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Lift Off! ...communicating with business

August/September 2013 - Issue 8

MIF casts a spell over the city... In this issue... No trouble at The Mill… City to build new homes… Hospital school 'outstanding'… Duo celebrates 25 years…

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BW3 mentors – changing young people’s lives Businesses Working With Wythenshawe (BW3), are again offering free mentoring training; playing a vital role in enabling young people to become independent, motivated adults. BW3-trained mentors will work with students aged 14-16 years, on a one-to-one basis, in school years 10 and 11. The purpose of aspirational mentoring, is to help students recognise and develop their own strengths and skills by talking with adults who bring along wider experiences and perspectives. The mentors usually work on a two-to-one basis, meeting with the young person in school for about thirty minutes every two to three weeks, during school hours - in term time only. The young people may be experiencing low aspirations, are underachieving, or they may have attendance problems and the mentor is on-hand to advise, guide, support, encourage and challenge the young person. Fact: ● ●

Mentors help improve a young person's self esteem Mentors help young people set career goals and shows them how they can be achieved Around 40% of a teenager's waking hours are spent without companionship or supervision Mentors teach young people how to relate to all kinds of people, strengthen communications skills and cope with difficult situations Mentored young people have better attendance, more positive attitudes towards school and a better chance of going on to higher education Mentoring helps reduce negative behaviour, helps prevent substance abuse and promotes positive social attitudes and relationships

Young people who meet regularly with their mentor are less likely to miss a day of schooling and less likely to use illegal drugs or drink

Mentoring a young person is both challenging and rewarding, with the benefits lasting each participant a lifetime. Tony Hampson, Sixth Form Pastoral Manager, Manchester Enterprise Academy (MEA), said: “The mentors provided by BW3 for the benefit of MEA Sixth Form students this year, have had a dramatic and profound impact on the lives of our young people. “Many students lack the fundamental life skills, focus and experience to deal with everyday situations. And as a result, are often held back in this increasing competitive world they find themselves in. Without the support, guidance, professionalism and commitment shown from such excellent mentors, the students would still be at a disadvantage at this very important stage in their careers. “I can only state that the changes to students receiving this support from BW3, has simply been “life changing” for them. This is not an exaggeration, I can assure everyone of this and I see, daily, the vast improvements made by the students, who have fully embraced the opportunities that have come their way. “Whether this has been through mock interviews and techniques, work experience, help with their studies, conversations regarding future pathways into University or employment - for some students for the first time - and both parties have learnt a lot from each other and thoroughly enjoyed the experience.

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“We wish to keep the brilliant relationship with BW3 and its mentors going for years to come, and here are just a few quotes from students who have been mentored: “I wasn’t too sure if I wanted to do it at first, because I am a bit shy, but I am really glad I did and it’s gone brilliantly well. I am now not the same person I was, and my thoughts have turned to going to University after I finish next year.” “It’s not easy to talk to someone you have never met before but he made me feel very welcome and didn’t judge me. I’ve learnt so much about the skills I need to develop, so I can get a job at Manchester Airport when I leave.”

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“For me it’s been the work experience that has made me really think about my next step in life”.

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“This year has been my best at MEA Sixth Form and the mentoring has really built my self-esteem up - I now feel just as good as anyone in here.”

Lift-Off Publications Ltd Suite 2, South Court, Sharston Road, Manchester M22 4SN Lift-Off! is an independent bi-monthly business magazine published by Lift-Off Publications Limited. No part of this publication may be reproduced or used in any form without the expressed permission of the editor. The publication of advertisements does not imply any endorsement. The publisher cannot be held responsible for breach of copyright arising from artwork supplied. It is the advertiser's responsibility to ensure conformity with the Trades Description Act 1975. Business Advertisements Disclosure Act 1977 and the Consumer Credit Act 1974. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is strictly prohibited. Whilst the publisher takes great care to be accurate, no liability will be accepted under any circumstances should any of the content of this publication be incorrect. Articles supplied, if accepted, may be edited and shortened at the Editor's discretion and may be used on the Lift-Off! magazine website.


“My mentor has become someone I rely upon. And when I asked her why she does this without getting paid, she said because I was worth it. When I am older, I will do mentoring for someone at college to repay the faith shown in me.” “We cannot thank the BW3 mentors enough,’ said Tony. “The students appreciate the time the mentors spend with them - and the difference mentoring makes to their lives is remarkable.” If you feel you have the time, and are interested in making a difference to young people's lives, contact Bob Bell, BW3 Co-ordinator Visit the website –

Passenger numbers continue to rise at Manchester Airport Manchester Airport saw 2.1m passengers use the airport during June 2013, according to latest figures. This was a rise of 4.1% when compared to June 2012, and marks a 13th consecutive month of year on year growth for the gateway to the North. Figures released in July by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), also show that Manchester Airport was above the UK airport average of passenger growth in June. The UK airport average growth was 3.2%. The statistics showed international scheduled flight traffic to be up by 9.4%. New services such as EgyptAir’s service to Cairo launched in June; while TAP Portugal announced an increase of weekly flights to Lisbon, taking them from seven a week to ten. The new route to Cairo allowed Egytpair to expand its network with the start of a five times per week service between Manchester and the Egyptian capital. Cairo is the northern gateway to Africa and passengers have convenient onward access to more than 18 African destinations. An on-going focus on the low cost sector has also gone some way towards Manchester’s success as the third stage of the airport’s ‘Fly Manchester’ campaign

launched in June, continuing to raise awareness of Manchester Airport as home to the most low cost flights in the North. Airlines such as easyJet, Ryanair, Monarch,, Germanwings and Norwegian, continue to grow from Manchester. Ken O’Toole, Chief Commercial Officer for MAG, owners of Manchester Airport, said: “We’ve seen over a year of continued month-on-month growth now and the next few months will provide an additional boost as over 14m passengers are expected to use Manchester Airport during the summer. “We’re entering the full swing of the summer season and are expecting a further surge in passengers once the schools break up as millions of people fly away for a well-deserved break.” The passenger performance continues a recent positive trend and Virgin Atlantic also announced, during June, that they would be offering 30,000 extra return

seats to Orlando from Manchester Airport in summer 2014. Virgin Atlantic will fly daily from Manchester Airport and twice a day on Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. The top five foreign destinations for this summer are currently: Palma, Amsterdam, Dubai, Alicante and Tenerife with August 23rd anticipated to be the busiest day of the summer this year. Passenger figures show that 84,000 passengers are expected to travel through Manchester Airport on Friday August 23rd. The same day last year peaked at 80,000 passengers travelling through the airport. Manchester Airport is part of MAG, the UK’s second largest airport operator, serving 42m passengers every year through its ownership and operation of Manchester, London Stansted, East Midlands and Bournemouth airports.

FSB: Businesses should be responsible for apprenticeships funding The Government’s recent announcement that it will consult businesses on drawing down apprenticeship funding directly, has prompted the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), to urge caution and ensure any changes will result in long-term benefits, while minimalising bureaucracy and costs. John Allan, the FSB National Chairman, said: “The FSB agrees with the principle that employers should draw down the Government funding for Apprenticeships rather than the providers. “This should create a more demand-led system and make providers more responsive to business need. However, getting any change to do with funding, or wider issues around Apprenticeships right, is crucial. The current system has been subjected to constant change undermining the brand and leading to confusion. We strongly urge Government to take its time with any reforms so that they get it right first time to create a system that will last for decades to come.

“The FSB looks forward to taking part in this consultation and considering which system would work best for small firms. The system must not require complicated John Alan - National Chairman administration, a significant increase in costs for small businesses, large upfront payments before funding is recovered, or penalise employers if the Apprenticeship ends early.”


Under-fire banks give the most to charity New research reveals that despite the financial crisis, rate-rigging and tax-avoidance scandals… ...the financial sector gives far more to charity than any other industry sector. Findings revealed in the first ever Company Giving Almanac, published this month by the charity Directory of Social Change, show the UK financial sector provides the lion’s share of money given by companies to UK charities and voluntary groups. The Almanac analyses a sample of over 400 companies which support UK charitable causes. The report provides the most comprehensive picture of company giving to charitable causes in the UK to date.

Several high-profile banking names are examined in the report, including Goldman Sachs and the part-publicly owned Lloyds Banking Group, which itself provides 25% of all the giving from the financial services sector.

Despite the recent economic upheaval, the financial sector still dominates the top UK corporate giving figures, both in terms of cash (£245m) and total support, including in-kind (£319m). The total provided by all companies in the UK is estimated to be between £700 – £800m. For those companies analysed in the Almanac, total contributions as a proportion of company pre-tax profits stand at around 0.4% overall (including ‘in-kind’ contributions) with cash at 0.3%. This is well below the 1% standard advocated by many as a benchmark. However the financial sector performs better than other industries, giving 0.7% of pre-tax profits.

Report author, Dr Catherine Walker, said: “The fallout from the financial crash continues, with more scandals shredding the reputation and integrity of the financial sector. “Ironically, these same institutions give more to charity than corporate counterparts in other industries. Clearly bankers and financiers need not just to re-establish moral values within their business culture but to shout about it too. They could give more to social causes, but other businesses sectors should look at the example set by the banks and financial institutions in terms of charitable giving and take note.”

Need to make changes to your VAT record? Changes to VAT registration details can now be made more easily online; online improvements for tax agents registering groups for VAT. Did you know that you can now make changes to your online VAT registration details more easily? HMRC has seen an increase in the number of businesses using our online tax registration service, with around four out of five new businesses currently using it to register for VAT. Virtually all businesses must submit their VAT returns online and make payments electronically, so it makes sense for you to get online from the start and register your business for VAT using the HMRC website. When you register for VAT using the HMRC online tax registration service, you will be automatically signed up to use the HMRC VAT Online filing service. Recent improvements to our services mean that you will also be automatically signed up to allow you to notify changes to some of your VAT registration details online (for example, change of business name, change of business address). If existing VAT Online customers enrol for this service they will no longer be required to use an Activation Code to activate it. As well as improving the online service sign up process for businesses, HMRC has also improved the online service for agents when registering a group for VAT. Agents are now able to provide all the necessary documentation during the online process. This is something agents have been asking for to improve the current registration service for them and their clients. Find out more about this service and other VAT information.


