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ISSUE 12 • WINTER 2011

Scottish Skiing in Glenshee

Business Stars Crowned Businesses Urged to Prepare for Winter The Big Interview: Olympian Eve Muirhead Cyber Crime: It’s Big Business


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Contents Editors Introduction.................. 4 History of Chambers of Commerce................................ 4 Chamber Sponsor Partners....... 6 Chamber Members’ News... 8-11 The Big Interview.............. 12-13 Working in a Winter Wonderland........... 16-17 Ready for Winter?.................. 17 E-Crime is Big Business..... 18-19 Get Ahead!............................ 20 Star Awards 2011.............. 21-25 Business Support.................... 28 New Member Profiles........ 29-31 Food & Drink -



ince taking up the office of President of the Perthshire Chamber of Commerce in March of 2010, the passion and dedication of the Perthshire business people has continued to impress me. Their efforts have resulted in steady stream of innovations, initiatives and ideas in a constant bid to stay ahead of the competition and survive and grow. We were able to recognise and celebrate such achievements at our recent Annual Dinner and Business Star Awards. With bumper numbers and live music, spirits were high and the party went on into the wee small hours. We continue to lobby hard on your behalf on many issues. At the present time the most significant are for better broadband and telecommunications for the whole of Perthshire, business rates and for improved transport infrastructure, to name but a few. It is vital that members raise with us any issues that make business life even harder for them so that we can adequately and effectively represent them.  There is strength in numbers. 

Stephen Leckie Chamber President

Wild Game........................ 32-33 Scottish Skiing at Glenshee.... 34 Member to Member Discounts............................... 36 Membership Benefits.............. 37 Events 2012............................ 38

Front Cover: Snow Business Like Snow Business at Glenshee. For advertising contact D-Tech on T: 01389 736000 E: For editorial enquiries contact the Editor, Vicki Unite on T: 01738 450401 E: Publisher: D-Tech Distribution: D-Tech Distribution InCommerce is published by D-Tech Graphic Design & Print Ltd. Unit 14, Birch Road, Broadmeadow Industrial Estate G82 2RE. Telephone 01389 736000. Fax 01389 736002. E-mail: Edited by Perthshire Chamber of Commerce, Algo Business Centre, Glenearn Road, Perth PH2 0NJ Tel: 01738 450401 Fax: 01738 450402 E-mail: InCommerce is fully protected by copyright and nothing may be printed wholly or in part without the written permission of the publishers. The proprietors of this magazine are publishers and not agents, or sub-agents of those who advertise therein. They cannot be held liable for any loss suffered as a result of information gained from this publication.

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We are in a better position to influence and negotiate than individuals are and we use this for the benefit of our members. We are your Chamber of Commerce. Please continue to make use of the services and support we offer and make the most of your membership. You are supported by our Chief Executive, Vicki Unite, and Office Support and Events Coordinator, Karen Wright, based in the Chamber office to ensure that we continue to deliver and develop. I work closely with both Vicki and Karen, as do our board of Directors who come from a variety of business sectors and geographical locations around Perthshire, to help provide a worthwhile and valuable service for our members and the benefit of the local economy. Lastly, I wish you all a happy, prosperous and successful 2012.



The views expressed by authors of articles published in this magazine are solely those of the author and are not necessarily the views of or shared by the editor, nor the publisher or the directors, shareholders and/or employees of InCommerce Ltd or D-Tech Graphic Design & Print Ltd.


Editor’s Introduction

HISTORY OF CHAMBERS OF COMMERCE 16th Century Organisation With 21st Century Dynamics

Vicki Unite


t was so motivating and encouraging to be in the company of such deserving finalists, winners and valued supporters at our recent Annual Dinner and Business Star Awards. The evening was full of celebrations and congratulations and you can read more about the night and those companies involved on our fabulous spread on pages 21 to 25. Those who were shortlisted or took away a prize on the night have a valuable tool to use in this current climate and that is something that makes them stand out amongst their competitors. Our new package of business services provides even more tools for Perthshire businesses, offering hundreds of pounds worth of benefits including Chamber HR services and Chamber Legal Expenses Insurance and savings all as part of your Chamber membership. We will also be able to offer Export Documentation services and look forward to continuing to grow our services for the benefit of the membership. This magazine is also a terrific method of reaching your fellow members plus lots of non-members as this magazine has a distribution of 2500 with an electronic distribution of a further 3000. Members’ news and advice columns, which both provide promotion for companies, are free of charge so please do let us know your news and developments and you too can motivate and encourage other readers and highlight what a terrific place Perthshire is to live and work.

Chief Executive



erthshire Chamber of Commerce is part of a worldwide movement that is centuries-old. On 5 August 1599 in the Mediterranean port city of Marseilles, a Bureau de Commerce was founded to promote the interests of the local maritime industry. Officially recognised by the French king Henry IV in April 1600, Marseilles holds the honour of the establishment of the first ever Chamber of Commerce. The Chambers of Commerce movement expanded across France and into Belgium over the subsequent century, but it was not until 1783 when the world’s first Anglophone Chamber of Commerce was established in Glasgow. Edinburgh followed suit in 1785 and the 19th century saw the growth of the Chamber of Commerce movement throughout the rest of Scotland and Britain. Scotland, then, is the very cradle of the Chambers of Commerce movement in the English speaking world. Two models of Chamber organisation exist within the movement worldwide. One is known as the ‘public law’ or ‘continental’ model. This is prevalent in the countries of mainland Europe their former colonies. Under this model, Chambers are regulated and often funded by the public sector, and membership is mandatory for all businesses. Our own model originated here in Scotland, and has been replicated in the USA, across the Commonwealth and in Scandinavia. In these parts of the world, the Chamber model familiar to you has put down roots in massively diverse communities. The common thread is of businesses coming together to form a common voice, to speak to government and other stakeholders to promote business interests and to work for their communities. Crucial to the model is that membership is entirely voluntary. Chambers of Commerce are entirely independent and their activities are driven by their members. Chambers of Commerce perform several functions for their members. They are networking forums – business clubs – facilitating the making of contacts and sharing knowledge and experience. They provide services for members such as export documentation, training, mentor matching, events, learning opportunities and business support. Members may use the chamber as a forum to offer discounted professional services to fellow members. The Chamber also provides a forum to contributing a collective business view to influencing decision making that will affect that local business community. Chambers in Scotland and in the rest of the UK have come together to form networks where they recognise that certain Chamber functions may be more effective if undertaken on a collective basis. Scottish Chambers of Commerce


01738 630666 |

(SCC) is our network and exists to add value to the work of Chambers across Scotland. SCC manages the business mentoring scheme, provides access to discounted private healthcare schemes for members to offer as an employee benefit, supports Chambers with policy development and media expertise, and undertakes the representation duties of Chambers and a national level in Scotland. This role sees SCC working on individual Chambers’ behalf to represent the interests of Chamber members to decision makers at Scottish, UK and European level on the wide range of issues that affect the operating environment for those member businesses. Twenty-two Chambers of Commerce across Scotland are affiliated to the Scottish Chambers of Commerce, ranging from the largest Chambers, in Scotland’s cities, to small, developing Chambers, community based and volunteer led. Each Chamber has a different balance of members’ interests to serve, and different capacity and resource to do that. All, though, have to fulfil a basic set of criteria based on management and membership structures to attain affiliation to SCC. Some of the larger Chambers of Commerce in Scotland are also affiliated to the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) – a network which operates, as the name suggests, across Britain. While in many cases, there is a distinct point of view to be promulgated on behalf of business in Scotland, there are other areas where the issues facing a business in Pitlochry are the same, and have the same solution, as the issues facing a business in Bournemouth. However, several Chambers of Commerce in Scotland do not fulfil the stricter criteria for affiliation demanded by BCC because they operate in smaller business communities; our Scottish geography makes it important that businesses in these communities have their own local voice. Scottish Chambers of Commerce will therefore work closely with our BCC colleagues in London where appropriate, to ensure that the views and needs of Chamber members north of the Border are taken into account in BCC’s work. As a member of a Chamber of Commerce, your business is part of a worldwide movement that for centuries , has promoted the interests of local groups of businesses to strengthen communities and drive economic growth. Across the world, different cultures and economic conditions mean that Chambers must operate in different ways – indeed, the same could be said of the differences that exist within the Chamber network just in Scotland. Despite these differences, chambers of Commerce share a core purpose, and though the methods of delivery may differ and may change over time, this purpose remains.

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At Bank of Scotland we put great emphasis on a long-term, relationship-led approach to banking and pride ourselves on their integration in the local business community. Our involvement with the Perthshire Chamber of Commerce ensures we maintain a regular dialogue with company directors, managers and entrepreneurs across the area. Working closely with the Chamber strengthens our knowledge of the issues affecting local firms and enables their teams to provide valuable guidance and insight to businesses in Perthshire.

Perth College UHI provides further and higher education through its main campus in Perth, a network of local Learning Centres and distance learning options which reach out across Scotland and the world.

The RBS Group is a large international banking and financial services company. Headquartered in Edinburgh, The Group operates in the United Kingdom, Europe, the Middle East, the Americas and Asia, serving over 30 million customers. The Group provides a wide range of products and services to personal, commercial and large corporate and institutional customers through its two principal subsidiaries, The Royal Bank of Scotland and NatWest, as well as through a number of other wellknow brands including Citizens, Charter One, Ulster Bank, Coutts, Direct Line and Churchill. Vic Bicocchi, local Director, says: “RBS is very proud to be a Platinum Partner of the Perthshire Chamber. Small and medium sized businesses are the driving force behind the Scottish economy, accounting for the vast majority of companies in Scotland and almost half of total employment and RBS is committed to continuing to support and reassure SME businesses and to working closely with its customers during these challenging times.”

The College is part of University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI), Scotland’s newest university comprising Perth College UHI and twelve other partner colleges and research institutions. They offer a wide range of courses including NQs, HNCs, HNDs and degrees, as well as work-based learning and vocational training. They work to assist businesses by offering advice, seminars, workshops, bespoke training, events, consultancy and developing entrepreneurial activity within our student body and the wider community.

Ten years ago the MacGregor family stuck a toe into the waters of skip hire as a sideline to their farming enterprise. With one old lorry and 20 skips, Binn Skips was up and running. It became apparent that there was a gap in the market for a skip hire company in Tayside that provided a good level of customer service. Word spread and before too long a second lorry was on the road and they were in business.


Gold Partners

For Scottish meetings, weddings, short breaks, weekend breaks, self-catering and family holidays, you’ll find Crieff Hydro offers the broadest choice around. Set in 900 acres of Perthshire countryside they have over 60 onsite activities, as well as five places to eat and drink. For adults after some ‘me time’, there’s no better place than the Victorian Spa. And with a creche, free childcare for 2-12s, and teenager hangouts like the Hub, the kids will have fun too.

Formed in 1979, Highland Spring Group is the largest supplier of naturally sourced bottled water in the UK, offering the most comprehensive range of brands and products including still and sparkling flavoured and unflavoured water in glass and PET packaging. The company supplies five brands including the UK’s leading produced brand as well as numerous own label customer products. The Group owns five bottling plants across the UK with its headquarters in Blackford, Perthshire.

Squirrel Self Store is Perth’s premier selfstorage facility with over 250 units on ground floor level – costing from less than 62p per day. The store is clean, dry and secure and you’re always assured of a warm welcome. They’ve got free parking, customer toilets, refreshments and Sky TV to make your visit as enjoyable as possible, while the Squirrel Shop sells a variety of essential packing materials and boxes, tape and temporary wardrobes – and ice cream!

Producing in excess of 350m litres of water per year the company has stated ambitions to become a 500m litre and £100m turnover business by 2013.

Silver Partner

Call for a quote on 01738 624325 or pop in for a free guided tour and a coffee – or check out the website at www.StoreMyNuts. com. Their man and a van are always available with prices from just £20.00.

Since then the company has gone from strength to strength with 25 trucks on the road providing all types of waste collections and a waste recycling system at Binn Farm which is recycling over 85% of all waste handled. This figure is only set to increase as they work very hard towards zero waste to landfill targets.


