the number of young

people who die of sudden cardiac death in the South West of England. James’ colleagues at wealth manager Brewin Dolphin’s Exeter, Plymouth and Truro offices raised over £11,000 for Jay’s AIM through various fundraising activities, with some of the funds going towards having a defibrillator (defib) machine installed at Exeter library recently. Defib machines work by sending a highenergy electric current to restart the heart of someone who has gone into cardiac arrest.

Tim Walker, head of office, Brewin Dolphin (South West), said: “What Jay’s family have done in creating something so positive out of tragedy has been truly remarkable. We have been honoured to do what we can to support them. Jay was a muchloved member of our team and I am so pleased we have been able to help provide this defibrillator at Exeter library in his memory.”

Callum Elliott-Archer, centre manager at Exeter library, said: “Defibs save lives, and we’re really pleased to install one at Exeter library. It’s right by the front door, easily and quickly accessible if someone did collapse from a cardiac arrest, whether the library is open or not.”

way in which businesses “ The resolve their disputes has evolved a great deal in recent years.

The emphasis is now on allowing parties to have more control to settle disputes between themselves, rather than using the court system. Those that rush to court thinking they will get a quick resolution will often find they are in for an unexpected surprise. The claim could be stayed and the individual ordered to mediate, or try some other method of resolution. A recent spate of cases has also seen a number of parties heavily penalised on recovery of their legal costs (after winning the trial) because they were found to have refused to

mediate unreasonably. Modern dispute resolution therefore involves more creative thinking and asking different questions. Instead of, “how can a judge resolve this,” we increasingly ask, “how can we resolve this ourselves?”. This is our focus at GA Solicitors. We find the most effective and costeffective route to solving your business disputes.

Ieuan Jones

Partner & Business Disputes Solicitor

GAsolicitors.com | 01752 203500 enquiries@GAsolicitors.com

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CHAMBER NEWS

South West success stories and trade secrets on

‘In Conversation With...’ Our ‘In Conversation With...’ series of podcasts continues to go from strength to strength. Over the last few weeks we’ve been joined by a number of personalities and business owners who have shared with us their fascinating success stories, as well as a few trade secrets! There is a new episode every two weeks, and each features two exclusive interviews. In ‘Chamber Chat’, podcast host and Devon & Plymouth Chamber CEO Stuart Elford welcomes well-known local personalities to find out more about them as people and discuss our region. Meanwhile, ‘Chamber Made’ sees Stuart talk with Chamber members about their businesses, how they started out, the highs and lows, and what their plans are for the future. As always, each episode is professionally and seamlessly produced by Paul Philpott and his talented team at Fresh Air Studios’ production centre in Plymouth. Fresh Air Studios was established in 1998

and provides a wide range of audio production services for internal communications, IVR and podcasting. It is recognised throughout the UK as a respected independent audio agency and has won numerous awards for content and advertising production. Paul explains: “This region has a wealth of business expertise, firms that have diversified in the face of adversity, companies that are innovating every day, and our fair share of entrepreneurs, too – all with exciting and interesting stories to tell. “We are really excited to provide a new source of inspirational business content, and some great interviews with ‘the powers that be’ where they have the opportunity to face some challenging questions.” Stuart Elford adds: “Our ‘In Conversation With...’ podcasts are all about being able to hear from a whole variety of people, finding

out more about them as individuals and talking about our region. “You can listen to our podcasts and subscribe at any time by searching for ‘Devon Chamber In Conversation With’. In our latest episodes, Stuart talks to sailing legend Pete Goss, City College Plymouth principal Jackie Grubb, and Plymouth Culture CEO Hannah Harris, together with many other superb guests. He also talks to Paul Philpott about establishing Fresh Air Studios, what it’s like to produce the ‘In Conversation With...’ podcasts and the trials of running a media business from Plymouth when clients are far and wide. You can subscribe now via Apple iTunes, Spotify or wherever you listen to your podcasts: Apple iTunes Podcasts: www.apple.co/3sNeoyf Spotify: www.spoti.fi/39ZmHP3

Check out our brand new Devon & Plymouth Chamber website We’re thrilled to announce that our new and improved Devon & Plymouth Chamber of Commerce website is officially live. It features all the fantastic content from our previous site - but with a fresh new look. The new website is more user-friendly, which means it’s easier to navigate and find the information you need. There’s a clearer and concise home page featuring everything you need to know about

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the Chamber, as well as information about our partners, patrons and members. We’ve also added a number of new sections, including a brand new membership area which allows you to browse all our options and see the depth of the support and benefits we can offer to you and your business. Read all our latest member news, views and resources, and discover more about our dedicated Chamber team and Board - including

Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

contact details. The new site better showcases our highquality events programme - with virtual and in-person dates on our packed schedule. There’s even a dedicated section for our Devon & Plymouth Chamber Awards, which will culminate in a glittering ceremony at Buckfast Abbey this September. If you’ve not yet seen our new site, check it out here: www.devonchamber.co.uk


CHAMBER NEWS

Honour the best of South West business at our Chamber Awards The Devon & Plymouth Chamber of Commerce Business Awards honours the best in entrepreneurship and enterprise. Since it was first introduced, we’re proud to see it become one of the most prestigious events in the South West business calendar. Our 2021 awards hold particular significance in what has been a hugely challenging year for many businesses across the region. Stuart Elford, Chamber Chief Executive, said: “This year has been tough for everyone. “But many businesses have performed remarkably well against all the odds – changing their business model to suit the changing needs of their customers and to fit these extraordinary times. “Our awards are an opportunity to celebrate these outstanding achievements – to recognise the businesses who have thrived and diversified to emerge from the pandemic stronger. “We cannot wait to congratulate your teams on a welldeserved night of celebration in September.” The Chamber Awards offer the perfect opportunity to honour the resilience, innovation and ingenuity of businesses who have not just survived but thrived during the pandemic. Our members have been nominating businesses in the following categories: •

The Planet Saver (Green Business of the Year)

The Quality Trailblazer (Business Diversification Award)

The Growing Visionary (Small Business of the Year)

The Global Player (Export Business of the Year)

The Equality Trailblazer (Diversity & Inclusion Award)

The Digital Innovator (Digital Business of the Year)

The Game Changer (Entrepreneur of the Year)

The Service Quality Leader (Customer Commitment Award)

The Team Builder (Workplace Wellbeing Award)

We’ve also been welcoming nominations for the Steve Whiteway Award, named in honour of the Chamber’s former board director, local businessman and community fundraiser who sadly died last year. This accolade will recognise contributions to the community and projects displaying kindness, integrity and hard work. Our 2021 accolades will be expertly judged, as always, and will culminate in a glittering ceremony at beautiful Buckfast Abbey on Friday, September 24, where you are invited to a gala dinner with entertainment. Tickets and table reservations are available to book now: www.devonchamber.co.uk/ chamber-awards We want to say a huge thank you to our amazing sponsors - including Practice Plus Group, Thomas Westcott Chartered Accountants, Western Union, Frazer Nash Consultancy and Swatpro Academy - without whom we wouldn’t be able to put on events such as this which are so important in honouring the South West business community. You can find out more about our #ChamberAwards on our dedicated website here: www.devonchamberawards.co.uk

TAKE ON OUR CHARITY GOLF DAY CHALLENGE and help make a difference

Devon & Plymouth Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with Boringdon Park Golf Club and lead sponsors FrazerNash Consultancy, would like to invite you to our Charity Golf Day, in association with Jeremiah’s Journey. Following the extension of lockdown restrictions, we have decided to move our event from the original date of June 30 to Thursday, August 5, to ensure the safety of players and sponsors. No matter what your business, gender, age or handicap, we would like to invite you to take part in our first golf day and connect with other businesses whilst having fun and raising money for a great cause. It doesn’t matter if you’re an experienced golfer looking to brush up your swing and show your colleagues your skills, or you’re a novice looking to sharpen up your game and tee off in the company of some great people. Registration starts at 9.30am, with tee times from 10.30am, and there will be FIVE prizes awarded on the day for: • • • • •

The winners Runners-up Longest drive Nearest to the pin Nearest to the ‘gin’ (which is exactly how it sounds!)

Entry costs £190 per team of four and includes bacon rolls on arrival and a barbecue after your round, followed by presentations at around 6pm. Afterwards, the Jeremiah’s Journey team will be hosting an auction/raffle, with some fantastic prizes on offer. The Chamber is thrilled to announce that Frazer-Nash Consultancy will be our headline sponsor for the event. We are also looking for sponsors for all 18 holes - at a cost of £50 per hole - so please do get in touch via the contact details on this page if you would like to support this fantastic cause. And don’t worry if you’re struggling to get a full team together. To avoid anyone missing out, we can help you put together a ‘networking team’ for this fantastic event. If you would like to find out more, simply get in touch with us via email at jasmine.peglar@devonchamber.co.uk

Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

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CHAMBER NEWS

World business debate future of economy at hugely significant C7 Conference The South West’s leading business organisation wrote to the Prime Minister ahead of the G7 summit to ask for leadership in helping businesses build a more sustainable future for trade that operates in harmony with our environment. More than 230 business leaders and academics joined a virtual ‘C7’ conference hosted by British Chambers of Commerce South West (BCCSW) ahead of the G7 in Cornwall. Industry chiefs from chambers of commerce around the world debated what business should demand of the G7 governments at the landmark summit, and drew up a list of five key demands from the event which were sent to Downing Street. The C7 conference was focused on the challenges and opportunities of a truly ‘blue and green’ economy, and the asked to Government include: 1.

2.

3.