Manchester unveils revised ‘Superconnected Cities’ plans

Manchester has unveiled revised plans to support its drive to become a ‘superconnected city. 'Manchester City Council has been awarded up to £10.74m, subject to meeting agreed conditions, under the government's Urban Broadband Fund, to spread the advantages of ultrafast broadband and digital inclusion and to support economic growth and job creation. Initiatives which will be funded and delivered before Spring 2015, include: Business connectivity voucher scheme (up to £3.65m) More than 2,000 Manchester businesses are expected to benefit from a scheme providing support to fund preliminary works enabling ultrafast broadband to be installed. The business voucher scheme will remove construction costs in order to improve business take up of faster connectivity, so the use of services like 'cloud' based ICT solutions and video streaming products that could help drive efficiency, open up new markets and ultimate help economic growth. The voucher would support small and medium sized businesses (fewer than 250 employees with a turnover of no more than £37m). Wi-Fi in public buildings (up to £2.7m) Enabling more than 130 public buildings, including: libraries, leisure centres, adult education spaces and other cultural and community facilities to offer free Wi-Fi in a significant expansion of the city's Freebee network. Being connected brings social and economic benefits and can enable access to jobs, skills and services. Wi-Fi on public transport (up to £440,000) Extending access to free Wi-Fi via the FreebeeMcr network to Metrolink trams and Metroshuttles as part of a wider package of funding. Manchester Science Park Smart and Connected initiative (up to £2.95m) Creating ultrafast connectivity in a demonstrator project to encourage research and development activities and prove to businesses the potential value of high speed performance – helping to

stimulate further demand. Businesses in the science and digital technology sectors are at the forefront of the UK's growth and this investment will help ensure Manchester's growth potential is realised. The funding will allow testing and adoption of leading edge innovation and collaboration tools which require significant capacity, quality and resilience.

it is slightly disappointing that revised rules mean we can't realise the full ambition of our original plans, this is still very good news for Manchester.

Airport City Enterprise Zone ducting (up to £500,000*) Funding the incorporation of ducting – enabling new roads to accommodate high speed broadband infrastructure – into Manchester Airport City Enterprise Zone.

“We aim to be one of the world's top digital cities by 2020, and this package will make a real and lasting contribution.”

(*subject to confirmation that this conforms with state aid rules) Additional Funding Additional funding is being discussed with the Department of Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), that could bring further investment to Manchester. Manchester, and 22 other cities, had originally been awarded money to improve digital infrastructure across the city under the Government's Urban Broadband Fund last year. The bulk of the money was to have been used to increase the availability of ultrafast broadband to businesses across the city. But, in common with other cities that had been awarded funding, the Council was asked by the DCMS to go back to the drawing board because of concerns that schemes would fall foul of strict European state aid regulations. EU rules state that state funding cannot be used to provide infrastructure in urban areas where it is deemed that commercial roll-out would be theoretically viable.

“These measures will help improve high speed internet access for businesses, and for residents, through significant increased access to WiFi in public buildings and on public transport across the city.

Councillor Andrew Fender, Chair of the Transport for Greater Manchester Committee, said: “We want to improve the public transport experience for our customers and providing Wi-Fi access is a key part of that. “This is great news for Metrolink and Metroshuttle passengers, who will be able to make even better use of their travel time by using the internet for free. We will be trialling free Wi-Fi on a Metrolink tram soon, and with this funding, we look forward to rolling the service out right across the tram network. “Key city centre transport hubs will be connected to the Freebee network in the coming months and it's great news that we'll be able to extend free WiFi to the city's popular, free, Metroshuttle service too.” Manchester Science Park Chief Executive, Rowena Burns, said: “Ultrafast connectivity is massively important to innovation and growth. “Creating a robust test bed for businesses to trial new technologies and services will assist the creation of new business models and drive further investment.”

Councillor Nigel Murphy, Executive Member for Environment, said: “Although


Aeroflot signs with Manchester United Manchester United has announced a five-year partnership with Aeroflot. The Moscow-based international airline will become the club’s Official Carrier. This partnership marks the club’s first commercial venture in Russia - an expanding market it is keen to explore further and where it has close to 18m followers. Announced at a ceremony at United’s Old Trafford stadium, Aeroflot’s CEO Vitaly Saveliev and Manchester United’s Group Managing Director, Richard Arnold, were joined by team manager, David Moyes and the first team squad to celebrate the partnership. Founded in 1923, Aeroflot is Russia’s leading airline, having recently won ‘Best Airline in Eastern Europe’ at the SKYTRAX World Airline Awards. Its latest accolades include the ‘Most Stylish Airline’ award by Skyscanner as well as Russia’s ‘Company of the Year 2012’. As the Official Carrier of Manchester United, Aeroflot will provide the English Premier League champions with strategic advice on travel for the team and club representatives. Aeroflot has 137 planes and one of the youngest fleets in Europe, with an average age of five to six years and in 2012, the Group provided an outstanding travel experience to its 27.5m

passengers. Each of its luxury aircraft features comfortable seating as well as award-winning on-board menus designed by Michelin-starred chefs. As a member of SkyTeam global airline alliance, Aeroflot and its partners provide services to more than 1000 destinations in 178 countries and offer the shortest route between Europe and Asia, via Moscow. Richard Arnold, Manchester United Group Managing Director, said: “Manchester United and Aeroflot share several core values and we are pleased to be welcoming such a high quality company as a sponsor. Like the club, Aeroflot demonstrates team-work, quality and a pride in its heritage, whilst still embracing new technologies and innovation. Aeroflot is celebrating its 90th birthday this year, but has already impressed us with its youthful energy. “We look forward to developing a meaningful partnership with them and reaching our fans in innovative and rewarding ways.”

Katharine Mellor joins Slater Heelis as partner Katharine Mellor, a former Corporate Partner in DWF LLP and one of the region's most respected legal figures, has joined Manchester law firm Slater Heelis LLP as a Partner. Katharine has more than 30 years’ experience advising on corporate governance and public/private partnerships with particular reference to the health care sector. She also is involved in the setting up of charities and advising charity trustees. Specialising in mergers and acquisitions, management buy-outs and joint ventures, Katharine was the first female President of the Manchester Law Society and has held Non-Executive Director positions with the National Blood Authority and South Manchester University NHS Hospital Trust. Mike Fox, Managing Partner at Slater Heelis LLP, said: “I feel both proud and fortunate that Katharine has chosen to join us. “Katharine is dedicated to providing a service to her clients that is second to none, which fits entirely with the philosophy of Slater Heelis. We are committed to ensuring that our clients have the best available in the marketplace to support them, whatever their legal requirements.” With origins dating back to 1773, Slater Heelis LLP now employs in excess of 70 people, and works with a diverse client base that ranges from sports personalities and entrepreneurs, to national PLC's, local government and not-for profit organisations. 6

Media recycling site Zumu sees monthly trades top 100,000 following UK launch North West media recycling website brand Zumu, is celebrating a phenomenal introduction to the UK market after recording an average of more than 100,000 monthly trades just 12 weeks after its launch. average of 100,000 in June - which shows no signs of slowing. “After nine months of trading, our Detroit-based warehouse in the US is seeing in excess of 50,000 items a day being processed, together with almost 40,000 downloads of the Zumu trading app. We believe the UK operation can consistently match that. “The average number of items traded by each user per trade is now 45 items, so we have really been taken aback by the speed of the growth, which I believes only goes to prove that the concept is highly attractive in the current climate.” Zumu releases the cash that is already in the home – with CDs people no longer listen to, DVDs they no longer watch or video games they no longer play - and have created a website model that is simple and easy to use. A year after the CD, DVD and video game recycling business’ sister site ZUMU US was launched in America, UK consumers’ positive response to the UK service has exceeded the expectations of founder, Neil Ouzman. Following its high-profile UK launch in April, utilising significant marketing spend that included a national TV ad campaign, Zumu has established itself as an industry-leading model. Operating out of a 55,000 sq ft processing facility in Leyland, Lancashire, with a tech, finance, marketing and customer service team based at its head office base in Congleton, Cheshire; the company now employs more than 30 people. Neil Ouzman, said: “The number of monthly trades has certainly seen significant early growth rising from over 80,000 in May, to an

Customers first determine the value of their used item by entering the unique barcode number from each CD, DVD or video game into the site - or scan the bar code on the phone app. They then receive an estimate of the item's value. On confirming that they want to proceed, the customer decides whether they would like Zumu to send them a cheque, or donate the value to charity. All they then have to do is print their free postage label, pop the items in a cardboard box, and post to Zumu’s UK handling centre in Lancashire. Zumu then recycles pre-loved DVDs, CDs and video games by finding a new home for them. Items that can’t be re-homed, are then recycled into something else and Zumu pledges to recycle 100% of the items they receive. For more information on Zumu visit

Shaping Cloud assist Cottons’ expansion Leading Manchester independent financial advisers, Cottons, have appointed Shaping Cloud to develop their client facing software solutions. recently secured a place on the Government’s G-Cloud framework. The number of staff at Cottons has more than tripled in the past six months, and as the company continues to grow, it feels secure that these solutions will grow with it. Mark Albinson, Director at Cottons Financial Planning Group Ltd said: “When advising clients on their financial requirements, it is necessary to have facts and figures available at your fingertips.