We wish to acknowledge the ongoing and valuable support given by our local member Partners. If you are interested in Partnering with us please contact the Chamber office on 01738 450401 or email

■ Business Advice from Business Lawyers ■ Commercial Property Advice from Commercial Property Lawyers ■ Employment Advice from Employment Lawyers Contact us at: Perth 10 Blackfriars Street PH1 5NS Tel: 01738 637311

Crieff 14 Comrie Street, PH7 4AZ Tel: 01764 655151

Dundee 13 Ward Road, DD1 1LU Tel: 01382 20000

HEADER BAR chamber Members’ News


Onegin Ball


erth Festival of the Arts has now been on Perth’s cultural map for over 40 years. It is a registered charity, founded by three members of Perth’s Junior Chamber and over the years it has grown from its classical and opera roots to embrace all art forms. There are many opportunities for local businesses to get involved through attractive sponsorship packages, which feature client entertaining and guaranteed early booking of tickets. Packages start at £150. A rich variety of artists is on offer in 2012 ranging from Nigel Kennedy and The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra to Radio 4 favourite and Goodie Tim Brooke-Taylor and Jools Holland and his Rhythm and Blues Orchestra.

English Touring Opera will bring “The Barber of Seville” and “Eugene Onegin”. Other classical highlights include The Berlin Symphony Orchestra, early music choral group Stile Antico and a Celebration of the Life of Kathleen Ferrier. Jazz is prominent too with Scottish jazz legend Carol Kidd, acknowledged in jazz circles as ‘Britain’s finest ballads singer’ Jazz Review. Martin Taylor and Martin Simpson will perform together in an intimate gig at Perth Theatre. Skipinnish will be taking to the stage for the Festival Ceilidh. Other events include Edinburgh Fringe Favourite “John Peel’s Shed” by John Osborne. There are many free events including daily lunchtime concerts by Perthshire Schools, Art on the River and lots of local exhibitions. More shows to be announced and additional information at Jools Holland

Flying the floral Flag for Scotland


wo florists from Something Special Flowers will travel to next year’s Chelsea Flower Show to compete in the “Chelsea Flower Show Florist of the Year 2012”.


Jillian Page and her niece Paula McLagan entered the qualifying heats which were held in Glasgow. The judges awarded Jillian first prize in the senior section and Paula scooped first prize in the junior section.

is a great honour for both florists and Something Special Flowers.

The Chelsea Flower Show is recognised as one of the biggest events of the year and will be a fantastic experience for both florists, as this is the first time either of them have entered for Chelsea.

Before the show all finalists will be given a theme to work with and will be given 3 hours on the day to design and construct a floral piece which will indeed, have to be “Something Special” in order to pick up a Chelsea Gold medal.

The heats will continue throughout Britain over the next few months and will culminate in the finals which will be held in May at the annual show in London.

So now the planning begins for an exciting road trip to London. Not only for Jillian and Paula, but gauging the public reaction to the girls’ success in their home town of Blairgowrie, there could be an exodus from the local area by way of support!

As the winners of the Scottish heats, Jillian and Paula will be the only florists from a Scottish business to compete, which


Jillian Page and Paula McLagan

chamber Members’ HEADERNews BAR

New MD for Vector Aerospace Vector Aerospace, whose Components Services business is based at Almondbank, has a new Managing Director. He is Michael Tyrrell, who joined Vector in April of last year and held the post of Operations Director (Helicopters and Components) before being appointed MD of all the company’s UK operations. Michael’s extensive experience spans both the defence and civil aerospace sectors, with the latter including serving as General Manager of the Aircraft Overhaul Division of Aer Lingus. Married with two sons, he is a keen golfer and a rugby enthusiast. Michael Tyrrell

Michael has taken on his new role at a time of significant development within Vector Aerospace. In July of this year the company was acquired by Eurocopter, a subsidiary of the European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company N.V. (EADS). EADS is a global pan-European aerospace and defence corporation and a leading defence and military contractor worldwide - so Vector now has a very powerful parent. The long established Almondbank facility provides a one-

stop-shop capability for repair, overhaul, modification and testing of an extensive range of transmission, mechanical and hydraulic components, as well as structural assemblies. The business supports a variety of rotary and fixed-wing platforms, including the UK MoD fleets of Chinook, Lynx and Sea King helicopters. Almondbank is renowned for the quality of its workmanship, winning awards such as the Boeing Supplier of the Year.

Black & Lizars join Hine Opticians to create a new force in Perth


lack & Lizars, Scotland’s largest independent chain of Opticians, has signalled its expansion plans with the acquisition of Perth based Hine Opticians. Mr and Mrs Hine, current members of the Perthshire Chambers of Commerce, and former Perthshire Business of the Year Star Award winners, will now join Black & Lizars with a view to launching a new flag-ship practice in Perth early in 2012. Mark Ross, Chief Executive of Black & Lizars, said: “I am delighted that Nick and Kay Hine have agreed to join Black & Lizars. Their unrivalled reputation for patient care and service fits perfectly with our philosophy of putting clinical care at the heart of everything we do. “Our new flag-ship practice will deliver the latest advances in eye-care technology, including a 3D OCT Scanner which is rarely available out with a hospital setting, not to mention the latest in frame fashion trends.” The new practice, costing over half a million pounds to refurbish and equip, will be opened on George Street, only a short distance from the current practice of Hine Opticians. Mr Ross explained that Black & Lizars, which currently has 23 practices across Scotland and Northern Ireland, will be seeking to expand further in Perthshire and indeed across Scotland through a combination of new practice openings and acquisitions. The group, based in Glasgow, is also in the process of rolling-out a new Hearing Care business, which it plans to introduce to Perth once the new practice is firmly established.

News Flash:

Nick Hine has signed up to compete in the 2012 London Marathon raising money for Fight for Sight. If you wish to donate to this good cause please go to nickhineoptician

Raving Mad About... “The Best Of”... Photography!


he Best of Perth & Kinross have partnered with Raving Mad About...Photography to bring members the very best in Commercial Photography. Here at The Best of Perth & Kinross we harness the power of word of mouth both on and offline to showcase local recommended businesses. We all recognise that ‘people deal with people’ and commercial photography is one of the 17 essential marketing tools we use to help showcase the best recommended businesses. Holly Lynch, Co-founder of Raving Mad About...Photography explained: ‘”I’ve always thought of photography as a way of informing and inspiring others, after all a picture’s worth a thousand words and I am looking forward to helping to promote the best businesses in Perth & Kinross.” Zoe Tate, Owner of The Best of Perth & Kinross added: “I am really excited to be working with Holly from Raving Mad About... Photography, she has a relaxed professionalism about her that allows her creativity and intelligence to shine through. I have watched as

Holly Lynch and Zoe Tate

she has put camera shy people at ease so that she can take the best picture possible. “I am also pleased to say that Holly has agreed to join the team not only as The Best of Photographer but as the local champion for Crieff. This is a really exciting time; I know Holly will be a great asset in helping to shout about The Best recommended businesses in Crieff and surrounding areas.” For more information about The Best of Perth & Kinross and Raving Mad About...Photography visit perthandkinross



chamber Members’ News

PerthshireOnline.TV Launches

PerthshireOnline is delighted to announce the launch of their new Perthshire Internet TV channel. Featuring local businesses, news and community stories, PerthshireOnline.TV launched at the end of October and broadcasts a weekly magazine programme. Gavin Sime of PerthshireOnline commented: “We’ll be showing a new episode each Monday but you’ll also be able to go back and watch previous episodes again whenever you like. Unlike normal television, you have complete control over when you choose to watch.” John Kellas, Councillor for Economic Development and Infrastructure at Perth & Kinross Council is extremely supportive of the venture. “This is another exciting opportunity for businesses in Perth and Kinross to showcase their products and services locally and further afield,” he said. “It’s also a great way to strengthen our communities by sharing news and information.” The show will feature interviews, demonstrations, advice, ‘what’s on’ and current news in a magazine-style format lasting approximately 40 minutes. “As well as featuring local businesses on camera, we’re also able to offer a TV shopping channel, meaning that Perthshire businesses can demonstrate their products and offer them for sale to a global market. We’ve already had interest from customers in the US, Australia and South Africa. This represents a significant opportunity to put Perthshire on the global map,” says Lindsay Fielding of PerthshireOnline. You can tune in to see the current and previous episodes by going to Local businesses that would like to be featured on the show or find out more information can email

Business Editor's Invitiation The business community in Tayside and Fife is the lifeblood of the region and it has some great tales to tell. The economic downturn may have made life extremely tough but a combination of ingenuity and tenacity has seen many companies emerge stronger for the experience. There is still a long road ahead - concerns over access to business finance, the Eurozone debt crisis, fiscal policy, the possibility of a double-dip recession and the UK government’s major spending cuts all remain - but there are seeds of renewed growth emerging. Perthshire is home to internationally significant Graham Huband companies such as transport giant Stagecoach and energy provider SSE but it is the vibrant SME sector which is the powerhouse with the tourism, food and drink, retail, construction and service sectors featuring prominently. Through its new dedicated daily business section, The Courier will become the voice of industry in the region by featuring expert analysis and opinion alongside the best local industry news six days a week. “As The Courier’s first ever Business Editor it is my role to reflect the successes and failures of companies based in Tayside and Fife and highlight the real problems that are proving a barrier to trade,” said Graham. “I am keen to start a conversation with the business community in Perthshire to see what makes the region tick and discover the real issues which are putting obstacles in the way of sustained growth amongst local firms. “This is your opportunity to have your say over the future economic fortunes of the region in a forum that has the attention of Scotland’s key decision makers.” Graham can be contacted on: Tel: 01382 575318 or 07585969942 or by email:



Success for PC Solutions

Keith and Donald from PC Solutions

PC Solutions has recently launched new web site which allows clients to shop for new or refurbished laptops from the comfort of their own home with the innovative option of collecting in store the next day, or having it delivered direct to their door This new development follows a move to the city centre which has proved to be great for business says Managing Director Keith Fergie: “Since moving to the centre of Perth just over two years ago sales of laptops and computers have really taken off. Citing October as a comparison, we finished the month a staggering 68% ahead of last year, which in a recession is a tremendous achievement. Their computer and laptop repair facility is experiencing similar growth which Keith attributes to the “skill and dedication” of the PC Solution’s staff: “Our staff always go the extra mile to try and ensure our clients enjoy a pain free computing experience.” Another achievement for PC Solutions is that they have just been voted as one of the best businesses in Perthshire by their customers due to their very high level of customer service and attention to detail and this sees them being awarded by fellow Chamber member The Best Of Perth and Kinross. Keith said “We are delighted to have achieved this recognition. A key part of our business philosophy is excellent customer service and we do our best to ensure customer satisfaction. “It’s thanks to our loyal customers for nominating us for this award and for their feedback that has allowed PC Solutions to evolve our customer care to such high standards.”

chamber Members’ News

Local Businesses Join Forces to Promote Perthshire as ‘Scotland’s Business Centre’ A consortium of Perthshire businesses has recently been awarded funding from VisitScotland and Perth and Kinross Council to market the region as a world-class tourism destination for conferences and exhibitions. The collaborative marketing initiative, which comprises of a range of local accommodation, venue and activity providers, aims to turn the region into ‘Scotland’s Business Centre’ and promote the unspoilt region of Perthshire as an attractive alternative to Central Belt venues.

Bell Ingram takes the lead with SRDP funding for grey squirrel control


he announcement of the September RPAC results from the Scottish Rural Development Programme last month has meant more success for Bell Ingram in the battle against grey squirrels in Scotland. To date Bell Ingram has secured over £400,000 of funding to implement formal trapping regimes to control grey squirrels on a significant number of estates across Angus and Perthshire. The range of skills and experience Bell Ingram provide has ensured a 100% success rate with applications. The idea behind the funding is to help conserve our native red squirrel which has now become an iconic Scottish species and increasingly endangered. There are an estimated 120,000 red squirrels in Scotland which represent approximately 75% of the UK population. Red squirrels have been recognised as a priority species so are subject to a UK Biodiversity Action Plan. Undoubtedly, grey squirrels are by far the biggest threat to our red squirrel population and is estimated that grey squirrels outnumber reds by 2:1 in Scotland.