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Show businesses a path to a more sustainable future. Guide business to understand the steps needed. Business can help provide the solutions as long as they understand the route needed. Balance regulation with incentive. There is a role for commitments and target setting for both government and business, but there must be a combination of carrot and stick, incentivising and helping business to take the necessary steps. Business needs support, especially as it reels from the impact of the pandemic and adjusts to post-Brexit international trade, so there should be no additional cost burden imposed upon it. Show leadership. Be strong and bold, working closely with likeminded partners who share our values and holding to account those countries that do not. Show solidarity with our G7 partners with a consistent approach to fossil fuels and waste management and reach out to help other countries work towards our goals. Work in partnership with businesses across every sector to help drive us all towards sustainable solutions.

Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

4.

5.

Be fair and free. People and businesses deserve a level playing field that gives opportunity to all. Ensure that the poor are not excluded by digital poverty and make sure that international corporations pay the same tax as local businesses. If 100 Corporations are responsible for 71% of emissions, then do not punish those businesses that are trying their best but go after those that are damaging the planet the most. Allow trade freely around the world and enable it to happen sustainably. Innovate and inform. Share best practice and seek out new ways to drive change in behaviours that are damaging to our planet. Ideas from the C7 conference included asking businesses to file environmental impact reports with their accounts and implementing a traffic light system, similar to that used on food packaging, to show consumers the impact products have on the environment. Work with business to find solutions and share best practice.

Stuart Elford, Chair of BCCSW – the regional affiliation of accredited county chambers in the South West – said: “The C7 conference was significant. Global business leaders united in their asks to governments. It is important that the UK plays a leading role in enabling businesses to make the change that will make our future a more sustainable one. “We need to be able to trade freely around the world in the most sustainable way possible. To do that, businesses need help, guidance and a path to follow. Now, with the eyes of the world on us, is an opportune time to start on that path. “The South West has an incredible opportunity to play a global role in sustainable trade that works in harmony with the world around us – we are uniquely positioned to do so. Business wants to help and BCCSW is prepared to work with the Government to achieve a more sustainable future.”


CHAMBER NEWS

NEW MEMBERS Sinclair Leadership Assessment Limited

Devon and Cornwall - Cyber Protect Unit

www.sinclairstevenson.co.uk The Old Chapel, Bethany, Trerulefoot, Saltash PL12 5DE

Cruisy Campers

www.devon-cornwall.police.uk Cyber Protect Unit Devon and Cornwall Police HQ, Middlemoor, Exeter EX2 7HQ

8 Chestnut close, Braunton EX33 2EH

Nexus Open Systems Ltd

Raw Living Ltd www.rawliving.co.uk 23 The Stables, Ford Road, Totnes TQ9 5LE

www.nexusos.co.uk Vale House, Pynes Hill, Exeter EX2 5AZ

A WARM WELCOME TO OUR NEW MEMBERS

FROM ACROSS DEVON & PLYMOUTH

BLOCK

Golf Access Ltd

www.blockplymouth.co.uk Pynes Hill Business Park, Pynes Hill, Exeter EX2 5JL

www.golfaccessprogram.com 12 Clear View, Saltash PL12 6HB

Improved Way Limited Bowa Medical UK http://www.bowa-medical.co.uk Bremridge House, Ashburton TQ13 7JX

The Job App Azets

CrunchYard

www.azets.co.uk South Molton, Lime Court, Pathfields Business Park EX36 3LH

Seafocal

www.crunchyard.com Plymouth PL6 5QZ

Salcombe Harbour Hotel

www.seafocal.com Gardeners Cottage, Tithe Hill,

BCR Associates Ltd

www.harbourhotels.co.uk/salcombe Cliff Road, Salcombe TQ8 8JH

Churchstow TQ7 3QZ Mantracourt Electronics Ltd www.mantracourt.com The Drive, Farringdon, Exeter EX5 2JB

KBG Chambers www.kbgchambers.co.uk 115 North Hill, Plymouth PL4 8JY

Greenlight Safety Consultancy Ltd

www.bcrassociates.co.uk Peninsula Park, Rydon Lane, Exeter EX2 7XE

Ocean BMW

Cormac Solutions Ltd

Audacious Lives Coaching, Mentoring and Marketing

Bergstrand House, Parkwood Close, Plymouth PL6 7SG

The Old Rectory Pyworthy Translators

Amberon Ltd www.amberontm.com Amberon House Aspen Way, Paignton TQ4 7QR

www.harbourhotels.co.uk/sidmouth Monor Road, Sidmouth EX10 8RU

www.friendshelpingathome.co.uk Friends Helping at Home, 11 Manor Corner, Paignton TQ3 2JB

www.greenlightsc.co.uk

www.thejobapp.com 2nd Floor, 5 High street, Westbury-on-Trym BS9 3BY

Blackhill Engineering Services Ltd www.blackhillengineering.co.uk Blackhill Quarry, Woodbury, Exeter EX5 1JL

Sidmouth Harbour Hotel & spa

FHAH Services Ltd

www.cormacltd.co.uk Higher Trenant, Wadebridge, Cornwall PL27 6TW

www.improvedwaylimited.co.uk 27 Rogers Crescent, Bideford EX39 4FT

www.oceanbmw.com St. Modwen House, Longbridge Road, Plymouth PL6 8LD

www.audaciousl.com 10 Sussex Place, The Hoe, Plymouth PL12HT

Knowthis Limited www.knowthis.agency

Plymouth Science Park, 1 Davy Road, Derriford, Plymouth PL6 8BX Energy Consulting & Contracting Limited www.energy-cc.co.uk Unit 107, Phase 2, Plymouth Science Park, 1 Davy Road, Plymouth PL6 2BX

www.dutchtranslatorsplymtony. com Near Holsworthy, EX22 6LA

Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

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CHAMBER NEWS

Our Devon & Plymouth Chamber Board The Devon & Plymouth Chamber held our Board Elections throughout May, and we are proud to welcome a number of new directors for 2021. Several director places were available this year, with members voting for their chosen candidates via an online ballot.

After much deliberation, we decided that all our new directors were formally appointed at our AGM during the County Conversations event on Friday, June 4. Our Board members are experienced, knowledgeable and leaders in their fields, providing the Chamber and its members with

strategic and practical direction and advice. Together, they help make key decisions on Chamber strategy and each brings a certain specialism that provides expertise to the different functions of the Chamber.

MEET OUR NEW DIRECTORS Geoffrey Rogers

James Greenacre

James Smith

Geoffrey is a Bideford boy, Devon through and through. Born, schooled and qualified as a Chartered Accountant in North Devon before moving to Bristol to work all over the UK for KPMG on international audits. He then joined Allied Breweries as the group financial accountant before moving to Plymouth in the mid 1970s and becoming a partner in a local accountancy practice. There are two highlights to pick out from Geoffrey’s story so far – being Vice Chair of Plymouth Health Authority in the early 1990s – a truly unbelievable experience. And secondly, running the Plymouth Albion Disabled Supporters Group – what lovely warming people to hug and help. He is also a member of PADAN and a Dementia Friend.

As Head of Commercial Operations at Plymouth Argyle, James’s current role requires working with a broad, and everincreasing, portfolio of both internal and external stakeholders across the region – primarily focusing on the commercial side of the business but also collaborating heavily with the Community Trust in the delivery of social outreach schemes, the development of the Academy and an ongoing club-wide ambition of becoming a community focused, sustainable Championship football club. James is passionate about the South West, and as a keen cyclist and sailor (and a dreadful golfer!) the region offers everything he could ask for whilst raising his young family – although there are days where he wishes the hills weren’t quite so punchy!

James spent 22 years in the Royal Navy before launching Primal Europe Ltd in 2012. Since then he has been growing that organisation through Brexit and more recently the pandemic. In 2018, James completed his MSc in Strategic Business Management and became a Fellow in the Chartered Management Institute. In 2020, he launched his own consultancy business, which has been integral in supporting entrepreneurs who want to import and introduce new brands into the UK market. This has included the new Perry eHopper eBike now ranged in GOOutdoors and Wiggle along with the new Perry P4 e-scooter. James also recently completed his PRINCE2 Practitioner course along with his Managing Successful Programmes Course.

Nicola Bidgood

Paul Philpott

Tom Moore

Nicola is Managing Director of Westcountry HR, an independent HR consultancy, and Westcountry Jobs, a recruitment agency, both based at Minerva House in Newton Abbot. She has previously worked in HR in Exeter, Newton Abbot and Plymouth, and has over 15 years’ experience. Nicola decided to take the leap from employment to start up her own business in August 2016 to follow her dream to be an Independent HR Consultant – and she has not looked back.

Paul is Managing Director of Fresh Air Studios, a corporate production company, with national clients like Three, Royal Mail, and two of the top five banks. A former presenter on Plymouth Sound Radio, years ago, he is now mostly known for his love of wine, travel and fitness – in equal doublemeasures.

Tom is the Business Development Director at Acronyms, an IT support company based at Plymouth Science Park. He joined Acronyms in 2014 and in the last seven years has helped build a Sales & Marketing department at the growing Plymouth business. With Tom’s contribution and journey to becoming company director, Acronyms has grown year on year, and celebrated continued growth in 2020 by opening an office in Bristol and acquiring Cornish IT firm IT-OK. Away from the office, Tom has recently learned to scuba dive and enjoys spending weekends diving with his fiancée, Sarah.