The rapidly-growing cloud consultancy has already implemented a move to Office 365, which will allow staff to work remotely and has developed a unique internal system to track and boost productivity. Shaping Cloud has taken on a number of ambitious clients in the last quarter, having

“Working with Shaping Cloud, and developing the solution with Office 365, has enabled Cottons advisors to provide bespoke solutions to clients, and to meet all of their needs.

and work together to enable growth in the North West.” Shaping Cloud Managing Director, Carlos Oliveira, said: “As one of our first clients, it’s great to see the growth of Cottons, knowing that our systems have played an integral part. There are a number of businesses in Manchester with the potential to replicate the success of Cottons, and we believe that with the right spirit and support, local partnerships can flourish.”

This solution allows us to meet a client, wherever and whenever it suits them, which is fantastic for productivity. It is important that local businesses in Manchester support


Manchester Airport celebrates 75 years of operation

Manchester Airport, the gateway to the North of England, has celebrated its 75th anniversary.

On Saturday June 25th 1938, the airport was officially opened by an air display from the Royal Air Force by the command of Sir Kingsley Wood, his Majesty’s Secretary of State for Air. Operations began two days later and in the first 14 months, the airport handled 7,600 passengers, which is the equivalent of a Summer morning's work today. Manchester was the first city in Great Britain to establish a municipal aerodrome when an Air Ministry licence was granted to the Corporation on April 22nd 1929. In January, 1934, an airline senior pilot claimed that the existing Barton site for Manchester was unsuitable, and by July, 1934, the City Council had chosen Ringway as a new home. A Public Inquiry was held in October and the Government approved the site in February 1935. The first service was by KLM and flew to Blackpool, Speke, Ringway - via a request stop to Doncaster - and finally Amsterdam. The original 1938 route network included the exotic hotspots of Western Super-Mare, Croydon and Doncaster, whereas Manchester now serves close to 200 international destinations worldwide. The early airlines of Great Western and Southern and Railway Air Services have been replaced by the likes of Emirates, American, Etihad, Singapore, Qatar, United and Delta on the departure boards. Andrew Cowan, Chief Operating Officer for M.A.G, owners of Manchester Airport, said: “This is a significant milestone in our history as we reach our 75th anniversary. “I hope that this was the vision that the city forefathers had for the project when they first decided to open an airport here. It’s even more significant for us this year, as we’ve completed a transformational


increase in the size of the company, having added London Stansted to our group of airports.

Manchester. A road at the airport’s Runway Visitor Park is named in his honour.

“This Summer, Manchester has surpassed 20m passengers again, and we are the third largest airport in the UK, while the company is responsible for 42m passengers as a group of airports and we will begin to build our Airport City development this year, further cementing Manchester’s reputation as a European business destination. We’ve achieved much in our opening 75 years of existence and we’re well placed for an even brighter future.”

A number of short-lived aerodromes existed around Manchester in order to handle increasing air traffic, and in 1919, Britain's first scheduled air service began from a private airfield in Manchester to Birkdale Sands in Southport and on to South Shore, Blackpool. In 1926, the city fathers realised that unless Manchester had a permanent airport, the city could suffer and, as a result of their efforts, the first Manchester Airport was built, of which today’s airport is the direct descendent.

The Secretary of State officially opened the airport at 12.30pm before the air display from RAF aircraft. The public were invited to ‘joy-ride’ on selected flights between 6.15pm and 10pm. Aircraft such as a De Havilland Express, a Mongoose Avro and a Fox Moth were stationed adjacent to a public enclosure where passengers could experience flights for 5 shillings per person. The Lord Mayor of Manchester in 1938, was Alderman Joseph Crookes Grime, and on the day of the air display, he quoted in his notes from a publication called ‘Invitation to Industry’ from the Manchester Development Committee. He said in those notes: “In transport, in finance, in industry and public services, the city stands out as a world centre, economically equipped for the needs of today and tomorrow. No field for enterprise can offer more than Manchester can offer.” The airport’s history stretches back even further than 1938, as Manchester was already a hotbed of air activity. In 1910 Louis Paulhan landed a Farman biplane in a field near Burnage and claimed a £10,000 prize offered by the Daily Mail for the first person to fly from London to

During World War 2, the airport became a hub of wartime engineering activity as an aircraft manufacturing centre for Fairey Aviation and Avro. Runway and airport facilities were enhanced with three new runways - with ten new hangars being added during this period. The airport also acted as a training centre for over 60,000 parachutists. Now, 75 years on, the airport is the thirdlargest in the UK and recently passed the 20m passenger mark, again, having reached a peak of 22m in 2007. In 1954, the airport served a million passengers and by 1995, that had risen to 15m. The airport now has three terminals and two runways and will this year begin construction on the UK’s first Airport City project. Manchester Airport is part of M.A.G and serves nearly 42m passengers through its ownership and operation of Manchester, London Stansted, East Midlands and Bournemouth airports. Its property and facilities management arm, M.A.G Property, is responsible for the Group’s £500m estate and the development of Manchester’s Airport City.

Business Growth Hub reveals three new business support teams Growth, Mentoring, and Growth Start-up Teams now in place. The Greater Manchester Business Growth Hub has completed the first phase of a major recruitment programme and now has three new teams in place that will deliver specific programmes as part of the City Deal contract with Government. The new teams will be delivering key services including mentoring, growth advice and planning for growing businesses and growth start-up support for new enterprise with growth potential. Mike Carrighan, the new Senior Business Growth Manager, has been brought in to manage the Hub’s central Business Growth team that will include eight highly experienced Growth Advisors. Mike is a Business Growth Professional with more than 17-years’ management experience across a range of different sectors comprising Marketing, Management Consultancy and Corporate Banking, working with Government Departments and Business Support Agencies. Mike joins the Hub from business growth consultancy Prime Independent Ltd, following comprehensive experience working across other Growth & High Growth programmes. The new mentoring team is led by Paul Tucker, formerly of the National Centre for Entrepreneurship in Education, where he supported in excess of 400 mentees in setting up their own businesses. Paul has also worked as a business advisor and expert for the National Centre for Blue Orchid, Manchester Metropolitan University and the Manchester Business Consortium. The team of six will recruit additional business mentors, match these with the Hub’s clients, and proactively manage the relationship offering ongoing business support.

Janine Smith heads up the six strong Growth Start-up team as Manager, and brings with her many years’ expertise in managing multi-million pound successful contracts and programmes, both in the public and private sectors in the business support, workforce development and education sectors. Formerly Director of Enterprise and Skills at Orvia Group, an Enterprise Agency, Janine has managed numerous Start Up contracts including the NWDA and ERDF funded Intensive Start-up Support programme, the Lancashire-wide £3m ERDF Start Up Lancashire contract, Barclays Ready for Business and various local authority initiatives. Richard Jeffery, Director of the Business Growth Hub, said: “These new teams are a major addition to our resources and to the support we can offer to growing businesses. The accumulated experience, expertise and business know-how they bring to the Hub will be crucial to us driving business growth in Manchester and supporting entrepreneurs and businesses at every stage of their development.” The ERDF, is a fund allocated by the European Union that finances convergence, regional competitiveness and employment and territorial co-operation. The Business Growth Hub, and its partners, currently deliver products and services that include the Manufacturing Advisory Service, UKTI, Access to Finance, UK Start-Up Loans, NW Business Angels, Manchester Business Loans, ENWORKS, and mentoring programmes plus a range of networking and specialist growth events. 9

Manchester Airport’s new control tower completed The new £20m air traffic control tower at Manchester Airport is now fully operational with the official opening ceremony having taken place on the 75th anniversary to mark the historic opening of Manchester Airport. The tower stands a proud 60 metres high, making it the second tallest air traffic control tower in the UK. Manchester Airport announced plans to build the new control tower in February 2011, and construction began shortly afterwards. The existing control tower at the airport has been operational since 1962 and will now be decommissioned. Construction began in March 2012, with final works ending in June 2013. NATS, the UK’s leading air traffic control company, has installed the latest technology in the tower to enable controllers to continue to provide a safe and efficient service for the 170,000 aircraft movements at the airport this year. NATS staff have been undergoing a three-month training programme to familiarise themselves with operations in the new tower ahead of the transition. The control tower is now the second largest in the UK - with Heathrow’s tower being the tallest – and during construction, it took just nine days to complete the 60 metre shaft that would be the centrepiece of the edifice. The construction teams, led by contractor Morgan Sindall, poured concrete continuously for 222 hours – from the morning of Tuesday 13th March 2012 to the early evening of Thursday 22nd March - at an average rate of 27cm an hour. This method of pouring concrete into a continuously moving form is known as ‘slipform’ and is the same construction technique that was used to construct the famous CN Tower in Toronto. Approximately 600 cubic metres of concrete and 65 tons of steel reinforcement were cast to form the nine-metre wide shaft. The new tower has 360-degree panoramic views around Greater Manchester and into Cheshire, providing a much-improved structure than the existing tower. It will also house some of the most modern equipment on the market with more than 70 different systems having been installed into the tower, including radar processors, plasma touch displays, electronic flight progress strips (EFPS) and communications equipment. Andrew Cowan, Chief Operating Officer for Manchester Airport Groups (M.A.G), owners of Manchester Airport, said: “We are delighted with the new control tower and pleased that it officially opens as we celebrate our 75th year of operation. It’s a fitting moment for us and demonstrates our


continued investment in Manchester Airport, and this will be our most significant development in the airport this year. It also follows previous investments made such as the £10m upgrade for the airfield in 2010 so we could prepare for the arrival of the Emirates A380 and the complete refurbishment of runway one, in 2011. “The new tower provides facilities suitable for a 21st century airfield and has further strengthened our great relationship with NATS, with whom we have worked together to create an iconic building, in a secure unit next to the airfield.” The new control tower houses an approach radar and navigation section, surveillance and communications equipment, while the base of the building houses new offices and an equipment centre. The control tower provides unrivalled views of the entire airfield operation from its new location. From its previous position on the top of an office above Terminal 1, cameras were needed by controllers to assist with the views to the furthest end of Runway 2. NATS Manchester General Manager, Paul Jones, said: “The transition to full operations from the new Manchester tower later this week will be the culmination of a long project to enhance still further the service we are able to provide to Manchester Airport, the airlines and the thousands of people that fly into and out of this airport every year. “We are really excited to be moving into our new home which, with its height and position on the airfield, together with the technology at our disposal, will enable us to provide the very best service for the airport and its passengers.” NATS will manage the equipment and run the tower’s 24-hour operation, while Manchester Airport will own and maintain the building. Manchester Airport is the global gateway for the North of the UK and the largest airport outside London with more than 200 destinations served by 65 airlines. For more information, please visit:

UK Car Discount wheels out new website UK Car Discount (UKCD), one of the UK’s leading discount online new car retailers, is celebrating the launch of their latest dedicated vehicle leasing website, which is now live. The new site allows users to browse or search for the best car and van leasing deals in UK. Customers looking to lease a car, for business or personal use, will find deals conveniently located in dedicated business and personal sections of the website - as will those searching for commercial vehicles and vans. For users who like a little more control, the website features a cutting-edge ‘Power Search’, which allows browsers to customise their preferred contract with the help of sliders. Utilising this, they can select their maximum budget per month and preferred repayment term to find deals tailored to their needs, they can also select their preferred initial payment (3, 6 or 9 months).

marketplace complemented by a first class, friendly service. “Our new leasing website enables us to further extend the services we can deliver to our customers, with some of the best car and van leasing deals available in the UK. It also offers userfriendly tools to enable customers to easily find their best-suited leasing deal.”

The ‘Power Search’ also encourages customers to search for leasing deals by a number of vehicle criteria, all in one go. For example: personal or business lease, car or van, fuel, transmission, vehicle type (e.g. 4x4, estate, hatchback etc) and whether the vehicle is in stock for immediate delivery. UK Car Discount is one of the UK’s largest online discount new car dealers. Established in 2003, they have sold close to £100m worth of brand new vehicles. Gary Bennett, Managing Director UKCD, said: “Our aim has always been to deliver the cheapest new car deals in the



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Manchester says thank you with Armed Forces Day To mark Armed Forces Day, the Lord Mayor of Manchester, Councillor Naeem Hassan, was joined by the Lord Lieutenant of Greater Manchester, Warren Smith, to witness the raising of the Armed Forces flag from Manchester Town Hall. The flag was flown all week in the run up to Armed Forces Day, on Saturday 29 June, when Manchester thanked all members of the armed forces, past and present in Piccadilly Gardens. Piccadilly Gardens was filled with live music, family-friendly activities and food stalls, with the area transformed into a picnic area, allowed members of the public to relax and enjoy the day in the sunshine. There was also a Veterans' Static Parade of Standards, followed by music throughout the afternoon, including a performance from the Lancashire Artillery Volunteers Band. Other activities included a chance to try out a RAF flight simulator, an army climbing tower and the opportunity to take in a military display of vehicles. Manchester Starflyer, an exhilarating white knuckle ride, was also running - offering a unique aerial view of Piccadilly Gardens and beyond. Piccadilly Gardens also hosted a picnic-style seating area with an array of food and drink available from the street food market.

Lord Mayor of Manchester Councillor Naeem Hassan said: “Armed Forces Day is a chance for us all to show our appreciation to the service men and women that have served their country along with those that continue to do so.”

Greater Manchester transport policing praised nationally A passenger safety scheme carried out by Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM), Greater Manchester Police (GMP), Stagecoach Manchester, First Manchester and the Metrolink operator MRDL has won national praise. The Greater Manchester Travel Safe Scheme (GMTSS) was presented with a “highly commendable” certificate as part of the Home Office’s Lord Ferrers Awards. The GMTSS, which started in 2009, has resulted in regular policing patrols on Greater Manchester buses and trams and at stations including surveillance operations. The certificate was given to GMTSS members at the House of Commons by Chief Constable David Whatton, of Cheshire Police, after the group was nominated in the ‘Employer Supported Policing’ category. The Lord Ferrers Awards is an annual awards ceremony, named after the late Home Office minister, which recognises the role of policing volunteers in the line of duty. Twelve police volunteers – known as ‘special constables’ – make up the GMTSS which is led and organised by Phil Harrison, TfGM Crime Reduction Partnership Co-ordinator, and GMP Constable Stuart Graham. Phil said: “GMTSS is public sector 12

some circumstances, to ASBOs and criminal prosecutions. Chief Superintendent Nick Adderley, GMP Strategic Lead for the Special Constabulary, said: “Our Special Constables make a very valuable contribution to our communities every single day and this is another great example of the work that they do to keep people safe. partnership working at its best and the special constables involved are really the cream of the crop. “We just missed out on scooping the Employer Supported Policing, which recognises successful multi-agency partnerships with special constables, so this was a nice consolation prize. “It was a very proud day for all of us who attended the House of Commons ceremony to see the scheme and volunteers presented with this commendation.” The work of the GMTSS has resulted in the confiscation of drugs, weapons and other harmful contraband leading, in

“Working alongside partners, Specials have given up their free time to successfully reduce crime and disorder on the transport system and I'm thrilled that their efforts have been recognised with this award.” Michael Renshaw, TfGM’s Bus and Rail Director, added: “Everyone involved in the GMTSS has done a superb job over the past four years. “They are committed to tackling crime and anti-social behaviour on our public transport network and this commendation recognises the importance of their work.”

Robinsons Trooper – one million pints sold in first eight weeks Just a mere eight weeks after the launch, Robinsons Brewery has announced the production of the one-millionth pint of Trooper - over six months ahead of schedule. This equates to more than 20,000 pints being drunk every day since the launch in Stockport, in May.

And this daily demand is expected to continue to increase through August, as by then, Trooper will have had listings in all the major pub chains, including: Punch, Spirit, Enterprise and Wetherspoons - as well as the major wholesalers, meaning that any pub in Britain will have access to the beer. This is expected to parallel similar increases at Retail, with the beer being available in more and more outlets, due to demand. Trooper, was personally designed and developed as a top quality, Premium British Beer by Iron Maiden vocalist, and real ale enthusiast, Bruce Dickinson, together with Robinsons' Head Brewer, Martyn Weeks. With its focus firmly on taste and easydrinking, it already the UK’s most liked ale on Facebook - despite fierce commercial competition from a well established TV advertised ale. Robinsons Managing Director, Oliver Robinson, said: “We are amazed to reach this mark in such a short time, a million pints already is way ahead of all rational expectations, and are grateful for the support

we have had from the retailers, Maiden fans, real ale enthusiasts, our distributors, and the beer trade generally, as they were so quick to catch on to the genuine and unique quality of this beer.

And what is also unparalleled and truly remarkable, is that this has all been achieved by word of mouth and online.

“This is a great showcase for our new brew house and demonstrates the sorts of volumes it is capable of producing. It’s very exciting to observe Trooper as it expands across Britain and then, we fully expect, internationally. It is easily the fastest selling new beer Robinsons have ever had - and quite possibly anyone else, too.”

Acknowledging this, renowned beer writer Pete Brown cites Bruce Dickinson as “ of the most passionate beer enthusiasts I’ve ever met” and describes Trooper as having...“a building dryness that makes it naggingly drinkable, a pint that seems to evaporate from the glass.”

National supermarket chain, Morrisons, second that claim by also reporting Trooper as their fastest-ever selling, newly-launched ale, with sales exceeding expectations tenfold. Mark Land, Morrisons’ Ales Buyer, said: “Trooper has been phenomenally successful since we launched it four weeks ago. The bottle’s label has definitely been a huge factor in its success - as has the push our stores have given it.”

“It just shows that, like most things, at the end of the day it is the quality that counts.”

Last year, Robinsons produced 13.3m pints of beer in total. If the first eight weeks of production and sales of Trooper are anything to go by, the Cheshire family brewers could quite possibly double the volume of beer they produce in a year. David Bremner, adds: “No-one has ever launched a beer in the UK with this much potential. The demand continues to expand as whenever people taste it, they just want more.

Robinsons Marketing Director, David Bremner, adds: “Looking at the customer journey, Trooper is truly unique. Fans find the beer, take a photo and post it on Facebook, this drives more fans to the store who then clear the shelves and post a photo of an empty shelf.

“The 'problem' we have is forecasting quantities for production of Trooper, but what a great challenge to have. On top of that, we have had interest and enquiries for Trooper from 184 countries and, together with Sovereign, our international distributor, we are currently planning Trooper’s worldwide expansion and dealing with the import/export bureaucracy.

“People are driving miles to pubs to sample the draught - which is rolling out across the country in a remarkably quick time. Publicans are finding the positive reaction to the beer is creating a lot of demand from their regulars.