Businesses contributing to the initiative include Perth Racecourse, Gleneagles Hotel, Crieff Hydro, Scone Palace, Dunkeld Hilton House Hotel, Blair Castle and Atholl Estates, BlueSky Experiences, Perth Concert Hall, Atholl Palace and Murrayshall House Hotel. Thanks to grant funding from VisitScotland’s Growth Fund and Perth & Kinross Council, the marketing initiative - known as the Perthshire Business Tourism Group - has recently launched a new website (www.scotlandsbusinesscentre. which highlights the vast range of attractions and activities available to business visitors. In addition, the group will use funding to undertake creative marketing activities including search engine optimisation and online marketing; FAM Trips and PR; together with attendance at four key Convention Scotland Events. The events, which take place in cities across the UK, will bring the Perthshire Business Tourism Group together with UK trade and qualified hosted buyers from the Meetings, Incentive, Conference and Events world. Commenting on the initiative, Sam Morshead, Chairman of the Perthshire Business Tourism Group and General Manager of Perth Racecourse said: “It is great to see major businesses come together to produce a single, unified approach to marketing the region.”

Saving Scotland’s Red Squirrels (SSRS) are trying to build a line of defence across Scotland to prevent the northward migration of greys. All of the estates that Bell Ingram have secured funding for are based on this line and doing vital work in ensuring the success of the objectives of SSRS. With another RPAC announced for next year, the work has already begun on the new applications with hopes for the same success.





lympian and four times World Junior Curling Champion, Perthshire’s

Eve Muirhead is already a curling phenomenon at the age of only 21.

Affectionately dubbed “The Ice Queen”, the Blair Atholl third generation champion rules the rink. But journalist Maureen Young discovers there’s nothing frosty about this personable young sportswoman. The Muirheads are one of Perthshire’s curling dynasties. Was there ever any pressure on you to follow the family tradition? None at all – my two brothers and I both chose to take up curling. It was our decision. My Grandfather Bill was a world champion and Dad Gordon racked up the medals too but we were never pushed into it. That wouldn’t have worked on me. I first became interested when Mum took me to watch Dad play. So when did you first take to the ice? I must have been about seven or eight years old and it was at Pitlochry. I knew immediately I wanted to go back again and again – it really was addictive. There was an after-school junior curling school at Pitlochry and it produced a lot of good players. That was where I cut my teeth in the sport. You were still very young when the titles and trophies began? I was selected for a Perth and Kinross Academy which put together a junior team (under 21s) and from there I competed in my first Scottish Junior Championships when I was 14. I only won one game but the year after I got as far as the semi-finals, before



lifting the title the following year aged 16. That same year I won my first World Junior Championship so I guess I have been collecting international silverware from the age of 16. Are you unique in the way you have dominated the sport in the UK at such a young age? Yes, it seemingly is the first time someone has come through so strong, so young, and continued to dominate. But I always wanted this so badly. I practised and worked so hard to make it happen – to the exclusion of all the things a “normal” teenage girl does. I maybe missed out on some things but I’ve also gained so much. I’ve made many good friends both at home and abroad through curling – which has to be one of the most sociable sports going – at club as well as international level. Are the winning ways here to stay? Fingers crossed. There’s no better feeling than winning. I’ve taken silver in the last couple of majors and let me tell you – silver is not nice. You’ve got to play to win when you’re at this level.

HEADER BAR Where does the biggest threat come from? Canada is always the team to beat and Scotland against Canada is always the must-see big match. But there’s serious competition from Sweden and Switzerland and China and Russia are snapping at everyone’s heels. Do you get to travel a lot? Every year I am in Canada, Switzerland and Norway and I’ve also been to the US, Sweden and Korea playing in major championships. But we don’t really get to see the country. All we see is the airport, the hotel and the ice rink. Is the sport well funded? Scotland is getting better but we are still well short of giving the sport the support and funding it needs. You need to win medals to attract major sponsorship and you need to have the training facilities and financial backing to get you to that stage. I’ll never get rich curling. We’re really grateful to a raft of sponsors who support our team. That keeps us in the game. What about modelling as an alternative income? We see you’re the cover girl for the 2012 Canadian Women Of Curling Calendar. I did that to support charity and I was really honoured to be asked – normally it’s all Canadian curlers that are featured. I loved doing it and some of the shots they took are great but that doesn’t make me a model. Perhaps it’s something I could do in the future – if I’m asked. Never say never. One of the calendar shots features you with the bagpipes. Do you play? Yes I’ve played for many years. I don’t play competitively now as I simply don’t have the time. I used to be a member of the Vale of Atholl and then the Pitlochry and Blair Atholl pipe bands. I sometimes get asked to play at tournaments abroad and I’m happy to borrow someone’s pipes and play a few tunes. I enjoy it. What other skills do you have? Not that many! I do play pretty good golf – playing off two. It used to be golf in the summer and curling in the winter but now I’m training and building up my fitness for curling throughout the summer. I’m a member at Pitlochry and Blair Atholl Golf Clubs and often play in charity celebrity pro-am tournaments which are great fun as you get to meet and mix with all sorts of sports personalities. Who is your favourite sports personality? Has to be Sir Chris Hoy. A lot of people give up once they achieve Olympic Gold but he still has a hunger to win and carries on trying to be the best he can. I would like to think I would be like that. You had a shot at that Olympic medal in 2010. Will you be back to try again in Russia in 2014? That’s my goal – I want an Olympic Gold - but it’s a difficult selection process. I’ll give it my best but at the end of the day one bad game could end those dreams and send someone else through to represent Great Britain. We came sixth in 2010 and I accept we didn’t play as well as we could. We were never all on top form at the same time and it slipped away.

How do you feel representing your country? There’s no better feeling than playing with Scotland on your back – and winning medals for your country. Of course there’s a great sense of national pride and it’s really emotional to carry and fulfil a nation’s hopes. The buzz as part of team GB at the Vancouver Olympics in 2010 was amazing. Age 20, stepping out at the opening ceremony in front of a 25,000 crowd. It was unbelievable – what a rush! Do you think you intimidate other players when you play at club level? I hope not. I love playing club games and I still lose some – I’m not invincible! Do you enjoy living at Blair Atholl? I love it. But I’ve just moved into a flat in Stirling to be close to my training base. I’m learning to cook and really enjoying it – even bought a few recipe books. But there’s nowhere like home. I’m a county girl and I love Perthshire. Ever fallen on the ice? A few times – but nothing that resulted in broken bones. The worst was during the qualifying rounds at Aberdeen for the Scottish Championships when I was 16. My feet just went from under me and I crashed backwards landing on my head. I saw stars and was taken off for a spell but I was desperate to get back on. It’s a dangerous sport – you have to be very careful. Sports training is now a science isn’t it? Very much so. My Dad – who’s now my coach - says his warmup before a game was a coffee and a cigarette. It’s changed days. Curling is a very physical sport and to be the best you have to be extremely fit. A game can last three hours and you can have three games a day. You need fitness and stamina – both physical and mental. We have to learn nutrition and psychology as well as work on core strength and cardiovascular training. Is the gain worth the pain? Absolutely. There is nothing I would rather do. It’s hard work but you have to accept that if you want to get the rewards and success from it. I don’t know how long curling will be an option for me but there are still top international players out there well into their 40s so I’ll keep going until I’m no longer a contender.



Business Growth


erth and Kinross Council’s Business Growth Team provides one to one business advice and support to local businesses which have the potential and commitment to grow and have a positive impact on the local economy. Our team will give you the opportunity to discuss your plans confidentially and at no cost. They will challenge your ideas if required and be entirely objective with advice given. Our advisors have an excellent understanding of both local and national funding packages and will aim to ensure that no suitable opportunity is missed. All successful services rely on having an effective network. We work closely with and have personal links to all other local business support organisations therefore ensuring that you will receive the assistance you need. With the sustainability of businesses being a key priority for the Business Growth Team offer crucial on-going support to clients.

Case Study

Heather Hills Honey Farm, Mark Noonan MD


he inspiration for Heather Hills Honey farm came from the purchase of one beehive in 1945. Not an uncommon occurrence at the time, due to sugar rationing, but, the idea blossomed into one of the first ever commercial honey farms in the UK. Located here in Perthshire with its farm buildings in Bridge of Cally, Heather Hills has been producing quality Scottish blossom honey from the soft fruit farms of Perthshire and Angus and its award winning Scottish Heather honey from the Perthshire Highlands for almost 60 years. Like most farming the crop yields fluctuate and prices are commodity based and influenced by supply and demand. Unlike other farming, honey yields can vary by as much as 80%. It was with this in mind that the farm has spent recent years developing the brand and extending the product range. Two simple additions were made to the range; a selection of other unique honeys sourced from around the world; and hand made Scottish preserves, sourced from the farms where our bees have pollinated the fruit. With the new lines in place and orders coming in there was still one problem to be solved before the potential growth could be achieved. The farm buildings, built in 1962, were no longer fit for its future purpose. The first meeting with Andrew Webster my Perth & Kinross Council business advisor took place at the start of the year. A cautious but measured response was received, but it did seem that there were possibly funds available through the business growth scheme and they were keen to help. The project was simply to improve the buildings to facilitate future growth and expansion. This included; insulation, replacement of defunct heating sources, conversion to renewable energy, a new packing room, and a new office/ visitor area. The budget was discussed, funding limits advised and guidelines on how to complete the application forms given. With emphasis very much on growth rather than savings, benefits to the

local economy and future legacy, the parameters were well defined and guidance helpful. Encouraged with this ‘amber light’ contact was maintained with my business advisor and the following months were spent costing the project, arranging quotes and seeking the necessary planning permission. Eventually, all the information was available to complete the business plan which was one of the most comprehensive business plans I have ever completed. Although the task was quite daunting, assistance was readily available from my advisor. Further information was required to show how growth would be achieved but by its completion we had a business plan that will provide the template for growth for the next five years. The process was thorough and there were queries about the plan to be explained, but once satisfied, the process was quick and two weeks from submission we had the green light. Building started in October of this year and by the start of next year all the work should have been completed. There is no doubt that this project would not have gone ahead without the assistance of Growth Fund and the help from the Business Growth team. If you find yourself in a similar position and can see growth for your business that requires investment now, my advice would be to book yourself a meeting with a business advisor from the Business Growth Team at Perth & Kinross Council.

Case Study

Crop Solutions Limited, Ian Campbell MD


rop Solutions Ltd is a dynamic and energetic company with a vision for sustainable growth. Established in 2007 this small but determined local company has already demonstrated the drive and energy required to grow and establish a successful business even during a difficult recession. Crop Solutions Ltd import and market a wide range of crop covers including non- woven spun bonded fleece. This lightweight crop cover helps protect delicate crops from frost damage. It can also be used to warm early crops in the spring including early potatoes and early strawberry crops. Covering crops with fleece allows growers to extend their growing season and this can reduce food miles by enabling more food to be produced locally. Crop Solutions Managing Director Ian Campbell commented “If UK growers can extend their local harvesting season by using crop covers on their fruit and vegetables it can reduce the amount of food we need to import” Crop Solutions are also one of the UK’s leading suppliers of insect netting. Their high quality insect nets are supplied in a range of different sizes and grades depending on which crops they are used on. Nets are secured over the vegetable crops so that insects are unable to attack them. The nets act like a physical barrier keeping the insects out but allowing through the three essential ingredients for healthy plant production - sunlight, rain and air. This environmentally friendly technique has allowed farmers and growers all over the UK to reduce their dependence on insecticides and chemicals. It has also helped improve the quality of organically grown vegetables by reducing damage caused by pests. Crop Solutions Insect Nets are used on a wide variety of crops including swedes, broccoli, cauliflowers, salads and organics. Crop Solutions believe in re-using rather than recycling. Their nets are designed to last up to 10 years and can be re-used many times on different crops. Ian Campbell who established Crop Solutions Ltd has nearly 20 years of experience as a farmer and vegetable grower so is well aware of the many problems facing today’s leading UK growers. Consequently they have also developed a new Crop Cover Rolling Machine to make handling crop covers easier. This provides customers with a mechanical system to roll up and unroll their crop covers the following season. These machines are now being exported to countries all over Europe to roll up and unroll fleece, polythene, insect net and even poly tunnels. When the company was set up four years ago they had one member of staff but now employ five people with plans to recruit more next year. As the company has expanded it has to make significant changes to how it manages both its customer base and supply chain through improved IT systems.