Director geoff@tspartners.co.uk

Director hello@westcountryhr.com

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Director james.greenacre@pafc.co.uk

Director paul@freshairstudios.com

Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

Director james@jamessmithgroup.com

Director Tom@acronyms.co.uk


CHAMBER NEWS

THE REST OF OUR BOARD

Richard Stevens Chair chair@devonchamber.co.uk

Tim Jones Vice Chair tim@startpointfinance.co.uk

David Williams Director david@redrok.co.uk

Dr Emily Beaumont Director ebeaumont@glos.ac.uk

Richard Adams Director Richard.adams@plymouth.ac.uk

Craig Moore Director craig.moore@wbd-uk.com

Ian McFadzen Director IMcFadzen@sciencepark.org.uk

Clare Baker Director Clare.Baker@barclays.com

Linda Middleton-Jones Director linda@middleton-jones.com

Pauline Hands Director phands@cityplym.ac.uk

Paul James Treasurer paul.james@cornwallcare.org

Our services include: • • • Guardianship for children • • Pre-paid funeral plans home visits if required. Call today on: 01752

393297 www.maplebrookwills-sw.co.uk

Maplebrook Wills SW Ltd Eden House, Forge Lane, Saltash PL12 6LX

Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

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CHAMBER UPDATE

Plymouth high street awarded £101,290 grant for cultural programme

More than £100,000 has been awarded to Plymouth to help reimagine our city centre through community-led cultural activities and a ‘summer of culture on the high street’. The cash grant will be used over three years – starting with a project this summer working with the local skating community to design inspiring and striking artwork that will reflect how skating has long been a cultural staple of the city centre. It will also be used to help bring empty shops back to life with artistic projects and bring new public art to the city centre through conversations with communities about what artworks Plymouth should celebrate. The money has been given to Plymouth Culture, the organisation which leads on cultural activity and supports the sector in the city. It was awarded by Historic England as part of the Plymouth High Streets Heritage Action Zone (HSHAZ). Plymouth is one of more than 60 high streets to receive a share of £6 million for its cultural programme, to be used from now until March 2024. The cultural programme in Plymouth has three strands: activation, vacancy spaces and public art. Activation will involve using creative and cultural activities to help bring spaces in our historic city centre to life. These spaces include buildings, streets and the inbetween places that provide opportunities for

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Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

cultural encounters. The activities will use both traditional and digital technologies and will involve lots of different art forms to revitalise the area. The four-year-long High Streets Heritage Action Zones’ Cultural Programme is led by Historic England, in partnership with Arts Council England and the National Lottery Heritage Fund. The Cultural Programme aims to make our high streets more attractive, engaging and vibrant places for people to live, work and spend time. Hannah Harris, CEO of Plymouth Culture, says: “We are delighted that we have secured the HSHAZ cultural programme for Plymouth and that we can now launch the programme.

“While we understand the need for immediate action to support the revival of the high street, our programme focuses on linking short-term activity to long-term ambition. “This means that we are working hard to align a number of high-street programmes and partners to make sure that we genuinely reimagine the high street with a focus on creative and cultural activity driving transformation. “This is an opportunity to make a real difference and influence what our high street will look like in the future.” Find out more about the HSHAZ here: www.plymouthculture.co.uk


CHAMBER UPDATE

Mayflower Autonomous Ship aiming to recreate historic 1620 voyage Truly following in the footsteps of the original Mayflower, the Mayflower Autonomous Ship (MAS) unfortunately had to cut short its maiden voyage, days after leaving Plymouth UK. Four centuries ago, the Mayflower and her sister ship, the Speedwell, were some 300 miles clear of Land’s End when the latter began leaking badly and could not risk continuing. The two boats turned about for Plymouth, from where they eventually departed on 16 September 1620. After setting sail from the Devon coast, the pioneering MAS vessel developed a “small mechanical problem” and has since headed back to base to investigate further. A message from MAS, on behalf of the IBM team, read: “After my little Atlantic adventure,

I’m safe and on my way back to base. Big Atlantic adventure coming soon. Thanks to everyone for their support!” With no human captain or onboard crew, the research vessel uses IBM’s automation, AI and cutting-edge computing technologies to assess its status, environment and mission and make decisions about what to do next while at sea. Part of the Mayflower 400 commemorations, its journey across the Atlantic is expected to take approximately three weeks and, if successful, the ship is expected to land in Provincetown, Massachusetts, then make its way to the US port of Plymouth. This pioneering mission is the result of years of work and a global collaboration between marine research non-profit ProMare, IBM and dozens of partners from across industry and academia.

Designed to forge a cost-effective and flexible platform for gathering data about the ocean, MAS400 will help scientists gather the data they need to advance understanding of key global issues affecting ocean health including ocean acidification, microplastics and marine mammal conservation. One of the pieces of scientific equipment on MAS is Hypertaste – an ‘electronic tongue’ developed by IBM Research. The project aims to aid the development of fully autonomous AI systems and applications for use in a variety of industries such as shipping, oil and gas, telecommunications, security and defence, fishing and aquaculture. When its voyage resumes, people from all over the world can follow the ship’s progress via the mission dashboard here www.mas400.com/dashboard#live - which includes live video, maps and data streaming.

Photo by Oliver Dickinson

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Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

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SOUTH DEVON COLLEGE

Apprenticeships: Now is the Time

Emily Tucker, Head of Apprenticeships and Employer Engagement at South Devon College, considers the importance of apprenticeships in rebuilding the economy.

In March, the Chancellor announced a £126 million investment in apprenticeships for the year ahead, tripling the number of opportunities available for young people.  To support this drive to develop the skills needed to reboot our economy as we begin to recover from the impact of Covid-19, the Government is calling for closer relationships between FE Colleges and industry. This is something that South Devon College has always strived to create through its programme of employer engagement,

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working with over 1,000 local and regional employers to offer apprenticeships to help people earn whilst they learn and successfully develop new skills.  This work has continued at pace through what has been an incredibly challenging few months, with employers recognising the importance of training in the recovery of their businesses and the wider economy.  We are proud to have retained 98% of our apprentices since the start of lockdown, providing support for employers and allowing

Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

the apprentices to focus on the study element of their apprenticeships, if they were temporarily restricted from performing their working duties. This year, the team at the college have worked closely with a wide range of businesses, supporting employers through apprenticeship programmes in the toughest conditions imaginable, from the wellestablished hospitality sector to the exciting field of composites engineering.


SOUTH DEVON COLLEGE Hospitality: Supporting the recovery of our most well-established sector The hospitality industry has been hit hard but training and development is key to its recovery. Over the past two years, the college has worked particularly closely with international hotel brands Hilton Hotels and Accor to develop staff for new hotels under development in Torbay, as well as local employers including The Grand hotel, on the development of its hospitality apprenticeship programmes.  Rebecca Davies, Senior Economic Development Officer at the Torbay Development Agency, commented:  “Torbay is seeing huge investments from international hotels, as well as independent

local businesses; it’s a very exciting time. There’s government funding available, as well as financial incentives for apprenticeships, allowing employers to invest in and develop their teams to ensure their businesses are able to bounce back from the impact of the last 12 months, making the most of the huge demand from locals and visitors as restrictions are lifted.” Jody Green, who is studying a Higher Apprenticeship in Hospitality Management at The Grand Hotel in Torquay, said: “When I was made redundant, I felt vulnerable and didn’t know which avenue to choose for my future. The Grand Hotel in Torquay approached me and asked if I would work for them. They offered me

the opportunity to learn more about the management skills I wasn’t quite qualified in from my time in the aviation industry despite being a manager for all those years. “The team at the college’s University Centre worked really closely with the Grand Hotel and they designed an education plan for me over two years. It was a level 4 higher apprenticeship in Hospitality Management and both the hotel and the college were really supportive. I was able to work the hours around my study and similarly the university centre enabled me to study when I wasn’t needed at work, so they worked together.  “The apprenticeship during the lockdown has been a Godsend. It’s given me lots to focus on and plenty of material to read through. I’ve enjoyed learning and I’m excited to come back to the hotel and put into practice everything I’ve learned in lockdown.”

Composites: Upskilling for emerging technologies The South West is known to many for its areas of outstanding natural beauty and great places to work, live and visit; but it is also home to areas of deprivation and has seen industries significantly affected by Covid-19. Access to business support and high-quality education – both academic and vocational - is critical to enabling the area to ‘level up’ economically, and to drive post Covid recovery through creating innovation and talent to create start-ups, build on the capabilities of existing SMEs and create the future industries that will bring productivity and prosperity to the UK.     South Devon College is working in partnership with the National Composites Centre to help businesses in the South West discover how composite materials could

enhance their products and processes, as well as developing a new apprenticeship programme to support in the technical upskilling of employees in this exciting sector.  The new Level 3 Composites Technician apprenticeship  will be attractive to people just starting their post16 training journey through to people with decades of experience looking to upskill or reskill.  Princess Yachts rely heavily on apprenticeships for the continued development of their workforce, particularly to upskill new staff in new technologies. 

Reflecting on lockdown and the impact on the business’s apprentices, Alison Thompson, Head of Learning & Development at Princess Yachts, said: “Last year had our largest intake of apprentices with 66 in total. During that time there was no break in learning for any of our apprentices. We worked very closely with South Devon College who ensured our apprentices were contacted on a regular basis. They took part in online learning and we had individual workshops for them.”

Increased Incentives ending in September The Government’s drive to support skillsbased learning is supported by a significant level of funding that employers should take advantage of. The financial incentive for hiring an apprentice over 25 has been doubled, meaning you will receive £3,000 per apprentice if you hire them before the September deadline.  To further support young people in gaining apprenticeships, an additional £1,000 incentive is available to businesses that hire apprentices aged 16-18.  It’s a challenging time for businesses, young people, and those that want to upskill but the additional financial support will help

significantly. At South Devon College, we have a long history of success and continuous year on year growth in these programmes. With this, the College is a fantastic source of support for employers and apprentices. It is what we and our employer partners have been very successful in, and we look forward to providing more opportunity, support and growth in the South West.  If you are an employer and keen to learn more about how you can access these incredible opportunities, our Apprenticeship and Employer Engagement Team are here to help. 