“Maiden’s global following is immense and in all corners of the planet; so we are focusing on the wonderful opportunity of making this a global beer, which would be a truly remarkable feat for a genuine British ale.” 13

get me there – the smarter way to get around Greater Manchester Transport leaders have given their seal of approval to the name for Greater Manchester’s much anticipated new smart ticketing system, which is due to be introduced in stages starting in 2014. The name for the new scheme – get me there – has been chosen to reflect how smart ticketing will make journeys by public transport easier and more flexible, whether by tram, by bus, by train – or any combination of the three. Chair of the Transport for Greater Manchester Committee, Councillor Andrew Fender, said: “get me there is one of the most exciting developments in public transport in Greater Manchester in many years. “It will revolutionise the way that people pay for their transport needs, and will help to remove many of the barriers that get in the way of people making best use of our buses, trains and trams. “With more than 30 independent, commercial bus operators, a tram network and several inter-regional rail operators running public transport services across and into the region, our smart ticketing scheme will be one of the most advanced of its type in the world. “But we want it to be as simple as possible for people at the point of use – hence a name that says ‘what it does on the tin’. “London may have its Oyster and Liverpool its Walrus, but we like to embrace the challenge of doing things differently here, which is why we have chosen a different kind of name with get me there.” Councillor Fender added: “We knew that people would expect our scheme to be like Oyster, but both life and technology have moved on since its introduction. “People will have a variety of ways to use get me there and that’s why our focus is about what the system can do for you, rather than the name of a single card. “Yes, there will be a dedicated card – called my get me there – for the scheme, but people with an existing TfGM-issued concessionary photo card, such as an igo or a national concessionary scheme card, will be able to use these cards instead. “get me there will also accept contactless 14

bank cards when we roll out the scheme on Metrolink and, in the near future, we expect that people will be able to use their smart phones as well. “The technology behind get me there is being built to be as flexible as possible to accommodate any future devices – even the ones we don’t know about yet.” Passengers will be able to use the scheme by touching their get me there-enabled device – be it a card or, in the future, a phone – on to an electronic validator, which will then check if they have a valid travel card or enough ‘pay as you go’ credit in their account to travel. The installation of get me there validators on Metrolink stops is due to start later this year, one of the first visible signs that smart ticketing is on its way. “We’re introducing get me there on Metrolink first to make sure we get all the basics working right before extending it to bus operators,” explains Cllr Fender. “We are still working out detail around the timescales but Metrolink passengers can expect to be using get me there in the second half of 2014, bus passengers in 2015 and rail thereafter.” With eight out of every ten public transport journeys in Greater Manchester made by bus, all efforts are being made to make sure that get me there will be available on bus services as soon as possible after Metrolink. Richard Soper is First Group’s Strategic Development Director for the North of England and chair of GMTL, the partnership organisation representing all the bus and train companies operating in the region. He sees the introduction of get me there as the next big step in making travelling with different operators easier for the public. He said: “We have all learned a great deal from System One, the range of paper tickets we currently promote that allow passengers to switch between different modes of travel and different operators. We have therefore

been working very closely with TfGM on the details of the new scheme - and also on the scheme name. “We wanted something that helps customers understand what the scheme does and how they will be able to use - it and get me there does just that. It will give everyone greater choice and greater flexibility in their travel options, as well as making it easier to purchase and use multimodal tickets.” Chris Bowles is Managing Director of Stagecoach Manchester and Chair of OneBus, the association of Greater Manchester bus operating companies. He believes that the flexibility of get me there will help to maximise the uptake of smart ticketing across the region and help to increase the appeal of public transport. He said: “If you include all the existing concessionary card holders, there are more than half a million smart-enabled cards already out there in Greater Manchester. Once the scheme goes live, concession holders will be able to register with get me there to enhance the benefits of their existing card.” Councillor Fender expects the decision on the name of the scheme to be the first step in communicating to the public how smart ticketing is going to work, adding: “We know that there is a lot of interest and expectation regarding smart ticketing, so, now that we have a name, we can start to communicate how it will work and when people will be able to use it across the various different modes of transport. “Agreeing the name is a crucial part of that and we will now be working to get a new information website up and running in the next couple of months so that people can keep up to date with our progress. “We will also be letting people register their interest in the scheme now, either online at or through TfGM Travelshops, so that as soon as get me there becomes available on Metrolink in 2014, we can contact them directly with information on how to sign up.”

NATEP launched by Government Minister

Aerospace businesses are set to benefit from up to £90m of overall funding to develop new, advanced technologies, Business and Energy Minister Michael Fallon has announced. The minister has unveiled plans to hold a competitive call for businesses, through the Technology Strategy Board, for up to £25m of Government funding. This investment will finance collaborative research and technology projects that are consistent with the objectives of the Aerospace Industrial Strategy. It will be targeted at small and mediumsized aerospace suppliers who will be invited, later in the year, to submit bids for a share of the fund. The £25m will be match funded by the winning businesses, creating up to £50m of total investment. This will be the first such call utilising some of the £2b joint Government and industry funding committed to support the Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI). The National Aerospace Technology Exploitation Programme (NATEP), led by the Aerospace Growth Partnership to address skills shortages and improve research and development collaboration, has also been officially launched, after successfully completing due diligence. This £40m project is supported by £23m from the second round of the Government’s Advanced Manufacturing Supply Chain Initiative (AMSCI), and £17m from industry. Michael Fallon, Business and Energy Minister, said: “We have a world-leading aerospace sector underscored by our ability to excel in areas like research & development. “It’s this commitment to innovation, through our Aerospace Industrial Strategy, that will be a crucial driver for long-term growth. If we are to get ahead of the game we must create the right conditions now that incentivise businesses to invest in the UK and develop new, exciting products. This new funding will

help to do just that and also ensure a high level of quality projects receive the support they need to get off the ground. “The National Aerospace Technology Exploitation Programme (NATEP), is positive news for UK aerospace, and a further demonstration of Government and industry working together to strengthen our supply chains.” Iain Gray, Chief Executive of the Technology Strategy Board, said: “The creation of the Aerospace Technology Institute demonstrates the UK’s long term commitment to this key industrial sector. “As the UK’s innovation agency, the Technology Strategy Board is well placed to manage this first open technology funding competition on behalf of the Aerospace Growth Partnership. The successful projects will help the UK to deliver the leading edge innovation envisaged in the Aerospace Industrial Strategy.”

“This programme will be managed by ADS and delivered across England by the network of regional trade associations including NWAA for the North West of England. We feel that NATEP addresses the key barriers to the development and exploitation of new products and processes in the aerospace supply chain. NATEP will support both SME and Mid-Cap companies with a structured technology development process, aerospace R&T management expertise and the all important customer engagement that will help ensure new technologies reach the market. “We are looking forward to working with companies in the North West of England, and their customers, to make a significant contribution to the target of 100 new technologies for the UK aerospace supply chain.”

Graham Chisnall, Deputy CEO of aerospace trade organization, ADS, said: “The National Aerospace Technology Exploitation Programme, will embed important new technology and capability into the UK supply chain. “Helping smaller companies to invest and develop new technologies will help us achieve long term competitive advantage. This funding shows that the work of the Aerospace Growth Partnership is delivering benefits at all levels of the supply chain and closely co-ordinates with the work of the Aerospace Technology Institute.” David Bailey, Director of Operations for NWAA, said: “The Northwest Aerospace Alliance welcomes the announcement of UK government support for the National Aerospace Technology Exploitation Programme. 15

EON Reality, the world's leading interactive 3D solutions provider for businesses and education, are already based at One Central Park.

Manchester City Council to set up new holding company to develop digital sites Manchester City Council has announced plans to establish a new holding company that will help support the growth and development of strategic digital sites in Manchester – creating new employment and businesses opportunities for the city. The holding company will act as a ‘mother brand’ for the family of ‘Projects’, bringing together a portfolio of existing city-owned digital assets – including The Sharp Project – and acting as the fulcrum for the development of new digital assets in the city. The new sites that will be brought into the company, including One Central Park on Central Park and the former Fujitsu building in West Gorton, will have separate branding identities and will operate as individual enterprises. Combined, the three sites will have in excess of 450,000sq ft of floor space dedicated to creative digital businesses that could create up to 1,300 jobs over the next three years. The sites all include the development of skills and advancement of education as an additional focus. The City Council wholly-owned holding 16

company, will help provide strategic direction to the digital sector, harness the activities of a range of agencies involved in this sector, identify gaps in provision and bring forward strategies to fill them. It will also be responsible for managing the three separate subsidiary ‘Projects’. A business plan for the company will be submitted for approval by the City Council’s Executive later this year. Cllr Nigel Murphy, Manchester City Council’s Executive Member for Environment, who has responsibility for Digital Manchester, said: “We want to bring these three important Council owned assets under one umbrella body so the group can further improve our position in this rapidly expanding and competitive global market. “The City’s creative and digital sector is vital for Manchester’s economy. It stimulates growth and attracts new

entrepreneurs, start-ups, capital and talent to the city. It is clear that over time we will need to expand this asset base as demand outstrips supply. “The holding company will allow us to create a flexible platform so we can respond quickly to opportunities as they present themselves.” Sue Woodward OBE, Director of The Sharp Project and Manchester’s Creative Media Champion, said: “We have created something very special at The Sharp Project and it would be prudent to capitalise on this opportunity. “Creating a new company to bring these three important assets together, is a major milestone for us and for Manchester as a whole. The Council’s foresight in grasping this opportunity with both hands and believing in our ambition is truly commendable and quite remarkable.”

Regional Growth Fund supports Greater Manchester’s scientific ambition Greater Manchester has secured investment from the Regional Growth Fund (RGF) to support the growth of scientific enterprise across the region. The funds will be used to stimulate commercial investment in scientific discoveries and to increase scientific entrepreneurship and business formation.

By exploiting the potential of Greater Manchester’s world-class research base, we have the opportunity retain and develop our high-value skills, creating new jobs and businesses in the UK.”

This will be achieved by supporting startups, small-medium companies and collaborative projects between universities and businesses to stimulate research, development and job creation. The successful bid was submitted by Greater Manchester Local Enterprise Partnership (GMLEP), and Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA), with support from a public-private partnership which includes Greater Manchester's four universities, Manchester Science Parks, Business Growth Hub, and UM13. The bid was put together by New Economy, on behalf of the GMLEP and GMCA. GMLEP’s science bid has provisionally secured multi-million pound backing to help attract private sector investment and create jobs. Mike Blackburn, chairman of the GMLEP, said: “This is fantastic news, not only for Greater Manchester but also for the UK economy as a whole. “This investment will help to deliver a radical science programme that will boost economic growth and rebalance the national economy.