“As with any growing business capital investment always plays a very important role” said Campbell “especially in this climate where many banks are unwilling to lend and this has been a major challenge for us.” He added “two of the best financial decisions that the company had made in the past 12 months were moving their business banking to the Clydesdale Bank and to speak to Perth & Kinross Council and Scottish Enterprise to see if any financial assistance was available. He continued “We have been really impressed by the support and business advice that is freely available to any small business that can provide a creditable track record along with realistic plans for future growth. Initially we spoke to the team at Small Business Gateway and they introduced us to both Scottish Enterprise and PKC. Before we made contact we were very sceptical about the level of support we might receive and how long it would take etc but our experience was the very opposite. The advisors we met at both SE and PKC gave us some excellent advice as to how we could go about achieving our goals set out in our business plan. They also suggested that there could be some financial assistance available if we applied for it. Again like many small businesses we thought that this would take up too much time but with their help and advice we had an application in place and approved within four weeks of our initial meeting.” Crop Solutions admit that although the application process did involve a considerable amount work they were very impressed by how quickly both SE and PKC dealt with it and got it approved. The outcome was they managed to obtain financial support to partially fund a new IT system which will allow them to better manage the company’s stock control, order processing and accounts systems. Crop Solutions were also made aware of other marketing assistance that may be available including website development, promotional literature, trade shows and support with export sales. Ian Campbell said “I would strongly recommend any small business trying to expand in the current economic climate to speak to the PKC Business Growth Team. If you have a well-documented business plan with potential for growth they may just be able to help you achieve your goals.”

If you would like to make an appointment to discuss your growth plans with one of the growth team please contact Alison Seggie, Enterprise Manager on 01738 477953 or


Working in a Winter Wonderland Debbie Fellows, Associate (Accredited as a Specialist in Employment Law by the Law Society of Scotland) Thorntons LLP, looks at how employers should prepare for adverse weather.

Pictures courtesy of Graeme Hart, Perthshire Picture Agency.




hange is a coming, as they say – in the weather at least – so are you ready for it?

Last winter, snow and bad weather forced many businesses to close as employees struggled to get to work, costing the British economy an estimated £1 billion per day! The reports are that we are in for another bitterly cold winter and with this in mind if you have not already done so it is time to look at whether you have put in place adequate policies and procedures to enable you to manage your employees and business if and when the severe weather hits. A clear, concise and up-to-date Adverse Weather Policy/ Business Interruption Plan will give you the opportunity to make contingency plans by setting out what is expected of employees during periods of bad weather or unexpected shutdown.

When drafting an Adverse Weather Policy you should: • Make it clear to employees when the policy will apply and what is considered to be adverse weather. Advise employees of the sources you will use to establish whether conditions are safe for travel, e.g. police, public transport, local authority. • Remind employees of the absence reporting procedures you have in place and who employees should report to if they are struggling to attend work. • Advise employees of the position on pay in respect of adverse weather related absences. Generally speaking, you are under no obligation to pay employees who do not make it to work due to adverse weather. However, in the interests of maintaining staff morale and external PR, it is advisable to consider suitable alternatives before deciding to withhold pay. You should consider the following alternative arrangements: (i) Working from another location e.g. a nearer office or from home. (ii) Flexible working e.g. allowing an employee to start later or leave early to make allowance for travel delays/ restrictions or childcare arrangements. (iii) Using holidays. You may agree with an employee that they will take time off as paid holiday. Alternatively, employees may be asked to make the time back. Set out how the right to take unpaid time off for family emergencies fits in with your adverse weather policy. Adverse weather tends to result in the closure of schools and this may present many employees with childcare problems. Employees have the right to reasonable unpaid time off to deal with emergency situations regarding their children. However, this time off is intended to allow for alternative arrangements to be made and not for employees to look after their children themselves. You should ensure the right balance is struck between the need to get work done and recognising the childcare difficulties which arise in these circumstances.

New Scottish Government campaign encourages us to get prepared NOW. Last year’s prolonged winter weather caught people out across Scotland. So whether it’s at home, on the road or in your community, getting ready for winter is something we all need to do. A new Scottish Government campaign - Ready for Winter? – is encouraging everyone to get ready now. By simply thinking about how our families, businesses and communities could be affected, we can all take a few simple steps to be better prepared. So, how prepared are you? Have you started making a household plan or packing a few essential items in your car? Even an average winter is likely to include cold snaps, snowfalls, ice, storms, high winds, heavy rain and fog. Taking action now will help make Scotland better prepared.   In addition to having emergency items ready, identifying family members or neighbours who may need extra help if severe weather strikes is also vital. Having their phone numbers to hand and offering to help with grocery shopping or other essential tasks can help minimise the effects of winter weather where you live. By simply thinking about how our families, businesses and communities could be affected, we can all take a few simple steps to be better prepared. Here are some practical tips to get you started: •

Getting ready for winter at home is easy. Just make a household plan and collect together the items that will be essential to you and your family in an emergency.

In severe weather conditions, your journey could take longer than expected. Check the weather forecast and road conditions before you set out, and make sure your phone is fully charged. Pack a few essential items in your car such as an ice scraper and de-icer, a torch and spare batteries, a shovel for snow, warm clothes, boots and a blanket; and some food and a warm drink in a flask.

Identify family or neighbours in your community who may need an extra helping hand if severe weather strikes - have their phone numbers to hand and offer to help with grocery shopping or other essential tasks.

• Explain how you will communicate with staff during any closure. For example, through your website. Ensure staff contact details are up-to-date. • Balance safety with unauthorised absence or those taking advantage of a bad weather situation. Consider linking your adverse weather policy with your disciplinary policy. • Ensure your adverse weather policy is adequately communicated to all employees ahead of any adverse weather conditions. If you do not already have a policy in place do it now before it is too late!

For more helpful tips and information on how to get ready for winter now and help Scotland be better prepared go to



Business protection



The Scottish Business Crime Centre looks at keeping Perth and Kinross safe from the cyber criminal. Protecting business interests at any time of year can be challenging, but this is never more so than during and after the festive period. Crime against business has changed a lot over the last few years as more and more on line activity has developed and the methods being used have become more sophisticated. The threat no longer comes solely from a jemmy-wielding night owl in a balaclava targeting the petty cash box, but more likely an anonymous computer expert with a penchant for making cash from other businesses’ network. And this new-age theft is costing businesses millions of pounds. Luckily in Scotland there is an organisation solely dedicated to working as the link between the Police, the Government and Commerce - advising businesses on all the aspects they need to think about to keep every element of their trading secure.


The Bridge of Allan-based Scottish Business Crime Centre, which began in 1996, works across Scotland with many partner organisations and its objective is to create safe, resilient business across Scotland.


The area around Perth and Kinross is an interesting one because it has such a unique and diverse culture and hence trading environment. On the one hand there is the high street and nighttime economy and on the other there is a rural dimension encompassing its own interests including farming, fishing, rural businesses and a more geographically diverse population. There are many highly successful and well-known companies ranging from distilleries to restaurants which make up this distinctive and internationally renowned area. Equally important are the smaller businesses, crafts, arts and sports businesses and on-line traders who need to be confident that how they are operating is secure and follows the latest best practice. “We recognise the unique aspect to the countryside around Perth and Kinross,” explained Mandy Haeburn-Little, Director of the SBCC. “At SBCC, we exist to give advice, support and assistance to members from the smallest to medium sized businesses, right through to those of a multi national scale. No matter what size the business is, we are here to provide that help and whether it be practical advice on the safer retail awards, wider safer town and area awards and right through to responsible pubs and clubs, we have a wealth of information.”

Business protection One of the growing areas that businesses often feel less sure about is the area of on-line and e-crime. Gary Ritchie, Assistant Director of the Centre explains: “e-Crime generally refers to a criminal activity where a computer or computer network is the source, tool, target, or place of a crime. Despite the inevitable references to ‘computers’ or ‘online activity’, e-Crime nevertheless encompasses a whole raft of ‘traditional’ crimes - such as fraud, theft, blackmail, forgery and embezzlement. “e-Crime is notoriously difficult to detect and punish because of its sheer technical complexity and because unseen attackers can strike victims from hundreds or even thousands of miles away,” he added. “Due to the nature of e-Crime and its ability to evolve with technology, new threats are emerging with an alarming degree of regularity and simply maintaining a better appreciation of the risks we face could have a significant effect on your ability to respond to them if the need arises. “The majority of businesses may be confident that their existing IT security precautions will provide them with sufficient protection from all significant online security threats,” explained Gary, “but every year thousands of businesses still fall victim to e-Crime, despite having such precautions in place.” In response to this ever evolving threat the Scottish Business Crime Centre together with a range of partners created the e-Crime Scotland website where a range of free advice is given to those who wish to download its content. The site is relatively new and already hosts a number of factsheets and videos to help keep businesses safe whilst online. More information can be found at e-Crime Scotland is a partnership organisation involving police forces, public and private sectors which tackles the costly threat of e-crime to the Scottish economy. It shares intelligence and increases awareness of and knowledge about the risks facing businesses and the prevention measures which can be taken. The organisation stresses that no business should be deluded into thinking they are not attractive to the e-criminal. The number of cyber crimes against small and medium sized businesses continues to grow and the effect of such crime can often be more devastating on them than the impact on large companies. e-Crime Scotland offers a variety of guides and factsheets to download which businesses of all sizes should read. They are designed for the “non-techies” to understand and can help raise awareness and promote best practice within your workforce. Simply register free of charge at uk in order to access a wide ranging catalogue of advice and information.




19 Marshall Place, Perth PH2 8AG

(01738) 441144

Award winning customer service: Financial Times and Investors Chronicle Stockbroker of the Year 2011

Get Ahead!


he innovative Education into Enterprise work placement programme is now fully launched across Scottish businesses, with many work placements underway. Education into Enterprise (EiE) provides employers with student resource to work on project based activity, delivering tangible benefits for the businesses involved. Employers lead on the length and timing of the placements, are assisted directly by the work placement co-ordinators in scoping and launching the project work, and are supported throughout the duration of the placements with practical project management advice. The Scottish Chambers of Commerce is the lead business partner for the programme, working closely with the Alliance of Sector Skills Councils Scotland to ensure business needs are managed effectively. The programme is managed within the area by Abertay University, Dundee College, Adam Smith College and Elmwood College. Students are also available from the nearby Forth Valley College and West Lothian College – all within a commutable distance from Perth businesses. The above establishments currently have over 200 students registered with the programme; students eager to become involved with local businesses and use their skills to deliver project benefits. The dedicated team of EiE co-ordinators is busy working with local businesses, short-listing students for the current placements and sourcing more placements for release. The programme has many companies already registered with placements currently available in areas such as IT, Marketing, Administration, Web Design and Construction Management.  Businesses are being targeted across a wide variety of sectors and the co-ordinators are more than happy to visit individuals and discuss their business requirements with a view to matching the appropriately qualified student to the placement.  If you are interested in finding out more – register now at and you will be contacted by the local EiE co-ordinator. If you would rather speak to a co-ordinator directly at this stage, please contact Nicola Tully ( or Munwar Hussain (m.hussain@ who will be happy to run through the programme, and ensure that you are matched with a student who best suits your needs from those registered across all programme partners.



Established in 1875 Investments and income paid on them can fall in value. Redmayne-Bentley LLP is a limited liability partnership. Registered in England and Wales. Registered No: OC344361 Registered office: 9 Bond Court, Leeds, LS1 2JZ. Members of the London Stock Exchange. Authorised and Regulated by the Financial Services Authority.