Visit www.southdevon.ac.uk/apprenticeships to find out more or get in touch by calling 08000 380 123 (Option 3) or emailingemployers@southdevon.ac.uk. Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

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CHAMBER UPDATE

New £45m road improvement scheme will help Devon recover from pandemic A £45 million road improvement project to help boost South Devon’s economy has been confirmed by Devon County Council. The announcement came after the Government backed the county council’s scheme to upgrade the A382 linking Newton Abbot and the A38 with a cash injection of £38 million. Devon County Council leader, John Hart, thanked the Government for its support: “This is an early indication of how we intend to help Devon’s economy recover from the ravages of the pandemic,” he said. The next phase of the ongoing work, on the adjoining A382-A383 link between Forches Cross and Howton Road, will begin later this year. The scheme, which aims to improve safety for cyclists and pedestrians as well as unlocking economic growth, is being funded by the Department for Transport, Devon

A382 County Council, the Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership (HotSWLEP) and Teignbridge District Council. The project includes the widening of the A382 between Trago roundabout and Forches Cross which will increase traffic capacity and ease congestion. This will support the construction of 2,500 new homes in the region and pave the way for the local economy to continue growing in the future.

A new dual carriageway between Drumbridges and Trago roundabout will also be built. And plans for a shared pedestrian and cycle path, along with a bridge to allow them to safely cross, will ensure that pedestrians and cyclists will enjoy better journeys. The green light has also been given to construct the planned Jetty Marsh II connection as part of the scheme, which will provide a new road between Whitehill Cross and West Golds way, with a shared-use path adjacent to the route – reducing traffic on Exeter Road and providing better links to the A38. Cllr Hart added: “I would like to thank the Department for Transport for providing this funding. This is the final stage of a major investment programme for the A382 corridor which is the culmination of several years of investment by Devon County Council.”

Work progressing at pace on new Marsh Barton rail station Work on the new Marsh Barton rail station, which began in April, is progressing at pace. Preparatory works to the site, near to the Energy from Waste plant on the eastern edge of Marsh Barton, Exeter, are well under way. Vegetation has been cleared, existing utilities protected, and a site compound and access road have been created ready for the

next phase. The new Marsh Barton station is being delivered by Graham Construction Ltd and will serve communities living on the rail line in Exeter, Teignbridge, Torbay and East Devon. It will also include the development of a new pedestrian and cycle bridge, which will connect the station and improve safer, active travel choices for

Marsh Barton Rail Station work, education and leisure trips between Alphington, Marsh Barton and the Riverside Valley Park and Exe Estuary.

FUNDING BID SUBMITTED FOR RAIL REINSTATEMENT BUSINESS CASE Devon County Council has submitted a bid for funding to develop the business case for the Tavistock to Plymouth railway. Re-opening the link between Tavistock and Plymouth will encourage people to use rail services, helping to ease congestion on the A386 and reduce carbon emissions. The authority is bidding for a grant from the Ideas Fund

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of the Restoring Your Railway programme. The funding would be used to produce a Strategic Outline Business Case and update extensive survey work

Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

already undertaken on the route. The project will aim to reinstate the disused rail line between Tavistock and Bere Alston to provide hourly rail services through to Plymouth, as well as opening a new single platform railway station at Tavistock next to the 750 dwelling development under construction. Twohourly services between Plymouth and Gunnislake Tavistock Rail Line Viaduct would be maintained.

FOUR NEW WORK HUBS IN DEVON Four new work hubs are being established across Devon with new funding announced for Devon County Council’s awardwinning scheme. The County Council has successfully bid for £640,000 from the Heart of the South West LEP to provide new workspace in some of the local economies hardest hit during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. New work hubs will be created in Great Torrington, Newton Abbot, and Teignmouth, while the existing hub in Tavistock will also be expanded. The expansion of the work hub network will provide an additional 570 square metres of co-working and office space in the county.


CHAMBER NEWS

In partnership with

Plymouth: the Place to Live, Work & Play! Enjoy an evening of questions and good food. Special guest speakers: Steve Hughes, Chief Executive - Plymouth City Centre Company; Lindsey Hall, Co-founder & CEO - Real Ideas; Conrad Humphreys, Founder & Managing Director of Sport Environment

Thursday 30 September 2021, 5.45pm - 9.00pm PL1 Restaurant, City College, Kings Road, PL1 5QG £21* per person, including a two-course meal with wine

BE PART OF IT

01752 305026 @cityplym |

employers@cityplym.ac.uk

*Book and pay online at onlinestore.cityplym.ac.uk

Hosted by the BBC’s David Fitzgerald

Devon Delivers for business success and work/life balance Devon is being showcased as a great place to do business as part of a campaign to attract companies to the county. Devon Delivers, which aims to encourage businesses to relocate to the county, has launched a new video and website to highlight the county’s unique selling points as Devon looks to make a strong economic recovery post-pandemic. For companies considering expanding or relocating, the new Devon Delivers website provides a gateway to all the relevant information, research, premises and support to help businesses discover what makes Devon such an attractive prospect.

This initiative, which is designed to promote Devon to businesses across the UK and worldwide, is supported by Devon County Council. Cllr Rufus Gilbert, Devon County Council’s Cabinet Member for Economy and Skills, explains: “Devon can boast employment, skills and apprenticeships at above the national average, and it is hoped that additional investment will further develop the range and depth of business activity in our county, bolstering our position as a thriving location. “As a Devon business owner myself, I wholeheartedly support this initiative. We’re fortunate to

live and work in what I believe is the best part of the UK, and if Covid-19 has taught us anything it’s that businesses can work anywhere. Devon has everything a business needs to thrive: access to staff, skills and outstanding business support. “Our new website and video highlight exactly what makes Devon such a special place. By demonstrating the merits of Devon to a much wider audience we want to encourage businesses to take the next step and invest. With our beautiful Devon environment and a lifestyle that is hard to beat, why wouldn’t you move your business here?” Devon County Council has

worked with district councils and other partners across the county to ensure the Devon Delivers website is a ‘One Devon’ platform for anyone considering opportunities to locate all or some of their business activity to the area. As well as providing information about each district of Devon and what they have to offer, businesses considering a move can register their interest in a specific location or sector, or they can make a general enquiry. To find out more, please visit the Devon Delivers website here: www.devondelivers.co.uk

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SECTOR FOCUS: TECH

SECTOR FOCUS

THE LATEST NEWS FROM THE REGION’S LEADING SECTORS

Inside the world-class Immersive

Dome The first images have been released giving a sneak peek into the Immersive Dome at the Grade II listed Market Hall in Devonport. 

Developed by Real Ideas Organisation, in partnership with Plymouth City Council and the Institute of Digital Art and Technology at University of Plymouth, the Market Hall is a £7.6 million project which will create a new space for digital, especially those working in immersive and creative applications of technology.  The world-class Immersive Dome is the first of its type (15m diameter, 210 degrees over the top, with a flat floor) in Europe. The only other like it in the world can be found

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Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

at SAT in Montreal, Canada.  Needing just two projectors to cover the full surface of the dome, the tech at the Market Hall is cutting edge and creates a seamless shared virtual reality experience. The bespoke sound system, boasting 19 channels, encases the Dome and adds to what is a truly immersive experience with the power to transport you anywhere in the universe – real or imagined – that you can dream of! Lindsey Hall, Chief Executive of Real

Ideas said: “The Market Hall really is a game changer. It puts Plymouth on the map internationally as a place with an emerging tech cluster around immersive, and here in Plymouth offers incredible experiences and opportunities to people living and growing up in Devonport and the wider city.  “It is without a doubt our most audacious project to date. Not only have we breathed new life into another incredible listed building, but we’ve also brought it into the 21st century. It is immediately relevant


SECTOR FOCUS: TECH

and offers untold opportunity as a place for research, development, exploration, learning, collaboration… and, last but not least, a place to come and have fun!   “I cannot wait to open the doors and let people experience for themselves the magic and wonder of the Market Hall and its Immersive Dome.” Alongside cultural experiences and immersive opportunities in the Dome, the Market Hall will offer creative and collaborative workspace, learning,

workshops, meeting rooms, event spaces, a production suite and a café/bar. Real Ideas has this month committed to support 13 new creative/tech start up business ideas as part of its Start Something Immersive programme. Many of the cohort will be using the Dome alongside business support from Real Ideas to get their idea or project off the ground right here in Plymouth.  Dave Hotchkiss, a Start Something Immersive participant said: “The Market

Hall dome is an amazing facility. The development of 360-degree and immersive visual content have made dramatic leaps in recent years and to have this facility on our doorstep will provide an amazing resource for the development of the creative industries in Plymouth and the wider Southwest.” The Market Hall joins the growing Real Ideas campus of spaces including Ocean Studios and Devonport Guildhall in Plymouth and CSpace in Newquay.

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SECTOR FOCUS: ENERGY

HYDROGEN HAS A PROMISING FUTURE, BUT HOW CAN PORTS BEST EXPLOIT ITS POTENTIAL? By Keir Gravil, Business Manager (Commercial Marine) at Frazer Nash Consultancy One of the many challenges and Hydrogen as a solution to opportunities arising from the scramble to decarbonisation decarbonise is that there are many methods To meet 2050 targets for decarbonisation, available to us to achieve net zero. up to 25% of our energy will come from The complexity is often in making the right green hydrogen (i.e. hydrogen that has been decisions at the right time and choosing created using renewable sources of energy). the correct path to travel. Many One thing we have been organisations are enthusiastic investigating here at Frazer-Nash “Many in their ambition to head is the potential for hydrogen organisations are towards a less polluted to play a big part in the enthusiastic in their world, but they are often decarbonisation of our cautious to start down ambition to head towards economy. We believe it a path that could be a less polluted world, but is a powerful and flexible the wrong one. they are often cautious to start tool in our arsenal to Indeed, the irony of down a path that could be the combat climate change. decarbonisation is that Indeed, with Frazer-Nash’s wrong one.” the paths that lead to it systems approach to solving Steve Livermore are often hazy and gazing Frazer-Nash Senior complex problems, we’ve into a future of net zero Consultant been asking ourselves how technology is difficult. What hydrogen can be, and should be technologies do we use? What used to reduce emissions from ports and is the correct solution, and when should their wider supply chains. we implement it? All the answers to these The first step in understanding the right questions are unique to each organisation, net zero path to choose is to understand and here at Frazer-Nash we’ve been giving what a port is for. Ports are the way our them a lot of thought.