Lord Peter Smith, chair of the Greater Manchester Combined Authority, said: “Greater Manchester is home to four universities and one of the largest student populations in Europe – we want to better connect our academic excellence with our business base. “This grant is recognition of the priority which Greater Manchester is giving to supporting its science base as an engine of job creation and economic growth.” Cllr Kieran Quinn, Greater Manchester Combined Authority lead for investment, strategy and finance, said: “This bid comprises a number of elements that will help Greater Manchester attract further investment. “It will enable the creation of small investment funds focusing on emerging discoveries and technology. Innovation accounts will allow graduates to start new enterprises. They will also make it possible for small and medium businesses to work closely with our academic sector to develop products and services that will help them grow.”

Blue Rainbow Aparthotels tops June’s STR Reports Blue Rainbow ApartHotels – a collection of 4* and 5* boutique serviced apartments – has performed over and above its Manchester competitors, appearing on top of the STR hotel industry reports in June. The group’s flagship ApartHotel, Manchester Central, which is located in the city’s Knott Mill area, secured a two per cent increased share of the luxury and upper upscale market in June 2013, compared with June last year. This saw Blue Rainbow ApartHotels outperform key industry players, including the Hilton and the Radisson, in occupancy levels.

their performance. Will Hannah, Managing Director at Blue Rainbow ApartHotels, said: “We’re thrilled with the STR figures for June and feel they demonstrate the excellent service offering we provide in Manchester city centre.

“We pride ourselves on offering a homefrom-home experience for both business guests and those on a weekend city break The chain, which also includes a and believe this report confirms our property on Manchester High Street and increased market share when it comes to on Edinburgh’s Queen Street, netted providing quality accommodation.” £4.47 more on average per room sold, Blue Rainbow ApartHotels recently which helped to boost its ratings on the invested £250,000 refurbishing and rehotel scale. launching Manchester Central rooms The STR report, which is calculated upon that had been damaged during floods in receipt of hotels’ daily figures, is a global 2012. It offers 1-bed and 2-bed hotel industry performance report tool apartments over nine floors. It offers that hoteliers register with to monitor

Saver, Executive and Premium accommodation, with prices starting from £64 per night. The company’s second North West serviced apartment complex, Manchester High Street, launched in April 2012. It is located on the edge of the city’s popular Northern Quarter and has 19 1-bed and 2-bed apartments across five floors of this stylish building and retains some original features, including wooden beams. It offers Saver, Executive and Premium accommodation, with prices also from £64 per night. Blue Rainbow ApartHotels plans to add another 560 rooms across the group, including sites in Manchester, Liverpool and Leeds and is looking into expanding its offerings to include onsite dinings. 17

Hub perfect for summer cycling With more cyclists out and about as the summer progresses, now is the perfect time to use Manchester city centre’s the state-of-the-art Cycle Hub. Based underneath the landmark City Tower in Piccadilly Gardens, Transport for Greater Manchester’s (TfGM) Cycle Hub offers secure parking for up to 200 cyclists, as well as changing areas, lockers and showers. And with a new pay-as-you-go offer on standard membership, giving you swipe card access for ten days (which don’t need to be consecutive), you can take advantage of a hassle-free – and hopefully sunny – commute to work. Membership of the hub is based on subscription and pay-as-you go models, with two tiers available -standard or premium, which includes the use of showers. ●

A new flexible pay-as-you-go scheme: £10 for ten visits (standard only)

Cycle retailer, Edinburgh Bicycle Co-operative, also has a base within the hub, providing members and non-members with bicycle repair and maintenance services. Councillor Andrew Fender, Chair of the TfGM Committee, said: “The City Tower Cycle Hub provides a range of facilities for cyclists wanting to travel in and out of central Manchester – so why not give it a try this summer? “The City Tower Cycle Hub is part of our longterm agenda to encourage more people to cycle in our region, while other programmes include free cycling training and bike maintenance courses.”

Annual membership: £100 for standard or £200 for premium An eight month ‘seasonal membership’ option: £60 standard or £120 premium Monthly membership: £10 for standard or £20 for premium

More information on the hub – including on services and membership – can be found at

Local businesses can now be recognised as having national ethical standards A businessman based in Greater Manchester, Adrian Ashton, has recently been certificated as an approved auditor for a national quality standard that allows companies to clearly evidence their impact, commitment, and support to their local community, their workplace, and the wider environment. With ethical concerns becoming majorly important for companies to act upon in light of consumer interests, and changes to various regulations governing how companies act, the standard is increasingly being welcomed by firms as a way to manage these within the context of their day-to-day operations.

The Responsible Business Standard (part of the ORB - Organisation for Responsible Businesses), has been developed with a leading national university, Anglia Ruskin, and objectively certificates a company’s commitment to supporting its local community, employees, suppliers, and wider ethical issues based on their practices and activities. It has also been endorsed by several public bodies, MPs, the Federation of Small Business (FSB), and the European Parliament. 18

To date, most auditors for the standard are based outside of the region, so this development is said to be particularly welcome. Jill Poet, of the ORB, said: “We’ve been constantly impressed by the ethical approaches Adrian has taken in managing his own enterprise. “We were aware that local businesses in this region struggled to benefit from this standard owing to there not being local approved auditors – with Adrian’s certification, we’re glad to have been able to ensure that Greater Manchester and Cheshire aren't missing out.”

The standard has been designed specifically with small businesses in mind and its pricing reflects this. For further information on the standard For further information on being recognised as a ‘Responsible Business’

Quarry Bank Mill lands starring role in new TV drama series ‘The Mill’ Styal’s historic Quarry Bank Mill, has been playing host to an exciting and darkly-moving series for Channel 4. One of Britain's greatest industrial heritage sites, Quarry Bank Mill comprises an 18th century cotton mill with working machinery, a restored Victorian Apprentice House, mill workers' village and country estate, all set in the valley of the River Bollin at Styal, in Cheshire. Now, Channel 4 Commissioning Editor for History, Julia Harrington, has commissioned award-winning, TV production company, Darlow Smithson productions (DSP), to make a powerful new drama series, The Mill, based on the real life story of the owners and workers who lived there. Finding its main characters amongst the multitude of workers employed at the Mill, the drama brings to life what it was really like to be at sharp end of the industrial revolution. Julia Harrington, said: “It's an incredibly exciting project and The Mill is the perfect prism for this moment in British history. “We access it all through characters who are recognisable today, comprising rebellious teenagers, upwardly mobile working people and a management class riven between profit and conscience. It's the story of an emerging community, full of friendship, humour, rivalries and secrets.” At a time of immense social and industrial change, Quarry Bank Mill represented the shining light of modern thinking; the brain-

child of the financially driven but philanthropic Greg family. Set in the heart of the countryside, it is very different to the mills of nearby overcrowded Manchester.

apprentice eventually becoming the manager of the Mill, but dissention was punished ruthlessly: runaway girls would have their heads shaved. Julian Ware, Creative Director of Darlow Smithson, said: “DSP has always had a strong track record in history programming and the move into drama is an exciting new outlet for that expertise.” Rooted firmly in the real history of the Mill, the characters and storylines in the drama are based on the extraordinary Quarry Bank archive, which comprises more than 20,000 letters, wage books, contracts, diaries, rent books and interview transcripts.

Employing hundreds of people, Quarry Bank recruited children as young as nine as unpaid apprentices from orphanages and workhouses; migrants from as far afield as London, Ireland, Scotland and Norfolk flocked to Quarry Bank with its purpose-built village, school, church and surgery. However the real drive for the Gregs was profit. Hours were long and hard in dangerous and unhealthy conditions, which would today be likened to a sweatshop, and for many of this emerging working class, this was their first experience of rules, regulation and employers to answer to. Hard work was rewarded, with one young

Written by acclaimed writer and playwright, John Fay, the first episode of the four-part series of The Mill, can be seen on Channel 4 at 8.00pm on Sunday, 28th July, 2013. Open to the public, Quarry Bank Mill is operated and maintained by the National Trust and further details can be found, here: And if the TV series of The Mill has whetted your appetite for more detail of life in and around Quarry Bank Mill, author, David Sekers, has written a superb book: A Lady of Cotton (Hannah Greg, Mistress of Quarry Bank Mill) which is an immensely enjoyable and emotional tale of a well-to-do, millowner’s wife’s attempt to improve the lot of workers in her husband’s employ: eg.php 19

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Manchester Inter pulls the c After a magnificent 18 days – where even the usually temperamental North West weather played its part the Manchester International Festival (MIF) of 2013 has finally bowed out, leaving many thousands of event visitors, both local and those from further afield, with fond, abiding memories of what the city, and its environs, has to offer the world. With national and international stars of stage, screen, music and the performing arts all combining to deliver the very best of performances and works, it would have to be a very grey and mundane soul who couldn’t find something to brighten their mood – there was a veritable feast of delicious fare on offer. by Helen May in The Machine - Photo Francesca Annis (Clara)


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Duo UK's Senior Team with the £750,000 co-ex machine

Duo UK celebrates 25 years in business with £1.1m investment spend Polythene manufacturer and packaging supplier Duo UK, has marked its 25th year in business with a 12-month investment spree. £1.1m has been ploughed into new machinery and software as the company positions itself for new markets and reinforces its presence in its existing specialisms. The family-owned business, which is based in Manchester, manufactures bespoke polythene packaging for the retail, e-tail and industrial markets, as well as supplying additional branded packaging materials such as tissue, paper bags and gift boxes. The bulk of Duo’s investment has been made in a £750,000 Italian-made co-extrusion (co-ex) machine… customised to Duo’s requirements. The move places the company at the forefront of polythene manufacturing technology and increases the firm’s film manufacturing capacity by 40%. Co-extruders manufacture polythene in layers; in contrast to traditional techniques, which produce polythene in a single (mono) sheet. This produces a number of business and environmental advantages as Duo’s Managing Director, David Brimelow, explains: “Co-extrusion has better efficiency and a higher output than our current machinery, thereby allowing us to produce film more quickly, while the resulting polythene is stronger, has better opacity and greater visual appeal - all things that clients look for. “Production costs and the environmental impact are also cut thanks to a substantial 22

reduction in energy consumption, increased amounts of recycled content and lower levels of raw materials and waste “These technical advantages open the door to new markets including the courier sector, while the co-ex technology also allows us to produce blends for specialist applications, such as film which can withstand high levels of heat.” Finance for the deal was raised via the Italian markets, which offered surprisingly competitive terms as part of the Italian Government’s support of their own manufacturing sector. Paul Teasdale, Duo UK’s Finance Director, said: “Investing in the co-ex machine was essential for the next stage of Duo’s growth so being able to access foreign capital markets at competitive rates helped speed up the investment process compared to UK alternatives. “The exact funding method is known as forfaiting, which has a long history in Europe as an established financing method that lends funds to exporters against receivables, backed by an insurance policy covering the risk of failure of the buyer. This spreads the risk for all parties involved, and offers the following advantages: the Italian manufacturer is certain of payment, our UK borrowing capacity was unaffected and, at the time, the outlook for the sterling to euro exchange rate made this a particularly attractive option.