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Doing business without advertising is like winking at a girl in the dark. You know what you are doing, but nobody Steuart Henderson Britt else does. ✓ FREE Quality Publication ✓ Targeted Distribution

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Star A wards 2011


Chamber President Stephen Leckie with the Overall Winners, the Perthshire Business of the Year The Bathroom Company Lawrence Haddow & Fiona Lowry


he Perth-based Bathroom Company is flushed with success after being crowned Perthshire’s top business. The Leonard Street company lifted the Perthshire Chamber of Commerce 2011 Business Of The Year title at a glittering Star Awards ceremony in Crieff on Friday evening. Managing director Lawrence Haddow and delighted staff from the 18-year-old family business were showered with praise after securing the Marketing Campaign category trophy and going on to claim the overall trophy and title. Around 300 guests heard how The Bathroom Company captured the judges’ vote for its “success, passion and drive”. The company retails, designs and installs high quality bathrooms to both private and commercial clients and employs 13 installers and a further five staff at their 4,500 sq ft showroom. Chamber President Stephen Leckie said: “The Bathroom Company is a small independent, local retail company which has achieved not only financial growth but also UK wide national recognition despite the economic downturn which has affected many others in its sector. “The Bathroom Company won the overall Perthshire Business of the Year title because of the huge impact that embracing marketing for the first time has had on the business operation, profit and culture over the last year,” he explained. “They demonstrated real passion for the business and also for their new found advocacy of marketing with commendable success.” A delighted and proud Mr Haddow said the award proved that a small Scottish business based in Perth can, when it’s focussed, compete with the best and win. Winning this award is really special. “We’ve proven that you don’t have to spend a fortune, but can be creative and still have a major impact on your business,” he said. ”We had the nerve to invest, at a difficult time, and the sense to make it cost-effective. And in marketing we’ve embraced something new,

and sometimes a little bit scary, which has really helped to secure our business.” Stephen Leckie also presented an “Outstanding Achievement” Award to Stagecoach boss Sir Brian Souter – Perth’s ultimate entrepreneur. One of the UK’s leading businessmen, Sir Brian is a significant supporter of charitable causes and the country’s leading public transport innovator. He co-founded Stagecoach with his sister, Ann Gloag, in 1980 with just two buses and has developed the company into a leading international transport group in the UK and North America with 35,000 employees and an annual turnover of more than £2billion. Sir Brian, who was Knighted this year, and the 11 Business Star category winners each secured a bespoke piece of Sarah Peterson glassware which reflected the black and white theme of the evening and the Chamber’s recognisable Star Award profile. Chamber Chief Executive Vicki Unite reflected on a “fantastic event”. “It was a fabulous night and it was great to see the business community get together to celebrate this year’s top achievers. We know from experience that there can be a real business benefit for winners – and finalists – and that is the underlying reason for our Star Awards. Winners and finalists have a tool that sets them apart from their competitors and this is extremely valuable – particularly in such testing times.” This year’s premier business awards event was held at the Crieff Hydro Hotel and was hosted by journalist/broadcaster Maureen Young and Tay FM’s Gary Robinson. Entertainment was provided by Perth children’s choir Jambouree and live band Big Vern And The Shootahs. Fundraising on the night went to support Jambouree, HomeStart Perth, Logos Centre Crieff and PKAVS.




Perthshire's Business Stars Other business stars recognised and rewarded at the black tie dinner were: Tay FM Young Business Person of the Year Award Michael Boyle Jnr, Boyles Stonemasons

Tay FM Young Business Person of the Year winner Michael Boyle jnr receives his award from Gary

Perth and Kinross Council Apprentice Employee of the Year Award Victoria Beattie, Auchterarder Gymnastics Trust Bank of Scotland Most Promising New Business Award Hettie’s Tearooms & Catering

Perth & Kinross Council Apprentice Employee of the Year Award winner Victoria Beattie receives her award from David Littlejohn

Royal Bank of Scotland Customer Service Award Rapid Tyre Services Stagecoach Group Sustainability Award Horsecross Arts InCommerce Marketing Campaign of the Year Award The Bathroom Company (Perth)

Bank of Scotland Most Promising New Business Award winners Calre Pinchbeck (left) and Nikki Martin recieive their award from Nigel Walker

The Famous Grouse Experience Event of the Year Award The Enchanted Forest Highly Commended - Newbiz, Perth College UHI

Black & Lizars in association with Hine Opticians Business Innovation Award Douglas Baillie Highly Commended - Aviva Insurance Royal Bank of Scotland Customer Service Award winner Guy Halley receieves his award from Vic Biccochi

Squirrel Self Store Training & Development Award The Famous Grouse Experience Highland Spring Charity of the Year Award PKAVS

Stagecoach Group Sustainabilty Award winner Louisa Jacobs receives her award from Sir Brian Souter Pictures by Graeme Hart.



Binn Skips Business in the Community Award Horsecross Arts

Highly Commended- Heartland FM



upport sponsorship for the glamorous event came from Perth and Kinross Council and media sponsors Tay FM and The Famous Grouse Experience. Trophies were designed, created and donated by Sarah Peterson of Caithness Glass. Guests enjoyed a sumptuous dinner with wine and once again Highland Spring provided the water for the evening.

Binn Skips Business in the Community Award winner Jen Minchin receievs her award fromLouise McGregor and Carol Holbein-Neville

Sound and light production and expertise for the show were provided by Catalyst EPS. Johnston Media handled all video work before and during the event. A charity prize draw won Mr and Mrs J Wheatley return flights Dundee/London City courtesy of City Jet plus a two night stay thanks to De Vere Devonport House.

The Famous Grouse Experience Event of the Year Award winners Karen Aycian, Tricia Fox & Cathy Joss receive their award from Tracey McAfferty

Coaches were provided by Squirrel Self Store/Ptarmigan Transport Solutions and Stagecoach Group.

Black & Lizars in association with Hine Opticians Business Award winner Douglas Baillie snr receives his award from Nick Hine and Mark Ross

InCommerce Marketing Campaign of the Year Award winners Lawrence Haddow and Fiona Lowry receive their award from Mark Fergsuon

Squirrel Self Store Training & Development Award winners Tracey McAfferty, Natasha Monroe and Pat Mahon receive their award from Stuart Newing-Davis

Brian Souter receieves his award from Chamber President Stephen Leckie.

Highland Spring Charity of the Year Award winners Helen Mackinnon and Karen Cowley receive their award from Chris Livingstone Pictures by Graeme Hart.




A Night to Remember

Big Vern and the Shooters

Sir Brian Souter talks with Chamber President Stephen Leckie

Chamber President Stephen Leckie and Provost John Hulbert announce the Overall Winner, the Perthshire Business of the Year The Bathroom Company.



Lady Provost Sara Hulbert with Citjet prize winner


Jamboree Children’s Choir

Hosts Maureen Young and Gary Robinson

Chamber President Stephen Leckie

Pictures courtesy of Graeme Hart, Perthshire Picture Agency.



Straight Talking Hard Working Forward Thinking 100% Customer Care Attitude

Skip hire (2yd to 16yd) Roll on roll off hire (20yd to 50yd) Recycling Trade waste Road brush hire Composting Compactor hire Wood processing Plant hire Aggregate Top soil Liquid waste disposal Septic tank emptying Agricultural waste

Every local authority and business need a reliable, committed and efficient waste management solution to link recycling, waste minimisation and the best value for money. Binn Waste meet that requirement in every way. Binn Waste have a strong commitment to our customers old and new. We also put a lot of time, resources and money back into the local community. With over 14 years experience in the waste industry Binn Waste are one of Scotland’s leading and forward thinking waste management companies focusing on recycling and improving the environment around us.

Binn Farm • Glenfarg • Perthshire PH2 9PX Tel: 01577 830833 Fax: 01577 830488 •

Join our greener journey Our customers tell us they want greener travel. And they want to get on board with a company that is serious about making its business more sustainable. We are proud to have had independent recognition for the steps we are taking to meet our environmental responsibilities, become more energy efficient and help play our part in meeting the challenge of climate change. But we know life is about more than awards and we must keep on doing more. That’s why our comprehensive carbon management plan is designed to drive further improvements right across our business in the UK and North America. From hi-tech projects using new technology to simple yet smart initiatives by our employees, our £11million green investment programme is building on our success.

Not all transport is the same. Let us show you the route to greener smarter travel.

Working for Sustainable Employment. The Life Skills Group (LifeSkills Central Ltd) is a progressive and innovative provider of training for not only unemployed people, but aimed at those wishing to enhance and sustain their employment opportunities. Incorporated in 2008, Life Skills Central Ltd is an awardwinning company based in Hamilton the organisations ethos is simple. “Working for Sustainable Employment.” Every company needs high quality employees. Skilled, motivated people working alongside others in focused teams are essential to the success of an organisation. The strength of any business is built on the productivity, drive and enthusiasm of the individuals working for it. The Centre works with individuals seeking work and we work alongside numerous employers within Tayside who can give these clients work experience on a Placement within their occupational skills-set, but we also provide active help for those who are in work and want to enhance and sustain their job opportunities. One of our main activities is in vocational training. This takes a number of different forms. For instance, we work with ILA Scotland – a Scottish Government scheme that helps individuals pay for learning that they can take part in at any time, or place and in a way that suits them, training at little or no cost to the employers. This scheme is designed for people aged 16 or over who have an income of £22,000 a year or less, or who are on benefits. They can obtain £200 a year towards a wide range of courses carried out within our training centre here in Perth, or self study with tutor support.

We are a Learn Direct Scotland branded centre and ILA (Individual Learning Account) Scotland approved provider. If you are 16 or over, living in Scotland and your income is £22,000 or less, or if you are on benefits, you can get up to £200 a year towards a wide range of courses from learning providers throughout Scotland. Call free on 0808 100 1090 to apply now or apply online at

Examples of training available: First Aid; Health & Safety; Food & Hygiene; CSCS Health & Safety; Sage Payroll / Accounts; various levels of IT applications all with recognised certification. We also offer highly competitive Conference facilities, hire of large training room, seats up to 50 delegates, Wireless Internet connection, access to Laptops, catering requirements also available, situated in the heart of the City of Perth with parking nearby. Email or phone: - (01738) 449894 Sheila Thomson (Business Manager)

Life Skills Centres, Tayside, Drummond House, 6 Scott Street, Perth PH1 5EJ

(01738) 449894

r f ne r o in be W d m ds an d ha r C wa cotl war ire r A f S e A o ic sh Sta rth e nk rv Pe erc l Ba r Se m a e oy tom om R us C


Call now for a competitive quote

TELEPHONE: 0786 333 5888

Mobile Tyre Fitting Service

“We come to you” Top brand and budget tyres available Tyres Fitted from £19.99 inc VAT Fully fitted at your door!

Business support

Special Occasions Hospitality Corporate Events

P PREMIER Venue erth’s


erth & Kinross Council’s continuing efforts to help local people get into work has taken a further step forward with the opening of ‘The Hub’, a new employability drop-in centre. The Hub has been set up in conjunction with partner agencies (including the Perthshire Chamber of Commerce) in the Perth & Kinross Employment Connections Partnership and is based in Unit 37b in St John’s Shopping Centre, close to the South Street entrance. Council officers and colleagues from other organisations including the Jobcentre and Skills Development Scotland will staff the Hub. Its focus is on enabling job-hunters to boost their employability skills so they can get into sustainable work covering building a CV, letter writing, completing application forms, telephone techniques and mock interviews. Anyone using the centre will also have access to newspapers and computers for job searches, and free stationery and stamps to help with making applications. Customers are welcome to drop in anytime between 9.30am and 4.30pm Monday to Friday. Experienced staff will assist them to complete a job readiness assessment to highlight any additional support they may need The Hub will also be used to signpost clients, who would like further information on training, volunteering or education opportunities to help them get to a job-ready stage, to other agencies who can provide this.

employment connections Perth & Kinross


Call 01738 459090

Strang & McLagan

Funeral Directors & Memorial Consultants Main Office and Funeral Home

Newlands House, Main Street Bridgend, Perth Also at 20 Atholl Street, Perth 36 Priory Place, Craigie, Perth 62 High Street, Crieff

Part of Dignity Funerals Ltd

24 Hour / 7 Day Service Private Service Chapel and Rest Rooms Care, consideration and expertise gained over more than a century

Memorial Consultants



Member of National Association of Funeral Directors

new member profiles

Aptia Aptia was founded in 2009 by Gavin Sime and Dr Lindsay Fielding to provide management, sales and marketing services to SME businesses. The partners are experienced, commercially focused professionals who have the pedigree to assist a business to:

Aptia Ltd Suite 35, BIK, Myregormie Industrial Estate, Kirkcaldy, Fife KY1 3NA Tel: 07833 700237 Email: Web: www.aptia Contact: Gavin Sime

develop and deliver a business plan

increase market awareness of the firm’s products and services

improve their sales pipeline

grow their market share

Having local, national and international experience within a range of sectors, Aptia works with their clients to deliver business growth services flexibly and competently. Experienced in ‘business to business’ and ‘business to consumer’ engagement, Aptia understands solutions, services and product environments. They operate well at senior and executive levels, whilst being more than comfortable in “rolling their sleeves up” as one of the team. Aptia operates in 4 areas:

Consultancy and support services – working on a specific project or on an on-going basis as part of the management team Online community creation – Aptia owns the intellectual property around MemberNet, an online community platform. An example of this is PerthshireOnline ( which has over 400 businesses registered and over 10,000 page views monthly. LaunchBox – supports the new business start-up market and provides everything a startup needs to get up and trading ( PerthshireOnline. TV – an internet TV channel focused on all things Perthshire. The weekly programme is of a magazine style and the channel includes an online shop in order that businesses can further promote their products, services and events.