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Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

economy links itself to the world, importing and exporting millions of tonnes of goods each year and connecting us to the global economy. Technologies that enable ports to achieve net zero status need to make the job of a port easier and benefit their ability to connect our economies to the rest of the world. Given ports are some of the most internationally connected sites in the country, they have opportunities to enable the hydrogen economy to take root and grow, allowing them to achieve net zero status and enhance their operations. Indeed ports have the potential to be a ‘hydrogen economy enabler’ linking users and exporters to producers and the wider supply chain, or even enabling other industries (such as nonrenewable offshore energy) to transition to net zero. Frazer-Nash has been investigating the benefits of hydrogen in the ports area, supporting Western Isles Council on the feasibility of being a hydrogen hub. Unlike other industries, many ports have the real estate and space to be able to develop hydrogen successfully. Not only this,


SECTOR FOCUS: ENERGY but the connections to the supply chain and wider hinterland are already there. Hydrogen liquefaction and regassification, ammonia handling and storage, electricity generation from hydrogen sources, all these ideas and possibilities are primed to be exploited in the ports and harbours sector.

technologies that solve existing problems, through to thinking of potential new problems that will need solving, uncertainty is not the insurmountable challenge it is often thought to be. Hydrogen storage, material embrittlement, safety perspectives, logistics modelling and transportation are all areas where we’ve been providing support and Overcoming To meet fresh thinking. Equally as barriers to 2050 targets for important is the question development and decarbonisation, up who can I help and how implementation can I enable others to to 25% of our energy However even though start down the same will come from green hydrogen is a very path? promising solution to hydrogen Opportunities to our emissions problems, Figures from the Energy develop technology are there are barriers to its Systems Catapult more likely to succeed when development. Hydrogen we’re all working together. infrastructure can be expensive, Ports working as enablers for and its development within ports other industries to decarbonise will can often be limited to ‘easy wins’ owing to provide synergies that reduce the costs and the potential cost of developing hydrogen risks associated with hydrogen infrastructure. infrastructure. Therefore, government If ports can enable energy companies to grow policies that invest in areas such as hydrogen their hydrogen technologies, the path to the handling and transportation infrastructure are hydrogen economy becomes a lot easier. key to reduce the risks in travelling down the Ultimately, support from central government hydrogen path. is key. From a ports perspective, the most Without major policy shifts to focus on important question is what investments supporting a nationwide hydrogen-based make sense now and what make sense in economy, it is likely that hydrogen will remain the future? To answer this question is not a local affair confined to those areas with easy, but we have a lot of experience helping the relatively niche demands for hydrogen people to start down the road by guiding rather than a powerful national solution to their thinking. our decarbonisation plans. Only time will tell From the development of viable where we’ll end up.

Summary – Why hydrogen is a good solution So why is hydrogen a good option for ports to explore further?

1. Hydrogen is flexible, it can be used

as a fuel for ship propulsion, but it can also be distributed around a port and the port’s hinterland to benefit local industry and the wider national energy mix.

2. Ports have potential to act as

hydrogen hubs and processing areas, especially for liquefaction and regassification of hydrogen or its processing from compounds such as Ammonia or Methane.

3. There is potential for hydrogen to

generate a surplus of energy, which can be exported and improve energy security for the UK.

4. The flexibility of hydrogen means that collaboration is possible, reducing the risks and pitfalls of technology development.

5. With government investment,

hydrogen can be a nationwide solution to the problems facing sustainability targets and be a valuable part of our energy mix.

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SECTOR FOCUS: FINANCE

Could technology be the key to recovery in the hospitality sector? New technology could play a crucial role in getting hospitality businesses on the road to recovery, says Adam Croney, Partner at Thomas Westcott Chartered Accountants. We can be proud of our hospitality businesses here in Devon and the sector is hugely important to the local economy. Sadly, restaurants, pubs, hotels and cafes have been cited many times as the businesses that have been hit hardest by restrictions during the pandemic. We have been supporting our hospitality clients through the challenges and what is clear is that those businesses that have adapted and innovated have fared best. Being open to new ways of working and embracing new technology will be crucial to the sector’s recovery in the coming months. Many restaurants, pubs and hotels still operate with manual systems but digital technology could play a crucial role in their future success.

Working smarter, not harder Hoteliers, restauranteurs and their employees work incredibly long hours. Those who have been on furlough may have had the chance to reflect and consider a lifestyle change. Wellbeing is now a priority for many of our clients and that means working smarter and being more efficient. To achieve that, businesses will need to move from manual to digital systems. Scheduling complex employee work patterns and managing payroll has always been a headache for hospitality business owners. New technology means they can now create interfaced joined-up work schedules and payroll systems. That not only makes it easier to create rotas,

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by instantly showing staff availability, but also reduces the risk of payroll errors.

Improving efficiencies Food and beverage businesses operate in a fast-paced environment with a high volume of invoices as a result of fresh items being delivered on a daily basis, from multiple suppliers. Managing payments can therefore be a time consuming and stressful task. The right software allows business owners to check their finances anytime, anywhere by providing an instant and up-todate snapshot of cashflow. It can also provide an automated payment system, reducing the amount of time spent managing invoices.

Becoming a destination Restaurants and hotels have traditionally been seasonal, relying on key events, such as the summer tourist season and Christmas, to carry them through downtimes. But one thing we have learned over the last year is that we cannot take anything for granted. Amidst so much uncertainty and the threat of future lockdowns, hospitality businesses can no longer rely on future events so many are overhauling their seasonal approach. Some are focusing on creating special events – perhaps themed around a particular cuisine or offering customers an educational experience. This could be a smart way to bring in revenue in quieter times.

Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

So, how can digital technology help restaurants become a destination? Well, it starts with getting a good handle on margins to identify the source of profits and losses. Software systems provide constant, up-todate view of income, expenditure and stock. Monitoring this data helps pinpoint downtimes, which can be a starting point for finding opportunities to address potential periods of loss.

Embracing e-commerce Many restaurants have diversified during the pandemic. Some have offered takeaway meals for the first time, while others have created cook at home meal kits or sold wine or food items online for delivery. I think this trend of branching out into e-commerce will continue after the pandemic. With growing numbers of restaurants taking bookings online, there is potential to expand the e-commerce offering to include cook books and high end food items. To do this successfully, the right technology is crucial.

systems that will enable them to deliver highly targeted marketing campaigns. Use of point of sale technology has accelerated in recent years and customers increasingly expect to be able to pay via an app. Many hospitality businesses are responding with new point of sale software that syncs with accounting and CRM systems. This not only enhances the customer experience, by making it easier for them to pay, it also cuts down on administrative work and has the potential to support your marketing strategy. We will, sadly, lose some of our hospitality businesses as a result of the difficulties the sector has faced. However, my experience of working with restaurants, hotels and pubs is that there is a sense of optimism about the future. Those businesses that focus on the opportunities out there – including new digital solutions – are the ones that are most likely to thrive.

www.thomaswestcott.co.uk

Marketing your business I firmly believe that people will be choosier as they return to restaurants and will seek out those places that offer an experience, rather than just a meal. Restaurants and hotels that are running events and expanding into e-commerce are already tapping into this shift and can now develop customer relationship management (CRM)

Adam Cowley


SECTOR FOCUS: FINANCE

UK economy now recovering rapidly By Malindi Myers, Bank of England Agent for the South West

The Covid-19 pandemic has been affecting us all for more than a year now. My fellow Agents and I know that those businesses that rely heavily on being able to have customers visit them in person – for instance, the hospitality and tourism sectors right across the SW – have been particularly hard hit. And as my contacts across the South West have been telling me for much of the past year, with less money coming in, businesses have generally cut their investment spending to save cash. Many people have spent less than usual, too – partly because they haven’t had all the usual opportunities to do so, and partly because some of them have lost their jobs and many

more have been very worried about losing theirs. Here in the South West, the unemployment rate has risen to 4.1% in the three months to the end of February this year from 3.1% in the same period a year ago, although the Government’s furlough scheme has gone a long way to reduce the effect of the pandemic on jobs. In the early months of this year, the UK went back into lockdown, to halt the spread of coronavirus, with renewed tightening of restrictions on activity. But the fall in spending during the latest lockdown was much smaller than it was during the first lockdown last year, as people and businesses have become more adept at operating within the restrictions. And with a growing proportion of the UK population being vaccinated and infection rates falling, restrictions are now being loosened again, allowing businesses to reopen more fully. It appears likely that being vaccinated is making people, some of whom will have saved money during lockdown, increasingly confident about going out and spending. In addition, as we note in our Agents’ summary of business conditions in the Bank’s latest Monetary Policy Report (MPR),

published earlier this month, of our quantitative easing (QE) we’re hearing that some programme, we are helping businesses are being encouraged maintain low interest rates to bring forward their investment on people’s mortgages and spending on plant and machinery businesses’ loans. in response to tax breaks We don’t intend to raise Bank announced in the recent Budget. Rate or reduce QE until we have The summary also notes that clear evidence that the economy our contacts across a range is making significant progress of business sectors say that towards a full recovery and their job cuts have largely been inflation is returning sustainably completed, and a growing to target. number say that they’re hiring As the economy recovers and again. the effect of last year’s falls in oil A reduced risk of job losses and gas prices fades, we expect should further support people’s inflation (the pace of price rises), confidence and spending. which is currently just below 1%, All told, the recovery is to return to our 2% target. already underway, and the level Even though a strong recovery of economic activity is looking is underway and vaccinations stronger than we thought only a have reduced the risk of few months ago. another downturn, The Bank’s latest the future path of forecast shows the the economy ...being economy getting remains vaccinated is back to where uncertain. it was before So we can’t making people the pandemic, take our eye in terms of off the ball. increasingly total spending, And we, the confident in around the end Bank’s Agents, of this year. will continue spending The prompt and to gather the substantial action we intelligence that have taken in response to keeps policy-makers here the pandemic is underpinning at the Bank in touch with what’s that recovery. going on in the South West and By keeping Bank Rate at the rest of the UK. the record low of 0.1% and continuing with the expansion

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SECTOR FOCUS: LEGAL

What the extension of the furlough scheme means for your business The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme has now been extended until 30 September, 2021. Here, Womble Bond Dickinson answers some of the most frequently asked questions. What can employers claim on the furlough scheme? For periods ending on or before 30 June 2021, employers can claim 80% of an employee’s usual salary for hours not worked, up to a maximum of £2,500 per month. From 1 July 2021 employers can claim 70% of an employee’s usual salary for hours not worked, up to a maximum of £2,187.50 per month, and will pay the other 10% themselves. From 1 August, employers can claim 60% of an employee’s usual salary for hours not worked, up to a maximum of £1,875 per month, and will pay the other 20% themselves.