“Even with the recent changes to the sterling euro exchange rate, this has proved to be a great alternative to traditional asset financing.” In addition to the co-extruder, Duo has invested £225,000 in a 6-colour flexographic printing press and Manufacturing Production Scheduling (MRP) and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software. David explained: “This trio of strategic investments gives us a great platform to build on our first quarter of a century in business - they open the door to new markets, allows us to offer new or better products to existing customers and enables us to better integrate our main Manchester operations with our second manufacturing site in Nottingham. “In 25 years, we’ve grown our turnover to £25m; I’m incredibly proud of what the team has achieved and we’re rolling out a series of employee engagement initiatives to ensure we celebrate together as we start to implement the next phase of our business plan. “The significant investment in the co-ex machine and the ingenious method of funding Paul spearheaded, speaks volumes about our positive, pro-active attitude to strengthening and growing our business whatever the economic climate and despite Government “support” for manufacturing.”

FSB report reveals the power of small businesses in the local economy In an exclusive report, the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), and the Centre for Local Economic Strategies, surveyed local authorities across the UK and found that in the last year, they spent a total of £8.7b buying goods and services in their local area. The findings highlight how doing business locally is better value for money as small local firms generated £746m more for the local economy compared to large local businesses – even though more than £500m less was spent with them. The research shows that for every £1 spent with a small or medium-sized business (SME), 63p was re-spent in the local area compared to 40p in every £1 spent with a larger business. The FSB wants to see more local authorities using small businesses in their areas to help boost economic growth. The business group believes that if each authority had spent an additional five per cent of their budget locally, and committed just three per cent more of that to small local firms, an additional £788m could have been generated for local economies. The FSB’s report, Local Procurement, making the most of small businesses, one year on, is the second report on the power of local authorities and how they utilise local businesses in their areas for goods and services. It shows good practice across many of responding local authorities, including 86% of local authorities breaking contracts into smaller chunks to help SMEs win work. For example Leicester City Council has opened up opportunities for SMEs within larger contracts and ensures that large contracts include clauses which make sure small local firms are used in the supply chain. Furthermore, Surrey County Council, has committed to switching lower value construction and maintenance projects from a single contractor to a panel of small local suppliers. John Allan, National Chairman, Federation of Small Businesses, said: “This report shows the power and strength of small firms to create jobs and growth in the local economy if they are given the help to do so. “With budgets being cut, there seems to be an increasing realisation that spending more locally will benefit the local economy. The evidence speaks for itself. Spending locally invests in jobs and growth for the area. We want to see more of this happening across the country.

“Engagement with small firms is essential. While our members do win contracts, many are still deterred by the process. We had a good response to the survey, which shows local authorities working with SMEs, but we say that more of this will help boost the local economy.

National Chairman John Allan with FSB colleagues out and about in Cheshire

“As with most things, a one-size-fits-all approach won’t work and something that works for one council won’t necessarily work in another. This is why we’re calling on local authorities to work with their local FSB to create an environment in which small firms can grow and prosper and the areas they work in.” Business Secretary, Vince Cable MP, said: “This report shows what I have known for a long time - more of our small and mediumsized companies must get a fair share of public contracts. “In central government, we are already trying to level the playing field with an aspirational target that 25% of our contracts should be awarded to small and medium sized enterprises by 2015. To make this happen, we have put measures in place. A new website that provides free access to public sector contract opportunities worth over £10,000, the abolition of pre-qualification questionnaires for contracts under £100,000 in value, and the appointment of a Crown Representative for SMEs will all help. “But there’s more we can do. We are currently working on Lord Young’s ‘single market’ recommendation to establish a simple and consistent approach for all public sector procurement contracts. This should mean more SMEs can take advantage of the £230b of potential business each year.” Local Government Minister, Brandon Lewis MP, said: “Small businesses are the heartbeat

of our local economies. Today's report shows the benefits of working with local firms - for every £1 spent with a small business 63p is reinvested locally. “Councils have billion pound procurement budgets at their disposal and they should be supporting their local economy by cutting back procurement red tape, like PreQualification Questions and unnecessary equality requirements, in order to allow small firms to bid for more contracts. I'd like to see every council increase what they are investing in their own communities so they help it grow and prosper.” Neil McInroy, Chief Executive, Centre for Local Economic Strategies, said: “Small businesses are the bedrock to many local economies and through progressive public procurement, we have the means of making sure they remain so. “Local authorities, by taking up excellent procurement practices, can ensure that local economies remain healthy, local jobs are created and strong supply chains are extended. This report highlights how we can accelerate these benefits and how a virtuous relationship between local authorities, local FSB and small businesses can be a winning combination for local economies.” Cllr Peter Fleming, Chair of the LGA's Improvement and Innovation Board, said: “Councils have a vital role to play in driving economic growth by helping create the right infrastructure and environment at a local level to enable business to succeed, from maintaining roads to helping companies cut down on their energy bills. “At the heart of this, councils are ensuring that they themselves are open for business, in particular working with SMEs and local suppliers to make it easier for them to bid successfully for public contracts on everything from building houses to caring for the elderly. “By spending money locally, we know that we are helping to pay the wages of local people, giving them money to spend in local shops and helping the whole local economy as a result. “Half of all council contracts are now awarded to small and medium-sized businesses, compared to just 13% for central government, and we will continue to work with the FSB to seek out and promote best practice from councils who are simplifying procurement practices and finding new ways to help their local small businesses compete.”


Manchester City Council greener but more work needed Manchester City Council has become cleaner and greener over the last four years but more work is needed if it is to meet targets to reduce the amount of energy it uses. importance in Clayton, achieving country park status for Heaton Park, developing climate change training for City Council staff, and supporting an application to secure £1m funding for the Real Food Wythenshawe Project, enabling people to grow their own food.

New figures show the City Council reduced its carbon emissions by seven per cent last year by improving how energy is used in its buildings, on transport and on street lighting. The latest annual carbon reduction plan report states that energy efficiency works, such as installing new boilers, smart meters and high-efficiency LED lighting into buildings, as well as ensuring staff use fewer vehicle journeys, has helped achieve good progress over the last year. Other work included planting 10,000 trees across the city, creating a site of biological

This reduction is part of the City Council’s long-term commitment to reduce its carbon emissions by 41% by the end of the decade (from 2009/10), as part of its contribution to the citywide climate change action plan Manchester - A Certain Future. The City Council has made a 14% reduction over the last three years but more work is still needed if the target is to be achieved. The City Council will continue to reduce emissions over the next year by installing more energy efficiency measures in its buildings, setting up a new textile recycling service for schools, working with other organisations to transform unused land, planting more trees and hedges, and looking into replacing street sign lighting with LEDs. City Council staff have now returned to the

Town Hall Extension, which has been refurbished to high environmental standards with 20% of the building’s energy coming from low-carbon sources, which will contribute to future savings. Councillor Nigel Murphy, Manchester City Council’s Executive Member for the Environment, said: “These figures are very important and show we have introduced some significant schemes to reduce our energy use and are developing many more. “However, we cannot afford to be complacent and we are aware that there is a lot of work to do if we are going to achieve our own target by 2020. Climate change is not just a challenge, it also offers opportunities, particularly for the creation of jobs in the emerging low carbon sector, and we are continuing to work with a wide range of organisations to make sure the city makes the most of this opportunity.” The City Council will also work with other Greater Manchester authorities to plan how to make major buildings become more environmentally friendly.

Transformation of Altrincham Interchange enters new stage The next phase in the major redevelopment of Altrincham Interchange has begun. The existing station is being completely rebuilt as part of the £19m project to transform the interchange into a new, fully integrated transport hub with much improved facilities, accessible to all. The project, which is being delivered by Laing O’Rourke and overseen by Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM), is due to be completed in the latter half of 2014. As a result of the exciting, new development, no bus services will call at the interchange until the project is completed, and services will instead be using a number of alternative, temporary bus stops within the town centre. The Metrolink stop and train station will remain open as usual and, later this summer, a brand new information and ticket office will open on Platform 1, selling tickets and offering advice on services. Passengers are advised to check which of the temporary stops their bus services will use during the refurbishment by logging on to, picking up a leaflet from staff or checking 24

station is going to affect people’s travel and that is why we’ve rolled out detailed information at stops, at the interchange and on our website, to explain what’s changing and how. “We are advising all passengers to familiarise themselves with the changes before they travel to avoid any potential difficulties.”

posters at the interchange. Buses are listed by both service number and destination. Alternatively, passengers can call Traveline on 0871 200 22 33 (calls cost 10p per minute plus any network charges) for information. Michael Renshaw, TfGM’s Bus & Rail Director, said: “This is a key part of the project to completely transform the existing bus station into a brand new building – providing a fantastic facility for passengers. “We fully appreciate that closing the bus

Leader of Trafford Council, Councillor Matthew Colledge, said: “It’s great that work is stepping up to the next phase, moving us closer to a brand new, attractive, light and safe interchange.” As well as a new ticket office, the project is providing a brand new, modern concourse at the interchange, improved links between bus, train and tram services and enhanced CCTV and passenger information systems. As part of the Greater Manchester Commuter Cycle Project, a dedicated cycle hub will also be provided at the interchange, providing secure, covered cycle parking for more than 50 bikes.