By James

By James 1-3 Wellmeadow Place Blairgowrie Perthshire PH10 6NQ Email: Web: Contact: David Davidson

By James: Quality Has Their Name on It. By James, a new kitchen and bathroom showroom in the heart of Blairgowrie, launched earlier this year. The showroom, which is privately owned, is symbolic of the regeneration that is beginning to take shape in the area, and demonstrates a significant investment by the owners in the restoration of this historic property into a modern and state of the art showroom. Opened by local MSP John Swinney, the business has gone from strength to strength, serving customers across Scotland with a wide range of quality designer bathroom and kitchens. The store has quickly become a Blairgowrie tourist attraction, with a glass bath in the window attracting regular attention from passers by. Managing Director of By James, David Davidson, commented: “We carefully selected Blairgowrie as a centre for this business and feel we’ve got a prime location with all the makings of a successful business as a direct result. The local Perthshire business community has been exceptionally welcoming and we’re very proud to be such an integral part of the burgeoning Blairgowrie business sector. The glass bath has been a real novelty for visitors to the area as well as local people, many of whom have stopped to look in the window at this stunning bathroom

icon. However, once in the showroom, customers are always glad to see that the vast majority of our ranges are much more suited to those of us with slightly less ostentatious needs!” By James is open Monday – Saturday, 9am – 5pm in Wellmeadow Blairgowrie.


CityJet Regus Building, 37th Floor 1 Canada Square, London E14 5AA Tel: 0207 718 0139 E-mail: Web: Contact: Helen Breen

CityJet, the airline that flies to the heart of London from both Dundee and Edinburgh, offers competitive all-inclusive fares to London City Airport from Dundee, especially when booking in advance. Compared to other transport offerings, CityJet is the easiest and quickest way to fly to the centre of London CityJet is the largest carrier operating out of London City Airport.  Daily, they offer up to 3 flights a day from Dundee to London, and Edinburgh to London.  In total, they offer over 680 flights a week, 480 of them from this conveniently-located airport to 17 destinations in the UK, Ireland, France Holland, Belgium, Italy and Luxembourg At London City, the closest airport to Central London, passengers can check-in just 15 minutes prior to departure (20 minutes with hold baggage).  Likewise, travel through Dundee airport is extremely quick and hassle-free. CityJet fares include all taxes and charges, and customers enjoy a choice of online, mobile or airport check-in, advance seat assignment, free checked baggage, including golf bags, and complimentary beverages and light meals on board.

In order to receive maximum benefit when flying, they recommend all passengers sign up to their airmiles system, Flying Blue. For small companies, they also offer company flight accounts, called BlueBiz, which work in a similar manner to airmiles. See for the full range of services. Benefits received from using Flying Blue and BlueBiz apply to all flights in the Air France-KLM and partner global network! For more information, reservations and to check-in online, visit



new member profiles

Crieff Visitor Centre

Crieff Vistor Centre Muthill Road, Crieff Perthshire PH7 4HQ Tel: 01764 654 014 Email: Web: Contact: Stuart McLaren

Crieff Visitor Centre is a popular visitor attraction set in the heart of beautiful Strathearn on the outskirts of Crieff. Easily accessible from all directions with plenty of FREE parking, it’s been welcoming visitors since 1985. A great choice for a family day out with a wide variety of options to choose from. You can spend a few hours at the Four Star Centre whilst you: Explore the Highland Drovers Exhibition – retrace the steps and lives of the intrepid men who walked from all areas in the north and west to the October Trysts (Market) in Crieff and often onwards to London braving poor conditions and the threat of rustlers. Browse the gift shops and retail areas including a new Fashion and accessories department. Major brands stocked including Ness, Borders Fine Arts, Heathergems, Smith & Canova & Arran Aromatics as well as top brands of Whisky and liqueurs. New Fashion Department with exciting, exclusive new designer range from Byoni - Relax in the welcoming 180 seater Drovers Restaurant and enjoy great value snacks and refreshments, freshly baked cakes and scones and an excellent selection of hot meals from Breakfast to High Tea!

Delight in the range of plants, shrubs and trees in the quality Garden Centre Make your own paperweight in the Caithness Glass factory Workshop. Discover the hidden paths and walks around the centre and the children’s Spaceframe! Open 7 Days 9am to 5pm. Exhibition 10am to 4pm – FREE entry. Great group incentives available for prebooked visits – call, email or visit for more info.


DP&L Travel Management McEwens of Perth 56-72 St John Street, Perth PH1 5SN Tel: 01738 700800 Fax: 01738 700777 Email: Web: Contact: Dawn Henderson

Welcome to DP&L Travel Management at McEwens. DP&L Travel Management is part of an organisation with more than 150 years of experience in travel related services. A leading independent travel management company, committed to delivering quality service with added value to ensure the best blend of corporate travel and expense management solutions for their clients. DP&L Travel Management ensures your corporate travel is less complex and more cost effective, working with you to achieve an efficient, tailor-made programme to suit your company requirements. A local independent company, they are a member of the Advantage Focus Partnership which makes up the largest independent Travel Management organisation in the UK. With the increased buying power, this membership allows them to offer a full range of airfares and hotel rates ensuring exceptional value for money. DP&L removes the pressure of Travel Management, giving you the peace of mind and security you would expect from your corporate travel specialist.

Bookable services include Worldwide Air Travel, Hotel Reservations and Car Hire; UK & Continental Rail Travel; Passport & Visa Service and Travel Insurance. Together with their reputation for quality, service and professionalism, and the benefit of being situated in the centre of Perth, DP&L Business Travel is the perfect choice for all your corporate needs. As a fully ABTA Bonded and ATOL Protected Travel Agency, you can also book your holidays in confidence with DP&L Travel at McEwens. They offer a full range of leisure travel services including competitively priced Package Holidays; Cruises; City Breaks; Special Interest and Tailor Made Itineraries.

Dr Alister W Coutts & Partners LLP

DR ALISTER W COUTTS & PARTNERS LLP 29 Lady Nairne Drive Perth PH1 1RF Tel: 01738 565749 Email: Web: Contact: Dr Alister Coutts


Dr Alister W Coutts & Partners was established by the Senior Partner to use his 40 years of experience to provide high quality construction and management consultancy services to clients seeking cost effective advice and assistance. The Partnership is multi-disciplinary offering a variety of services and undertaking a multiplicity of roles to meet their clients’ requirements. They provide a wide range of specialist services that are outside the normal skill set of traditional construction and management consultants. Alister Coutts founded the Partnership to provide services to clients using his unrivalled experience, having served as a Civil Servant with the Hong Kong Government, as a Senior Manager in the highly successful Hong Kong MTR Corporation; as a full Board Director with DCI (Holdings) Ltd., the Glasgow-based Property Developer & Facilities Management Contractor; as the Director of Operations with Fife Heath Board; as the Director of Property & Architectural Services with The Highland Council and finally as a Partner & Head of Public Sector Services with Robinson Low Francis LLP, the international property and construction consultants.


As a result, Dr Alister W Coutts & Partners can offer the following services: •

Interim Management

Direction of Public Private Partnership initiatives

• • • • • • •

Project and Programme Management

Acting as the Project Director, Lead Negotiator and/or Employer’s Agent for complex schemes

Workshops on Strategic Management, Project Management and Contract Administration Research into Strategic, Construction Issues Preparation of documentation



Construction Procurement Management Consultancy


and Tender

new member profiles

LEBC Group

LEBC GROUP 34/36 Rose Street North Lane Edinburgh EH2 2NP Tel: 0131 226 8300 Fax: 0131 226 8333 Email: Web: Contact: Jaffrey Weir

LEBC Group is a national firm of professional independent financial planners, with 12 offices spread across the UK. The company was established in 2000, their vision being to create a national company dedicated to providing expert, and truly independent financial advice to all clients. They have achieved their aim by employing only top-quality independent financial advisers, who advise from a position of informed expertise, underpinned by the highest ethical standards and with a common philosophy: “To forge long term relationships with clients and to provide expert, independent advice”. Client relationships are of paramount importance to them and they feel that to be most effective, their advice must be delivered in a long term relationship of mutual trust. The creation and maintenance of such relationships is the key to their success.

The specialisations of their consultant staff enable them to provide expert advice across the spectrum of financial services from corporate pensions and risk benefits to personal retirement planning and investment. Their independence ensures that they always act in the interests of their clients, and their interests alone. For further information or to book a no-obligation consultation, please contact Jaffrey Weir, LEBC Group Ltd.

Ochil Foods

OCHIL FOODS Hall Farm, Auchterarder, Perthshire PH3 1HD Tel: 01764 662 502 Email: Web: Contact: Jeremy Dixon

Ochil Foods -Scotland’s leading Poultier, Gamedealer and Speciality fine foods suppliers, based in Perthshire serving chefs throughout Scotland. Ochil Foods is a long established family business near Auchterarder, providing chefs, butchers and caterers with quality ingredients, sourced throughout Perthshire, Scotland and the rest of the world. Their ever expanding range covers poultry, game, fish, oils, cheeses, chocolate and much more.  They now have over 1000 lines. Their reputation for excellence stems from their attention to detail, flexibility and passion for quality food found in three generations of family employees. They are always searching for new and innovative ideas to provide their customers with “the quality ingredient”. They are extremely proud of their rich heritage supplying the catering trade from their farm base near Aberuthven since 1953. Starting with Jeremy Dixon’s Grandfather’s Turkeys and expanding the range with the purchase of Ochil Foods in 1985 they haven’t stopped finding new ingredients since.

The Dixon family is still at the heart of Ochil Foods from Annie who is the first point of contact in the office to Neil who personally runs the warehouse, checking the quality of each dispatched order and son Jeremy who organises sales and liaises with the customer base, building new business and sourcing/promoting new products, in response to customer demand.   The majority of their best customers and suppliers can be found locally, and they are always looking to build more long lasting relationships with other Perthshire businesses. So, if you are a hotel owner, restaurateur, butcher, caterer or chef, please feel free to get in touch.

Summers Restaurant

SUMMERS RESTAURANT 16 St Johns Place, Perth PH1 5SZ Tel: 01738 626673 Email: Web: Contact: Alex Summers

Former Executive and Award Winning Chef at the prestigious 4 star Crieff Hydro, Alec James Summers has followed his dream and opened his first restaurant, aptly named “SUMMERS” at 16 St John’s Place, Perth (opposite the City Hall). The concept is friendly staff offering “Great, Fresh Scottish Food” within a relaxed atmosphere. Summers opens for morning coffee and freshly baked scones and traybakes. The daytime menu is available from 9am (includes baked potatoes with various fillings, salad selection, steak burgers, breaded chicken fillets and traditional hand battered haddock). The evening menu starts at 5pm, when the restaurant transforms itself into a Brasserie feel and the menu includes smoked salmon roulade, sautéed wild mushrooms, king prawns, sea bass, lamb shank, supreme of chicken, asparagus tartlet and a selection of steaks. In addition, there is a selection of daily blackboard specials (eg steamed mussels, medallion of beef fillet, barbecue ribs, scallops with black pudding and sticky chicken). The team also offers homemade cocktails.

Over two levels, Summers has seating for up to 55 downstairs and a further 35 upstairs. The weather has got chillier recently but before this, up to 40 people enjoyed eating outside. For that extra special touch, Alec invites his customers to meet with him prior to their special occasion and write their own dinner menus which Alec will deliver. Call to book a table for lunch or dinner. They’re currently taking bookings for the festive menu throughout December and for Christmas day and Hogmanay.



Food & DRINK

Wild Game a life blood for the rural Perthshire economy N

eil and Jeremy Dixon, father and son owners of Ochil Foods, highlight the wealth of natural game resource in Perthshire’s rivers and countryside.