What will employers have to pay? Employers will have to pay the cost of employer National Insurance Contributions and pension contributions, together with holiday pay for any holiday that the employee takes (ie the difference between 80% and 100% of pay). From 1 July employers will also have to pay the contributions set out above.

Who can employers claim for? For periods ending on or before 30 April 2021, employers can claim for employees who were employed on 30 October 2020 as long as they made a PAYE RTI submission to HMRC between 20 March and 30 October 2020 notifying a payment of earnings for that employee. For periods starting on or after 1 May 2021, employers can claim for employees who were employed on 2 March 2021 as long as they made a PAYE RTI submission to HMRC between 20 March 2020 and 2 March 2021.

Can employers re-employ employees they have made redundant and furlough them? If an employer made an employee redundant or they stopped working for the employer on or after 23 September 2020, the employer can re-employ them and put them on furlough.

Can employers top up wages to 100% if they want to? Employers can continue to top up wages if they wish.

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Does the employer have to have previously claimed under the Scheme in order to use it? There is no requirement to have previously claimed for an employee before 30 October 2020 to claim for periods from 1 November 2020. Similarly, there is no requirement to have previously claimed for an employee before 2 March 2021 to claim for periods starting on or after 1 May 2021.

Do employees have to have been furloughed previously in order to be included in a claim? No. You can furlough an employee for the first time, provided they were on the payroll at the correct time.

When can claims be made? The last day employers can submit or amend claims for periods ending on or before 31 October 2020 is 30 November. Employers can claim from 11 November 2020 for claim periods starting on or after 1 November.

Do you need to agree furlough with employees? The rules on agreeing furlough are the same as pre-1 November 2020. Furlough agreements need to be put in place before the start of the relevant claim period but an employer should be able to update an earlier furlough agreement.

Can you make furloughed employees redundant? You can claim for a furloughed employee who is serving notice up to the end of November 2020. However, from 1 December employers cannot claim for any day that an employee is serving contractual or statutory notice, including for retirement and resignation. If you have any queries, please get in touch with your usual Womble Bond Dickinson contact.


SECTOR FOCUS: INTERNATIONAL TRADE

Helping our members to connect, grow and succeed worldwide Womble Bond Dickinson (WBD) has been advising clients on a truly global scale for decades, so we’re extremely proud to announce them as the Chamber’s newest International Trade partner, alongside International Trade Matters.

The WBD network and reach has grown significantly in recent years, and the firm now boasts 26 offices across the UK and US. Through a multidisciplinary team, WBD is able to provide support in relation to the full range of legal issues affecting FTSE 100 and SME businesses in the UK and US in relation to their business affairs that are governed by English law and US state and federal laws. The firm also has strong relationships beyond the US, particularly in Europe where it has a strategic alliance with Redeker Sellner Dahs in Germany.

In addition, WBD has access to quality-tested local counsel in more than 120 countries through the firm’s association with Lex Mundi, the world’s largest association of independent law firms. Being part of the Lex Mundi network allows the firm to provide its clients with quick access to high-quality, reliable global legal resources at top-tier, full-service law firms as they require. WBD has a well-established network and is uniquely placed to connect businesses with intermediaries, banks and local tax advisors. For many years, the firm’s International Trade team in offices across the UK has worked to develop a network of advisers of complementary export support services, so clients and contacts can have direct access to a pool of resources of experts and specialists.

Since the decision was reached by the UK to leave the EU, the firm has developed a number of key relationships with experts and consultants to advise clients on post-Brexit matters. International trade is increasingly important to businesses across the South West. Brexit has had and continues to have its influence; and Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s announcement that Plymouth will be the home of one of England’s eight Freeports opens up a wealth of opportunities for our region. WMB is highly supportive of the government’s Freeport initiative, and it was fantastic to see Plymouth as one of the eight selected locations. The decision shows a real willingness to take concrete steps to level up the country and will provide a vital boost towards the regeneration of the South West and also support the region’s post COVID-19 economic and social recovery. From the work being done around Freeports, there is clear potential for the initiative to support the regions in which WBD operates up and down the country. The firm has had the opportunity of representing a broad crosssection of the stakeholders and is keen to support the numerous entities that need to work in collaboration across the country to ensure the vision for our local economies becomes a reality.

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SMALL BUSINESS: TOOLKIT

Identify the health and safety risks within your business Andy Appleton, Commercial Manager at SA Safety Limited, outlines your health and safety obligations as an employer. Employers have legal responsibilities under the Act and each health and safety regulation (and there are a few!). But it all boils down to the fundamental need to prevent harm to those who may be affected by your work. These employer duties apply to directors, business owners, and self-employed persons. If you are an employer you should be aware that employer responsibilities do not only apply to employees. They can also apply to others. Visitors. Temporary workers. Clients. Employees of other employers working in shared premises or site. Even members of the public. Below is a summary of employer health and safety responsibilities: • • • • • •

• • • • •

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Ensure the health, safety and welfare of employees Put in place safe systems of work Provide a safe working environment Use safe plant and equipment Safe use of articles and substances Provide employees and others with health and safety information, instruction, training and supervision Produce a health and safety policy Carry out risk assessments Develop emergency procedures Provide competent HSE advice where necessary Comply with requirements of health and safety regulations

These are the general health and safety responsibilities of every employer. They apply to every business in the UK, of any size or type. These general responsibilities are laid out in two key pieces of health and safety legislation: The Health and Safety at Work etc. Act and the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations.

Risk assessments Every employer must conduct a risk assessment to identify potential health and safety hazards. They are then required to act on it to minimise risks to their staff or anyone else at their workplace. Risk assessment is the cornerstone of an employer’s management of health and safety. Under the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999, employers must make a “suitable and sufficient” assessment of risks to health and safety. There are five steps to carrying out a risk assessment:

Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

1.

2. 3.

Identify all potential hazards that could cause harm. These might be mechanical or psychosocial. Work out who might be harmed by the hazards and how. Consider how likely it is that someone will be harmed, and how serious the harm might be. Based on this information, introduce measures to control the risk “insofar as is reasonably practical”.

4.

5.

Employers with five or more members of staff are required to record the significant findings of the risk assessment in writing. Keep the risk assessment under review to ensure that control measures continue to be applied and to take account of any changes, such as new working practices or machinery.

Additional information is available directly from the Health & Safety Executive website here: www.hse.gov/workers/employers.htm

SA Safety has over 20 years of experience in the Risk Management industry. We provide consultancy on Health & Safety, Risk Assessments, Methods Statements, Evacuation Planning and bespoke training programmes to deliver expert solutions to small- and medium-sized enterprises for a cost-effective way to ensure compliance and peace of mind.


SECTOR FOCUS: SKILLS

Advance your business with FREE training from SMART SKILLS can help your business to identify skills gaps in your existing workforce and provide the skills training you need to become more resilient during this economic crisis and beyond.

Funded by the European Social Fund, SMART SKILLS provides no-cost training solutions to upskill your staff and advance your business. The range of skills support includes all levels from introductory through to full higher-level qualifications.

What’s on offer? A range of flexible training solutions to meet sector and local demand: • CMI Leadership and Management • Digital Masterclasses and Bootcamps • Food Businesses Programme • Green Energy - Electric Vehicle Charging Maintenance and Solar Photovoltaic • Composites • Employment Related Skills and Practical Work-Related Skills • Bespoke Training

Case study Roshani shares her experience of the recent digital masterclasses from SMART SKILLS, delivered by SMART Partner City College Plymouth. The series of masterclasses included how to create quality adverts, film, and audio to promote your business. Roshani is in the process of setting up a new social enterprise business. “I attended all three masterclasses and collectively they provided the perfect balance I was searching for and needed as a catalyst for my business. I recognise that even if I decide to outsource creative work in the future, it is still essential to have an understanding of design, film and sound.

SMART SKILLS HUB The SMART SKILLS HUB provides a range of services to SMEs across Devon, including: • Comprehensive information • Advice and guidance • Training needs analysis • Skills training • Skills brokerage service We can help to match opportunities to pathways into education, training,

The masterclasses significantly increased my knowledge in a short timeframe, and more importantly gave me confidence and belief in myself. The masterclasses have saved me money and a significant amount of time. Until now, my skills were self-taught but there is only so much you can learn from You Tube tutorials. The masterclasses provided just the right blend of theory and practical experience and

apprenticeships, employment, work experience, volunteering and self-employment.

were delivered at an ideal pace. I would

4 reasons to upskill your staff

and develop a digital presence to attend

1.

Gain a competitive advantage

recommend to anyone wanting to build these workshops”.

2. Keep up with industry changes 3. Future-proof your business 4. Create a happier workforce

Contact us today Our expert SMART SKILLS Advisers are on hand to guide you through the skills and training options available to your business and link you with the relevant training options. Contact our SMART SKILLS HUB team today.

Tel: 0800 9755111 (Select option 6) Email: SMARTSKILLS.HUB@cswgroup.co.uk Visit the SMART SKILLS website for more information: www.smart-skills-hub.co.uk

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SECTOR FOCUS: SKILLS

STRATEGIC INTENT TO GUIDE US TO BECOMING THE LEARNING DESTINATION OF CHOICE By Jackie Grubb, Principal, City College Plymouth City College Plymouth has launched its new Vision and Purpose, which will lead the way as we begin an ambitious journey of transformation - a journey we are inviting you all to be a part of. It has been two years since I was interviewed for the position of Principal and Chief Executive at the College. As part of that process, I had to share my vision and my ambitions for this fantastic organisation. At the time, the nation was largely focused on Brexit and the uncertainties of securing a deal with the EU. No one could have imagined that, in little over a year, Brexit wouldn’t be the biggest challenge facing our

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country. I’m hopeful the success of the vaccine programme means the end of the pandemic is now in sight, but as we enter a period of regrouping and recovery, a clear pathway for the College is needed now more than ever, and I am incredibly pleased we have this in our ten-year, Strategic Intent, with our Vision and Purpose acting as our own North Star. It has been a team effort to get to this stage, and I am grateful to all of the talented students, staff and stakeholders who have contributed. Envisioning the next ten years for a place like City College Plymouth isn’t a small task, and it has been reassuring

Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

to see a lot of our aims mirrored in the Skills and Post-16 Education Bill. 2021 is quickly becoming the year of the further education college, with the Government finally recognising just how important we are to the local communities we serve and the role we play in supporting our local economies. During the Queen’s Speech on 11 May, the Government made a landmark promise that will benefit tens of thousands - possibly even millions - of adults who do not hold a level 3 qualification. This promise is further acknowledgement of just how essential colleges are as we start to emerge for the

challenges of the past 17 months. Providing adults with access to lifelong learning is going to be integral to our nation’s recovery. We have been on the pathway towards a skills-led curriculum for a while and the relationships we share with our employer partners continue to strengthen. But we are also very aware that this is an ongoing process - a continual cycle of review and implementation. Unlocking the powers of digital and greater utilisation of the latest technology was always going to have a starring role in our Strategic Intent, but when our world was turned upside down as a result of the partial closure of schools and


SECTOR FOCUS: SKILLS colleges, we were forced to begin rolling out our plans with 24 hours’ notice. We had already developed strong capability by partnering with Google to support our digital offer and investing in our staff with training, this made it possible for us to quickly respond to the opportunity the lockdown presented to be truly innovative with our approach to providing high-quality education. The College is committed to improving the digital skills of not just our students and staff, but also those of the wider community. The first stage is the creation of our new Digital Village: an inspiring place for students, staff and the community to collaborate, share and learn, and will ultimately transform the digital culture of the College. Another vital part of the Skills and Post-16 Education Bill was the role of positive mental

health and wellbeing - which is something of a cornerstone for our Strategic Intent. Fostering good mental health is part of our commitment to students, employers and the wider community. We will not only provide them with the skills our students need to succeed in their careers, but we will develop their resilience and build their self-esteem. Developing a culture that champions positive mental health starts with our own people, and we are focusing on this more than ever. Not only are we pleased to provide staff with a range of support services and wellbeing activities, we are also giving managers the tools, skills and knowledge they need to lead healthy, happy and productive teams with opportunities like the Making a Difference leadership programme. Our digital strategy plays a key role here, too, as we look

at innovative ways to reduce workload, improve efficiency and empower our staff by providing them with the skills needed to unlock the full potential that is offered as a result of living in the digital age. With COVID restrictions easing, we are pleased to welcome back our employer partners to a series of conferences taking place in the summer that will allow us to continue to grow our relations and help us to pave the future of training in the engineering,

health, and construction sectors. We want to improve connectivity, not just among students and staff, but with the wider community; but this starts with dialogue, and we are always looking for new partners who share this vision of making Plymouth and the surrounding area the place to live, work and thrive. If you are interested in being part of City College Plymouth’s transformation, we would love to hear from you.

To attend one of our conferences, which include breakfast, please e-mail employers@cityplym.ac.uk Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

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SECTOR FOCUS: CONSTRUCTION

Regeneration project starts to take shape As lockdown tentatively eases once more and businesses begin to get back on their feet, local development projects are once again beginning to pick up pace. One such development is YMCA Plymouth’s regeneration project, which is aiming to revitalise its sports and activity centre on Honicknowle Lane, previously known as the Kitto Centre. The redevelopment will be the biggest change to the centre since it was built in 1974, seeing the introduction of a new spin studio, gym and modernised facilities. Thanks to Devon and Plymouth Chamber of Commerce’s Peer-to-Peer Network Programme, YMCA’s development has got a

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boost, with help from Plymouth-based local engineering consultants Services Design Solution. The Chamber mentoring programme pairs business leaders together to support them in developing their business during challenging times. YMCA Plymouth enrolled on the programme to seek support with its transformation both as a centre and

Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

more widely as a business. After working together on the programme, SDS Managing Director, Shaun Hoppins offered to further help YMCA by providing free mechanical and engineering consultancy work, usually worth around £6,000. Tom Lavis, CEO of YMCA Plymouth said: “As a local charity going through a challenging but exciting time, we are extremely grateful for the support we’ve received from Shaun and SDS. Their knowledge and experience have helped us to move our project forward while saving a considerable sum of money at the same time. We are incredibly thankful to them as well as the Chamber for providing the scheme that put us together.” Shaun Hoppins said: “SDS are committed to supporting local communities and have donated 1% of turnover to local charities across the South West. The peer-to-peer programme offered us the opportunity to listen to the YMCA’s exciting plans on their existing site. We were delighted to offer our free support to help their aspirations become more tangible. We look forward to the official opening and celebrating how business collaboration can deliver fantastic results!” Find out more about the Chamber’s peer to peer networking programme by contacting Head of Member Services Helen Hart via helen.hart@devonchamber.co.uk


SECTOR FOCUS: CHARITY

Burts Snacks forms RNLI partnership as it looks to grow after pandemic Crisp-maker Burts Snacks is confident of bouncing back strongly during the summer months after sales were hurt by the lockdown of the hospitality sector during the Covid pandemic. The Plymouth-headquartered company, which also has a key factory in Leicester, suffered when pubs, bars, delis, restaurants and cafes were forced to close during three lockdowns. But with some key supermarket contracts, the business was able to weather the Covid storm and is now hoping to make up for lost ground. The company, which invested heavily in both its plants during the lockdown and is planning more investment, is launching a £1m poster advertising campaign in the South West this summer and has some other “exciting” developments planned, though is keeping them under wraps at the moment. And it comes as the Burts forms a partnership with the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI), which will see, over the course of two years, Burts raise money for the charity through sales of its crisps, which will be available in RNLI shops, and help it raise awareness of how to enjoy the outdoors safely, and in particular, how to stay safe at the beach. Dave McNulty, who took over as managing director from David Nairn in 2020, said: “The past 14 months have been a testing time, but the business is quite well insulated. “The out-of-home trade, and hospitality trade, felt the pain, as we were not able to trade in that area, but our supermarket business insulates us, and that is very buoyant.” Sales, therefore, remained fairly static, Mr McNulty said, but the firm was able to continue production at its two plants and only furloughed a small number of employees from the sales team, and brought them back quickly. Burts also invested in its Plymouth and Leicester sites, where it employs a total of 364 people, and Mr McNulty said: “We have put new equipment into both to increase our capacity all round. We work tirelessly on innovation, and work with local ingredients.” He said the Leicster plant, acquired when Burts merged with Savoury and Sweet in 2019, was key to the operation and said: “It’s going from strength to strength. We

have built out capacity at that plant and continue to invest in it. We will invest more at the end of the year. We are delighted with its progress.” Burts is also now working on some new ideas, which could be about “product, flavours or formats”, but Mr McNulty said they were top secret for now. He would only say: “We have some really exciting things in the pipeline, looking to build on the strength of the Burts brand.” But Mr McNulty is very upbeat about the prospects for 2021 and said: “As we emerge, and particularly in the South West, we are looking forward to a fabulous summer as we open up. “We have a £1m poster campaign this summer in the South West, to further build the brand.” Prior to the pandemic arriving in the UK in early 2020, Burts Snacks had seen extensive growth, of 300% over five years and a 15% hike in sales in 2019. As part of its partnership with the RNLI, the company, founded in 1997, commissioned research that showed 75% of Brits are expecting to visit a UK beach or the coast between April and September 2021. The study said the South West is set to be the most visited UK region for staycations this year, with one in seven (14%) of UK holidaymakers planning to visit the region. Yet only 55% of the public are confident that they would be able to float if they fell into open water, said the study. In 2020, RNLI lifeguards saved 110 lives,

Burts Snacks is teaming up with Royal National Lifeboat Institute to promote safety

aided 25,172 people and responded to 10,687 incidents. RNLI lifeguards patrol more than 240 beaches across the UK and about 100 in the South West. As part of the partnership, Burts and the RNLI will work together to educate beachgoers on the dangers of the sea by printing its key Float To Live messaging on the packaging of two of the brand’s most popular products, Sea Salt and Sea Salt & Vinegar. Mr McNulty said: “The RNLI is an organisation which aligns closely with us as a business thanks to our geographical heritage and our love for the outdoors. By supporting the RNLI we hope to play a role in supporting local communities and ensuring people enjoy the summer safely. Steve Instance, RNLI regional water safety lead for the South West RNLI added: “Partnerships like these are integral to helping us raise the funds and awareness that we need to help reduce risks and save lives across the UK.”