Fine Food is at the heart of the Perthshire economy and we deal with producers who have developed the finest examples ranging from rapeseed oil and oatcakes to soft fruits and fine herbs. But this time of year is all about wild game. And it seems as a nation we simply can’t get enough of it. The old fashioned image of game and venison as a preserve of the wealthy has thankfully been eroded and rightly so. For not only is it absolutely delicious, it is also the ultimate free range product (wild), extremely healthy, sustainable (low food miles), provides numerous jobs for the local economy, boosts tourism, helps fund the management of our countryside and is surprisingly cheap. Game and venison has only recently grown in popularity but the increase has risen so sharply in the last 10 years that sales are set to hit over £80 million this year. This growing trend is a vital cog in the Perthshire economy. As specialist restaurant suppliers and game dealers, Ochil Foods can sell Pheasant, Pigeon, Partridge, Mallard Duck and Second Season Grouse Breasts for the same price or less than the cost of a barn reared chicken supreme. This fact has not been lost on our customers in all shapes and sizes from our local village pub to the double Michelin-Starred Andrew Fairlie Restaurant, whose diners seem to be lapping up game in equal measure.


Stalking and fishing in Scotland produces a vast number of fulltime and seasonal part-time jobs for gamekeepers, wildlife rangers, ghillies and stalkers. These people are the true custodians of our countryside and their dedication and knowledge is a major reason that the UK has a far more diverse and flourishing bird and wildlife population than many of our European neighbours. We buy our game from estates throughout Perthshire, including Ardargie in the Ochil Hills, which is managed by Charlie Thorburn and his team. Charlie is an expert gun dog trainer turned shoot organiser whose clients come from across the globe to shoot in Scotland and he maintains that Perthshire is viewed internationally as the Ultimate Sporting Destination. Away from the stunning countryside, rivers and shooting fields and into the kitchen, our chefs in Perthshire are stepping up to the plate. We as a company have seen an increased appetite for learning about food provenance, making our job so much more pleasurable and as a result more and more menus feature products grown, reared or produced in rural Perthshire. However, game isn’t purely the preserve of haute cuisine… as pheasant can cost considerably less than chicken, it can be used in the home as a superior alternative in more simple dishes such as curries and casseroles. So choose game, not only will you be selecting a low cost healthy option, you will be supporting Perthshire’s rural economy and environment - and guaranteeing yourself a delicious meal in the process!

Here are two recipe ideas to get you started...

Venison Stew with Herb Dumplings

Tim Dovers, The Roost Restaurant, Bridge of Earn

Serves 4 2lbs (0.9kg) stewing venison 4oz (100g) streaky bacon 1 pint (560cl) game stock 1oz (28g) plain flour 1oz (28g) unsalted butter 1 bouquet garni Salt / pepper 2 carrots peeled and diced Half an onion finely chopped 1 turnip (approx 400g) peeled and diced (or celeriac) Oil for frying Method: Cut venison into cubes about 2.5 (1”) sauté off in the frying an in hot oil then transfer to large stew pan or casserole. Saute off onions without browning too much, add to venison. Dice bacon into 1.25cm (1⁄2”) cubes, sauté off add to venison. Cover all the ingredients with game stock. Work flour and butter together then add to stew in small pieces. Add bouquet garni, some salt and freshly ground black pepper – cover and simmer gently for about 11⁄2 hours or in preheated oven 300f/150C gas mark 2 for about the same time. Add carrot/turnip, stir and bring back to the boil and simmer for a further 1 hour or until tender. Dumplings: (makes about 8-10) 10cl milk 1 egg yolk 125g (1⁄4lb) fresh white bread crumbs 15g (1⁄2oz) plain flour 50g butter melted, cooled to luke warm 1⁄2 tablespoon chopped fresh herbs (flat leaf parsley, chervil, tarragon) salt to taste Method: Beat milk and egg yolk together with a pinch of salt. Pour mixture over the bread crumbs and leave to soak for 1 hour or more. Mix flour and melted butter then beat into breadcrumbs add chopped herbs, mix until smooth. Turn mixture on to floured board then shape dough into balls about 1” (2.5cm) diameter, leave to rest for about 15 minutes. Fill large pan with water add salt bring to the boil drop dumplings in few at a time then cook until they rise to the surface, drain and reserve. To Serve: Put dumplings into stew, bring back to boil, simmer and serve. Both the stew and the dumplings can be made in advance then reheated when required. No dumplings should be reheated in the stew.

Seared Scottish Mallard Duck on a Mini Potato Rosti with a Pumpkin Puree and Caramelised Shallot Tania Dixon, Ginger Snap

To Make 30 Canapés 2 Mallard Duck Breasts 450g Potatoes (Maris Pipers work well for this) 1 Small Pumpkin 25g Butter 4 Shallots, finely Sliced 125ml Red Wine 25g Soft Brown Sugar 25ml Summer Harvest Rape Seed Oil 25g Butter Salt and Pepper Method: Peel the pumpkin and put aside the seeds. Dice the pumpkin into 2mc pieces. Place on a baking tray season with salt and pepper and drizzle with a small amount of Summer Harvest Oil. Place in the oven at 180 degrees and roast for about 30 minutes or until the pumpkin is soft. Once cooked place in a food processor and blend until smooth – add the butter and check the seasoning – add more salt and pepper if needed. Peel the potatoes and par-boil them for 5 minutes (until the heat is all the way through the potato). You do not want the potato to be soft as this will make the rosti resemble mashed potatoes. Once boiled, strain the potatoes and leave them to cool for about 30 minutes. Heat some butter in a pan and sautée the shallots, add the red wine and soft brown sugar and reduce to a jam consistency. Once cooled grate the potatoes and season with salt and pepper. The mixture should be quite sticky. Shape into canapé sized rosti (about an inch in diameter). Trim the fat on the Duck and Season the Skin with Salt and Pepper. Place skin side down in a hot frying pan and leave until the skin is nice and crispy (usually 2-3 minutes) then turn over and cook for a further 4 minutes. Take off the heat and put aside to rest. (This can be done in advance and the canapé can be cold) To assemble the canapé – Heat some Summer Harvest Oil in a Frying Pan and shallow fry the potato rosti until golden brown. Reheat the Pumpkin Puree in a pan (reheating in the microwave is also just as easy) . Slice the duck very thinly. Place a teaspoon of pumpkin puree on the rosti and place and thin slice of the duck on top with a small amount of the caramelised shallot.




Scottish Skiing at Glenshee

Darren Morgan of Glenshee Ski School, Vice-Chairman of Glenshee Tourism Association, reflects on last season’s snowy success and looks forward to perfect pistes this winter.

“Having recently returned from the Telemark Level 3 course in Hintertux, it always amazes me how many folk have not heard of Glenshee or even skiing in Scotland. Is there skiing up there they ask? Please read on… Glenshee’s impressive 21 lifts and 36 runs offer an amazing diversity of natural terrain for all standards of skiers and snowboarders. Glenshee still offers the most extensive skiing and snowboarding in Scotland and serviced by Britain’s largest lift system, the runs extend over three valleys and four mountains to give an extensive and enjoyable variety of winter sport. After an impressive week of snow fall during the last week of November 2010, we all sat watching the news as the UK slowly came to a standstill. Here at Glenshee we were rubbing our hands as the resort came to life and runs were being groomed ready for the first weekend in December. With Glas Maol open so early in the season the crowds flocked to Glenshee and Dec 5th proved to be the busiest day of the season. My wife Tereza and I run the Ski School for Glenshee and things were a little hectic to say the least. We never believed we would see a season like the year before in 2009, yet here we were preparing to open up nearly four weeks earlier than then. Glenshee is still privately owned by six Directors who work their butts off all season to ensure the smooth running of the resort. In the four years that we have run the Ski School it has continued to grow each year and investment has been made across the board. With very little funding available for investment it has to come from profits.  However, every season there is always an upgrade of fences, lift huts and maintenance of equipment. Last season saw a new website launched and the newly installed panoramic cameras are all linked to the new website.  On the equipment front, a new hire fleet of skis, boards and boots were purchased for the start of the season. The purchase of a new Pisten Bully 600, which alone represents a £250 thousand investment, now brings the compliment of grooming machines to five. The driving crew do an excellent job with the groomers and last season saw the slopes in excellent condition.



New for this season has been a huge effort on the fences front again and the beginners’ areas of the Dink Dink tow has had much improvement work done. An entire new area has been developed for beginners and with a brand new rope tow system recently installed, this will prove invaluable for the many novices who visit Glenshee. Work is also on-going for the new access chair to be in place for the start of the new season. This will give access to the middle slopes of Claybokie and the Cairnwell runs and also the middle café. The new park area was also erected in Butcharts Coire which proved to be very popular. The 2010/11 season in total saw 122 days for snow sports and with only four lost to poor weather our Ski School was as busy as ever. By the start of the holiday Xmas/New Year period our team of instructors had assembled and for the second year in a row Xmas was a blur but great fun. The month of December saw some of the best conditions on record and the words including ‘off piste’, ‘freshies’ and ‘powder’ were frequently mentioned. One of the highlights of the season saw the Not Forgotten Association (war veterans from recent conflicts) stay with us at our lodge who skied all week. Some of the best conditions of the season prevailed with some notable achievements from many of the amputees who attended. The Ski Patrolling at Glenshee is run by Kate Hunter (Director) and has a patrol consisting of three full time patrollers and a pool of about 15 part timers. At busy times there is a non-skiing nurse or doctor on duty at base to triage casualties. Patrollers are encouraged to attend the five day patrol training course held at Nevis Range run by BASP after which there is a resort training day followed by on the job training throughout the season. The Glenshee Performance Squad trains every weekend and we have not lost a training day since 2009. Excellent coaches are on hand and races are attended by many. A new club hut was renovated for last season and with a regular attendance of 80 skiers and more for training, BASI will not be short of future instructors. In summary, the skier day numbers (including the season tickets for 2010/11 season) were 95,571. This compares with 2009/10 final totals of 116,400 from 110 days open. Overall, a very good season with some great conditions.”

Mountains of Adventure Skiing and Snowboarding Equipment Hire and Servicing Restaurants and Shop  

Glenshee Ski Centre Cairnwell, Braemar Aberdeenshire, AB35 5XU PHONE: (013397) 41320 FAX: (013397) 41665 E-mail us:

We are a small family run delicatessen and cafe, Daughter (Julie) and Mother (Lin). Been trading for four and a half years, serving home cooked food, including full breakfast, tasty soups and made to order sandwiches and panini. All baking is home made including scones, carrot cake and thick caramel slice. Deli and grocery products are mainly sourced from Scottish producers and suppliers, along with a selection of ingredients for around the world.

Normal opening hours Oct - Easter 8.30am til 5pm Thursday to Tuesday, Closed on Wednesday. Easter to Oct 8am til 5.30pm. If you are planning a day in the great outdoors, pop into the deli to fuel up before venturing out or enjoy a well earned coffee and cake afterwards. In January we had a wood burning stove installed which is proving a big draw for shoppers and walkers alike.

10 Ancaster Square, Callander, FK17 8ED Tel: 01877 331220 email:

of w fe i rs n av te ai r la bl e The Crowning Place of Scottish Kings Scone is a place that breathes history like nowhere else in Scotland. Once the seat of medieval parliaments and the crowning place of Scottish Kings, today it is the home to the Earls of Mansfield, and a major attraction to visitors from all over the world. Poised above the River Tay, the Palace overlooks the routes north to the Highlands and across the river to the city of Perth. Set in 100 acres of magnificent grounds and gardens featuring David Douglas’ original fir and the unique Murray Star Maze. Combining unique heritage and a stunning location, Scone Palace is the perfect venue for corporate entertaining, product launches, receptions, weddings, family celebrations, concerts and events. Our dedicated team of professionals will ensure your event is a glittering success from start to finish.

t: 01738 552300 e: w:

Member to Member Discounts Members of Perthshire Chamber support their fellow members in many ways. One of the ways is to submit a Member to Member offer. Full details can be seen by going to our homepage: & clicking on Member Only Discounts from the left hand menu options. Please note that you will have to refer to our website for relevant codes and any terms and conditions. 1 Office Solutions LTD 20% discount on all products & services plus a free IT Print Audit.

Express by Holiday Inn - Perth 3 nights for the price of 2 from £60 per room subject to availability.

Aberdein Considine AC & Co will provide a free employee benefits review.

The Famous Grouse Experience 2 tours for the price of 1 for Experience Tours only.

Alexander Residence 10% off bookings.