Burts Snacks MD Dave McNulty, front right, launching a partnership between the firm and the RNLI, at Bude in Cornwall

Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

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SECTOR FOCUS: MOTORING

Cool cat is clean and mean By Stuart Elford, Chamber Chief Executive The name Jaguar has always been very evocative to me. I remember my dad’s pride at owning his first XJ and the smell of the leather and it had two petrol tanks (two!) and two filler caps - it was that thirsty. So it was with genuine intrigue that I approached Jaguar’s new I-PACE, which promises to be a very different beast. I have driven plug-in hybrids before but never a pure electric, so this was going to be quite an experience. Having not seen one up close I was itching to get my hands on it but had a tantalising wait as the team at Roger Young Jaguar Land Rover in Saltash gave the vehicle a thorough clean and disinfection before handing it over.

My first thought was that this is a very beautiful car, not something you can say about a lot of SUVs; it is sleek and purposeful with real presence. The remote unlocking brings the flush handles out from the large door which allow easy entry. Slipping onto the sumptuous leather seats the cabin immediately feels cosy and comfortable without being cramped. The handover was quick as the controls are very intuitive and the central control screen is the same as the one

in the Defender I test drove, so it was simple to connect my phone, set the Sat Nav, adjust the climate control (that has pre-conditioning functionality) and set off. My immediate reaction was how utterly silent and smooth it was. I wasn’t at all distracted by the display, which you can customise to show any combination of information you want, or the fact that this was all electric. I was soon turning onto the A38 and thought I would test the acceleration. Wow. Just wow. 0-60mph comes up in just 4.5 seconds. It brought a huge grin to my face and I had to do it a few times before I stopped saying wow out loud. This cool cat is quiet and quick as well as clean and mean. While the acceleration reminds me of the moment in the Star Trek movies when they select warp drive and Captain Kirk says, “punch it” before everything outside seems to go all blurry, in fact you feel you have total control in a way that is hard to explain. The 90kWh battery is positioned within the floor, between the axles, giving a low centre of gravity and near perfect weight distribution. This combined with the permanent four-wheel drive, the precise steering, and the nimble and taught chassis makes you feel very ‘at one’ with the car. I had to stop in the city centre and thought I would be

nervous parking a car that costs more than my first house, but in fact the camera and parking technology is so advanced that you can see the car and perimeter from every side. A myriad of cameras stitches together the pictures to give you a real time view as if you were outside the I-PACE looking towards it from above or any angle you select; it really is quite magical. Having parked outside my old office I had hoped to bump into someone I knew but no such luck! Walking away I glanced back in admiration - this is one easy and very pleasing car to drive. I didn’t stop long as I was keen to get back behind the wheel. Taking her on the open road I toyed with the various drive modes: dynamic; comfort; eco; and rain/ice/snow mode. The dynamic mode firms up the suspension, steering and throttle response to make the car ‘snappier’ or you can waft about

in the gentler comfort mode. Eco mode is self-explanatory as it increases range and the rain/ snow/ice mode improves grip in slippery conditions. Speaking of range, when I picked the car up it was charged to 85% and was showing more than 200 miles range. I was very pleasantly surprised at how little the battery ran down, despite my ‘enthusiastic’ test driving, which may have been assisted by the enhanced configurable regenerative braking. The car has a published range of 292 miles and the Sat Nav can guide you swiftly to the increasing number of convenient charge points. I won’t go into the technicalities of charging an electric vehicle, but with an all-electric Jaguar I-PACE, a 50kW rapid DC charging point will deliver up to 39 miles of range from 15 minutes. A 100kW rapid DC charging point will deliver up to 78 miles of range from 15 minutes. I stopped at the office and picked up Paul from pbmedia who was doing the photography. Pulling away at the lights I gave him a demo of the acceleration. He laughed out loud and said:

“Wow. That is incredible…so fast, but it feels totally controlled.” I would like to think he was talking about my skilful driving, but in fact he too was struck with how completely safe and secure the I-PACE makes you feel. Stopping on the moors for

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Summer 2021 Chamber Profile


SECTOR FOCUS: MOTORING VEHICLE AS TESTED: •

Jaguar I-Pace SE EV400

Fuji White with Ebony grained leather sport seats with Ebony/Ebony interior

Open differential with Torque Vectoring by Braking

Electric Parking Brake (EPB)

Premium LED headlights with signature DRL

Passive suspension

Pivi Pro

Meridian™ Sound System

Android Auto™

12-way heated, electric memory front seats with 2-way manual headrests

Apple CarPlay®

Active Sound Design

Software over the air

Cruise Control and Speed Limiter

Traffic Sign Recognition and Adaptive Speed Limiter

some photos I had time to look around and explore the quality interior. The rear seats are roomy and comfortable and the boot plenty big enough for a family going on holiday. Even my dog would fit in the back (and I think Charlie would like to be chauffeured around in it!). The Meridian sound system is crisp and clear with a DAB system that has the usual smart phone connectivity and will pick up all the usual channels. I was going to make a joke about how being a Jaguar, it only needs Radio 2 and Radio 4 as that is all the owners will listen to, but in fact this is a vehicle that will appeal to all ages.

This is indeed a rare beast – a good-looking car that is practical, safe and comfortable for a family, yet performs like a sports car if required. Owning one is easy too as the model I drove is available at

0% APR when purchased new, and there is a very attractive Business Contract Hire package too (see rogeryoung.co.uk for more details). As it is ‘clean and green’ there is no VED to pay and very favourable BIK rates, so you may be surprised how affordable this is. But whether you want one because it is practical and good for the planet or because you want a luxurious performance car, you will not be disappointed. When I am ready to change my car, this will be at the top of my list. Sadly, my test drive is over way too soon and I have to return this marvel of modern engineering to the lovely people at Roger Young. Thanks to them for lending me this beauty which brought a smile to my face and made driving fun again – I think my old dad would have approved.

Animated Directional Indicators

Automatic Headlight Levelling System with auto high beam assist

Automatic Headlight Levelling System

Lane Keep Assist

Driver Condition Monitor

Heated windscreen with Heated washer jets

Emergency Braking

ADAPTIVE FRONT LIGHTING SYSTEM (AFS)

3D Surround Camera

Heated steering wheel

Front and Rear Parking Aid

Two-zone Climate Control

Blind Spot Assist Pack

Electric Power Assisted Steering (EPAS)

Secure Tracker

Jaguar Drive Control

Public & home charging cable with timed charging

All Surface Progress Control (ASPC)

Keyless Entry

Dynamic Stability Control (DSC)

Powered tailgate

Lockable glovebox

Electric cabin preconditioning”

Low traction launch

Hill Launch Assist

PERFORMANCE: • Maximum speed mph (km/h)124 (200) • Acceleration (secs) 0-60mph (0-100 km/h)4.5 (4.8)

EV CONSUMPTION: • Combined WLTP Range miles (km)253 - 292 (407 - 470)†† • Combined WLTP Consumption kWh/100miles (kWh/100km) 22.0 - 25.2 (35.4 - 40.5)†† • Charging Time (AC 7kW 0-100%) - hours12.75 • CO₂ (g/km)0

POWERTRAIN: • Maximum power (PS/kW)400/294 • Maximum torque (Nm/lb.ft)696/512 • TransmissionSingle Speed Automatic

WLTP FUEL ECONOMY: • Energy Consumption Weighted (Wh/Km)236.2 • WLTP All Electric Range (EAER) (mi)272

Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

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CHAMBER PEOPLE

CHAMBER PEOPLE Name: Jasmine Peglar Role: Events Executive What do you do and why do you enjoy it? I work to ensure that the Chamber hosts high-quality events that are representative of our core values and meet the needs of our members. I create and implement unique events covering the most important topics, projects and achievements throughout Devon. I also play a key role in helping our members form relationships with like-minded professionals and businesses through networking events. I enjoy seeing other people happy, so when I know that an event has been a great success and people have left gaining new insights or connections, it is incredibly

rewarding. The Chamber community is one of kindness and integrity throughout a vast range of passionate organisations.

What inspires you? Creativity. Coming up with new ideas to improve something or create something new and seeing it through until the end.

What drives you?

If you could sum up your CV in one word, it would be..? Accomplished.

When it comes to business, do you follow head or heart? A bit of both. I follow with my heart when it comes to creating new ideas for events. Once I have visualised an event that I believe will be a success, I follow my heart in making that happen. However, I follow my head when it comes to making important business decisions, making sure to weigh up the pros and cons.

“Find a job you love and manage your time”

Results. I like being able to develop strong strategies to meet certain goals and objectives and find it extremely rewarding to see my hard work paying off.

Where do you see the future of your organisation? The Chamber will continue to evolve and grow at a significant rate. I think that we are at a real pivotal moment in time coming out of the pandemic and are fully prepared and invested in supporting businesses, facilitating introductions, improving skills and training and holding unique and interesting events to meet the needs of our members. The Chamber will continue to lobby for the needs of the county and shine a light on the strength of businesses in the South West.

What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given? Make the day, don’t let the day make you.

Describe yourself in five words Positive, Pragmatic, Reliable, Determined, Creative.

How do you balance life and work? Find a job you love and manage your time. If your job is draining you, and you are finding it difficult to do the things you love outside of work, something is wrong. Make sure to prioritise your daily tasks, have set working hours and try to stick to them the best you can.

What’s your favourite quote? Success is not final, failure is not fatal, it is the courage to continue that counts.

Who has been the greatest influence on you? My grandfather. I have always admired his intelligence and determination. He was the first person I would call when receiving any results at University and has been a constant source of love and support throughout my life.

What are you most proud of? Graduating with a BA (Hons) in History and Politics at Newcastle University, whilst maintaining a successful career throughout.

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Summer 2021 Chamber Profile


Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

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Summer 2021 Chamber Profile

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Profile for Cornerstone Vision

Chamber Profile Summer 2021  

The official publication of Devon & Plymouth Chamber of Commerce

Chamber Profile Summer 2021  

The official publication of Devon & Plymouth Chamber of Commerce

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