Gillies & Mackay Ltd 5% discount on buildings (sheds, summerhouses, garden offices, playhouses etc) to Chamber members.

Algo Business Centre 10% off meeting rooms. ASI Outsourcing ½ price set up fee for Mystery Shopping packages + 10% disc + 1 hour free introductory meeting. Alex Cairncross Silver Gifts 10% discount to Chamber Members - Code PCC10. Steven Bonthrone, Personal Trainer Personal Coaching Session 1 x 60 mins £32 instead of £35 or 10% off block of 10. Inc. personalised fitness program, nutritional review and lifestyle guidance. Bannatyne’s Health Club Perthshire Chamber members will receive 75% off joining fee.

Hetties Tearooms Afternoon Tea in Hettie’s throughout December through February 2012 receive an additional pot of your favourite Hettie’s Tea at no extra cost. Iain Burnett Highland Chocolatier Free Langue du Chat on visit (a milk, dark or white chocolate French style biscuit that is pure artisan gourmet chocolate!) Inveralmond Business Centre 30% off meeting rooms.

Perthshire P.A.T Services Introductory discount of 10% for portable appliance testing. Professional Mortgage Advisers Ltd Fee of £250 to members (set fee is currently £295). Renewable Energy Consultants Ltd Free initial consultation to identify the most lucrative routes for investment in Renewables. Salutation Hotel 10% discount on any function, conference or event. If event above 100 people complimentary B&B for organiser & their partner including full Scottish Breakfast. Scott Hotels 2 nights DB&B for the price of 1 - only £92.00 pp at any Scott hotel inc. Angus Hotel, Blairgowrie, Perthshire plus 25% discount all meeting room, delegate & half-day delegate rates at both the Angus Hotel, Blairgowrie.

King James VI Business Centre 25% off Boardroom hire Monday to Friday.

Johnston Mailing Ltd 15% discount trial offer.

Companies Direct 10% discount on all company formation & business support products & services (excl. basic incorporation package)

Keepsafe Storage 30% discount on usual rate.

G Slater Properties 10% discount on stay at 5* Visit Scotl&, 2 bedroom flat at 25 Saxe Coburgh Place Edinburgh.

Knock Castle Special Members’ rate of £149 DB&B. Sunday to Thursday per room per night - £50 discount.

Something Special Flowers Free consultation with a Designer Florist at your place of business.

Macrae & Dick Car Sales – Free 1st service, mats & full tank of fuel on new/used vehicles. Service - £99 value service £129. Service & MOT & commercial servicing from £99. Rapid fit – Free puncture repair. Parts – up to 10% off accessories. Special business rates available.

Squirrel Self Store New customers’ 1st month storage for £1 plus 30% off subsequent monthly rates & everything in the Squirrel Shop.

Compass Business Services Ltd 10% off the labour cost of any IT work undertaken. Craigie Hill Golf Club Midweek Round: £15 (£7 discount). Weekend Round: £20 (also £7 discount). Crerar Scotlands Hotel & Leisure Club £45 per person bed & breakfast & 15% Discount on all Spa Treatments taken within the period of the offer. Crieff Hydro - Culcrieff Golf Club Offers on Golf Membership which includes further discounts inc: Stables, Hair & Beauty, Driving Range, Outdoor Activities, Shops & Restaurants.


Grainger Public Relations Free introductory meeting. 20% off a day’s rate for first PR project undertaken.

Perth Racecourse Introductory offer for members for 1st time booking. 10% discount on advertised hospitality packages on website.

Magnum Heating 20% off all Magnum Electric Underfloor Heating products. 10% off all giftware in the Enerfoil Magnum Showroom. Marshall’s Garden Machinery 10% discount off RRP for all garden equipment sales. 

Deans @ Lets Eat 10% discount on food bill.

McLeod the Glaziers 10% discount on all products & services.

DWK Office Solutions Free champagne with every successful Print Audit.

MiPerthshire Discounted joining rate of £100 (normal price £150)

Exchange Communications 20% discount on product & service purchase plus free consultation to business wishing to learn of new technologies.

New County Hotel & Opus One Restaurant 10% discount anytime, on food, meeting room hire, & on accommodation when booked direct.


Strathearn Pest Control 20% discount. STV Special rates on airtime & production costs & will happily offer any marketing or advertising advice as required. Symphony Hotels & Leisure Ltd 20% off annual Leisure Club membership & room hire for meetings at Best Western Queens Hotel, 10% off food at 1747 Restaurant at Lovat Hotel, £50.00 pppn DB&B special rate at the Craw’s Nest Hotel in Anstruther TheBestof Perth & Kinross 40% discount off standard set up fee for joining, subject to membership approval. Exchange Communications 20% discount on product & service purchase plus free consultation to business wishing to learn of new technologies.

Membership benefits


he Chamber is an independent, voluntary, non-profit making, non-political business organisation dedicated to the furtherance of members’ interests. It is the largest private sector business support organisation in Britain.

The Perthshire Chamber of Commerce has a voluntary Board of Directors from all over Perthshire and a wide range of business sectors. rship Membe fits e n e B

Perthshire Chamber has two paid full-time members of staff: Chief Executive, Vicki Unite, and Office Support & Events Co-ordinator Karen Wright, based at the Chamber’s office at the Algo Business Centre, Glenearn Road, Perth, PH2 0NJ. The Chamber can be contacted by telephone on 01738 450401 or by email: We are delighted to offer a new package of business services through our affiliation with British Chambers of Commerce (BCC). The new services are listed below and provide even more added value to being a member of Perthshire Chamber of Commerce.

Our memberships start at £136+ vat for businesses with 1- 5 employees. Offset that against the following business benefits: Chamber Legal Expenses & Legal Help Line Chamber HR Chamber Roadside Assistance Chamber Primary Health Plan Cash Plan Chamber Business Choice Healthcare Plan PMI Chamber Merchant Services

Chamber Connect Card

Worth a minimum of £125.00 for the smallest business member. Worth a minimum of £350.00 for the smallest business member. Up to 58% savings on like-for-like services from the AA. Available from as little as £1.10 per week. Up to 30% savings on various healthcare packages. 50% discount on Chamber fees for three years or 20% cash back in the first year! Waived joining fee for Chamber members (worth £150.00). 24% savings on terminal hire. Discounted transaction charges with more competitive rates than the FSB Discounted access to Executive UK Airport Lounges and International Lounges. Discounted access to Corporate Hospitality facilities across the UK. Access to discounted local hotels, restaurants and other services at participating Chambers.


Chamber Events

Export Documentation Services

Chamber Telecom

Chamber Fleet Assist

Chamber Money Zone

Events include: Regular lunch and early evening events, monthly networking breakfasts, free Business Lecture Series and an annual Golf Day. Plus many more including procurement and training events.

Chamber Travel Zone

Chamber Risk Insurance

Business Mentoring

Chamber Information Hotline

Preferential Rates for an Exclusive Training Programme

Member to Member Discounts

Chamber Voice Local & National Representation There are many avenues of communication and promotion available to our members including this quarterly InCommerce magazine, the Chamber Website, the Chamber Year Book and Appointments Diary and the Scottish Chambers of Commerce website and Directory.

Annual Dinner & Business Star Awards – Friday 23rd November 2012 This glittering evening celebrates Perthshire’s award winning businesses and takes place in November each year. Around 300 guests attend this black-tie event where the winners are announced and awards collected. Applications are available for any business registered in Perth & Kinross and this offers and excellent opportunity to promote and publicise your business and a fabulous evening to enjoy with like-minded business people. Look on our website for current winners and how to enter the next awards!

How much is Chamber membership worth now? Contact the Chamber office for further details on any of the above or refer to the website



HEADER2012 EVENTS BAR January Tuesday 10th

King James VI Business Centre


Dunkeld Hiton House Hotel


Tuesday 17th

Introduction to Social Networking & The 5pm - 8pm Facebook Masterclass Networking Breakfast at Tay Salmon 8.30am - 10am Season Launch Event The Twitter Masterclass 5pm - 8pm

King James VI Business Centre


Thursday 19th

Free Chamber Business Lecture

5.30pm - 7.30pm

Perth College UHI


Tuesday 24th

The Linked In Masterclass

5pm - 8pm

King James VI Business Centre


Thursday 26th

Evening Event - Cocktail Class & Supper 6pm - 8pm

The Bothy


Monday 30th

Board Meeting*

5.30pm - 7pm

King James VI Business Centre


Tuesday 31st

Taking your Social Media to the Next Level

5pm - 8pm

King James VI Business Centre


Tuesday 7th

Networking Breakfast

7.30am - 8.45am

New County Hotel


Thursday 16th

Free Chamber Business Lecture

5.30pm - 7.30pm

Perth College UHI


Tuesday 21st

Speaker Lunch

McDiarmid Park


Monday 27th

Board Meeting*

12 noon for 12.30pm 2pm 5.30pm - 7pm

Algo Business Centre


Tuesday 6th

Networking Breakfast

7.30am - 8.45am

The Green Hotel


Thursday 15th

Free Chamber Business Lecture

5.30pm - 7.30pm

Perth College UHI


Tuesday 20th

Speaker Lunch

12 noon - 2pm



Monday 28th

Board Meeting*

5.30pm - 7pm

Algo Business Centre


Thursday 29th

Evening Event

6pm - 8pm

Gillies & Mackay/Cairn O’Mohr Winery


Monday 16th



DATE FOR DIARY Friday 23rd Dec

Annual Dinner & Business Star Awards

* These meetings are closed, however, if you wish to have something raised or discussed, please just contact the Chamber office.

Social Winter Camp




Taking place over four Tuesday evenings in January your business will benefit from the following: Introduction to Social Networking & The Facebook Masterclass: Suitable for both beginners right up to more experienced users, this course will introduce you to the best way to set up your business on Facebook, maximse the use of Facebook Pages, Facebook Places, develop your fan base and manage communications using the world’s biggest social network The Twitter Masterclass: Starting from the basis of setting up your account, right through to building followers, using automated tools to plan and deliver online marketing campaigns, integrating Twitter streams within your existing online media and connecting up Facebook to Twitter.

The LinkedIn Masterclass: The grand-daddy of social networks, LinkedIn has been around a long time but is enjoying a resurgence in recent years. Learn how to get the best out of this professional network and to maximize connections with other social networks, as well as manage expectations. Taking your Social Media to the Next Level: Setting up social media channels is just the beginning. Learn how to make use of the channels to drive sales, engage with customers, develop staff and grow your business.

Prices Full Winter Camp: Chamber Members £130 + VAT; Non Chamber Members £185 + VAT Individual Sessions: Chamber Members £45 + VAT, Non Chamber Members £55 + VAT

Dates & Times Tuesday: 10th, 17th, 24th, 31st January 5pm – 8pm King James VI Business Centre, Perth

Booking for all events and further information at: or by calling: 01738 450401 or by emailing:



Monday Morning

Cullen Place Sheltered Housing Complete Beginner/Beginners

Monday Evening

Downfield F Club -

A LOW IMPACT AEROBIC & CARDIOVASCULAR WORKOUT What is Nuline? Nuline teaches dance routines to all genres of music: Latin, Pop, Waltz, Rumba, Jazz, Celtic & Country. It’s a great way to learn how to dance and is suitable for all ages, no partner required. Fully Qualified Dance Teacher (BWDA & BSDA) available for all Clubs & Organisations who wish to try Nuline. Classes available in the Dundee are for Beginners, Improvers, Intermediate Dancers. Come along and join in the fun.

The new Craze of 2011 GET ONE FREE CLASS TO TRY NULINE Contact Karen: or 07952395718

Don’t Miss Out -TRY

Beginners 6.30pm-7.30pm, Improvers/Intermediate 7.45pm-9.15pm

Tuesday Afternoon

Balcarres Sheltered Housing Complete Beginners/Beginners

Tuesday Night

Douglas Boys Club Beginners/Improvers

Wednesday Afternoon

Morvan Sheltered Housing Improvers/Intermediate

Thursday Night

Tullideph Sheltered Housing Complete Beginners

Friday Afternoon

Patons Lane Sheltered Housing Complete Beginners

Perthshire InCommerce  

The Perthshire Chamber of Commerce Business Magazine, Issue 12 Winter 2011

Perthshire InCommerce  

The Perthshire Chamber of Commerce Business Magazine, Issue 12 Winter 2011