R.O.T.TEN CLAUSE Do you read the “small print” when signing contracts on behalf of your business? Or maybe you use your own printed terms – but how effective will they be? more eager to attract that key sale. Purchasers may throw caution to the wind to secure a more competitive price from a new supplier or hastily complete formalities to meet their supply chain commitments. These, or various other reasons, can cause misunderstandings between the parties as to what was intended.

A common theme in contract disputes such as contracts for the sale or hire of goods - is whose terms and conditions actually apply. Terms and conditions, which have been professionally drafted, are more likely to be effective - but even then there can be problems. In the current economic climate where finances may be stretched, sellers may be

Recently, an electrical appliances wholesaler sold, and subsequently distributed, goods to a national retailer that days later went into well publicised administration. At that point, the wholesaler contacted Salehs. The wholesaler knew of the importance of including a retention of title clause into their terms and conditions. However, the clause which they included - without taking legal advice – was not appropriate to the situation.

Any remaining bargaining power was lost by the fact that the wholesaler had signed and returned the retailer’s purchase order, which stated that upon signing, the order was subject to the retailer’s terms and conditions only. Consequently the goods, valued at £100,000, remained an asset of the retailer rather than being returned to the wholesaler who, unable to establish title to the goods supplied, became an unsecured creditor. Salehs will be sharing dispute avoidance tips in their seminar “Protecting your business”, on 3 October, 2013 at Manchester Airport Marriott Hotel. Registration is free and places are limited.

You are invited to attend... Salehs LLP is inviting local businesses to attend its “Protecting your business” seminar and networking event on 3 October 2013 at Manchester Airport Marriott Hotel, Hale Road, Hale Barns, Altrincham WA15 8XW.

The event is FREE to attend and places are limited.

For registration, please contact Jennifer Connell on 0161 434 9991 or email Speakers will be from Salehs LLP and there will be a guest speaker from Kings Chambers in Manchester to provide tips on how to protect your business. Registration 3:30 – 4:00pm Seminar: How to Protect your Business 4:00 – 5:00pm Networking: 5:00 – 6:00pm with free refreshments and light bites.

Care agency seeks nurses to meet demand A Cheshire nursing agency has announced a number of vacancies for experienced General Nurses (RGNs) and Mental Health Nurses (RMNs) following an increase in demand for its services. Jane Lewis Health & Social Care, based in Chester, is now looking to increase their pool of nurses for a wide range of both permanent and temporary positions including chemotherapy, cosmetic surgery and practise nurse work. Managing Director, Nick Hodson, said: “Being an agency nurse provides a flexible career path, and many of our employees say that the variety of the work available has helped develop their skill-set and make the most of their talent.” RGN Hazel Colville, from Bebbington, joined Jane Lewis almost six years ago and finds agency work ideal as a working mum. Hazel, said: “Working with an agency has had huge benefits in my career.

“Although many ‘full time’ nurses enjoy the security of a permanent contract, for me it just simply wouldn’t work. With three children between the ages of 11 and 14, I need that extra flexibility to fit my career around school hours and holidays. “Working with Jane Lewis has enabled me to build some great relationships with hospitals in my area, which has resulted in the hospitals requesting me specifically when contracts come up. “Agency work doesn’t mean the odd shift every now and again, it’s simply hours to suit your needs – perfect for a working mum of three.” Working with hospitals from across the North West to help nurses gain employment within their speciality sector, and established in 1987, Jane Lewis Health & Social Care offers jobs in nursing, social work and occupational health, as well as care assistant roles. For more information about Jane Lewis and the services they provide, visit 25

Debbie Abrahams MP publishes Late Payment Inquiry recommendations A cross-party parliamentary inquiry, convened and chaired by Debbie Abrahams, MP for Oldham East and Saddleworth, has published 11 recommendations about how to tackle the issue of late payment to small and medium sized businesses. Ms Abrahams, said: “A recurring theme in the evidence our panel was given is that, ultimately, the issue is one of leadership. “Until top CEOs, and their executive board members, make a decision to act ethically in business, and treat our small and medium sized businesses fairly, this problem will persist. “The public has grown tired of hearing about huge, greed driven, pay packets, pay-offs for failure and tax evasion; but allowing a culture of late payment to persist unchallenged is another board-level decision that directly effects ordinary, hardworking, people across the country. Incidentally, shareholders also have a responsibility to hold their executives to account. “Appearing at the inquiry took courage from our contributors. The top FTSE companies have been under scrutiny in recent years and those we invited could have chosen to ignore our request to give evidence - but they did appear and we are grateful for their candour. “But special thanks should go to the SME owners who really demonstrated the damaging impact late payment has on our businesses not to mention the emotional impact on the owners and employees themselves. “I am also grateful to my colleagues from across the political spectrum for their participation on the Inquiry panel and demonstrating that, although we may have different political views, we can work together to find a solution to this persistent problem.” The other members of the MPs’ panel were: Mike Crockart, Liberal Democrat MP for Edinburgh West; Alex Cunningham Labour MP for Stockton North; Caroline Dineage, Conservative MP for Gosport; Rt Hon Michael Meacher Labour MP for Oldham West and Royton; Toby Perkins Labour MP for Chesterfield; and Robin Walker Conservative MP for Worcester. Richard Gregg, Regional Chairman, Federation of Small Businesses, said: “This research clearly highlights the ongoing problems faced by small firms when they are paid late. The Be Fair, Pay on Time campaign has done a good job in getting big businesses to sign up to the prompt payment code but there is still more to be done. “We have said for some time that the Government and local authorities should include terms in contracts for prompt payment to be passed down the supply chain. “This report provides a good starting point to open up the discussion on what can be done to make sure small firms are paid promptly for the work they have done.” 26

proposals in this report are not implemented in the undiluted form presented in this report.” Steve Paul, Managing Director of SDP Screeds Limited, who also contributed to the inquiry as an business owner who has suffered from late payments – and who told the MP's that the late payment culture is 'organised crime' - said of the report: “I'm really hopeful that this Left to right Steve Sutherland, Dortech, Richard Gregg, Regional Chairman, FSB Manchester and North Cheshire, Steve Paul, SDP Screeds and Debbie Abrahams MP. report will give big business leaders the push they need to change the way CEO at the Forum of Private Business (FPB), Phil Orford MBE, said: “The government needs the use of late payment to SMEs is considered the norm in ours and other industries. to give serious consideration to refusing any public sector contract to big businesses who “It's wrong that SMEs are expected to continue don’t pay suppliers in an acceptable time to provide services and complete the work they frame. Or indeed only work with those are contracted to do and then have to wait as companies who’ve signed the Prompt the larger, more powerful, companies use Payment Code. every tactic in the book to avoid paying in the agreed timeframe. “With more than £300b of capital spending announced in the recent spending review, this “Having said that, as a result of the inquiry, I would have maximum effect at no cost to the have been having very positive discussions government, but really help in the battle with some of my larger clients and we are against poor payment practices so widespread talking about how we can address, and avoid, in the UK economy these days.” some of the issues raised.” Steve Sutherland, Chairman of Dortech The Specialist Engineering Contractors (SEC) Architectural Systems Limited, who appeared Group, which represents 60,000 firms before the inquiry on the SME panel, says: employing over 300,000 people through 6 “The last twelve months have been the worst trade associations*, the largest element (by in my 45 working years. value) of UK construction, has also come out in support of the inquiry’s report. “I have watched in disbelief as a tough market has driven major companies’ boards of Professor Rudi Klein, Chief Executive of the directors to turn a blind eye to malpractice SEC Group, said he was very impressed by within their businesses and the resultant Debbie Abrahams: “She is clearly committed destruction of essential supply chain support, to addressing this cancer of payment abuse skills and entrepreneurialism on which the UK that is currently pushing thousands of firms in depends. the construction industry towards insolvency. “This excellent broad based, balanced research, “Small construction firms in her constituency and investigation now provides the basis and and throughout the UK will take heart from opportunity to bring about the critical first her Be Fair – Pay on Time campaign and the steps of change, if Government and the lead she has taken in driving forward this late directors of companies have the courage to payment inquiry into the issue.” embrace and implement the *The Specialist Engineering Contractors (SEC) recommendations. Group represents 6 trade associations: “The recommendations and the spirit of the recommendations could be implemented with minimal cost and legislation and reflect a sensible first step to bringing some ethical common sense back to the market. “I shudder to think what will happen to the UK construction industry and build quality if the

Plumbing and Heating Contractors Alliance British Constructional Steelwork AssociationElectrical Contractors’ Association Building & Engineering Services Association Lift and Escalator Industry Association ELECT (Electrical Contractors’ Association for Scotland).

Marketing Stockport’s new football event kicks off Starkey Laboratories were clearly on premier form as they stormed home worthy winners of the inaugural Marketing Stockport Business 5-a-side cup with a glorious win over finalists Direct Marketing & Data Specialists, LBM. 19 Stockport based teams, and members of Marketing Stockport, kicked off on the revolutionary 3G pitches at LifeLEISURE’s Stockport Sports Village, with a guest team – Mid-City Lions from Atlanta - stepping up to the centre circle at the last minute. Not even the evening’s torrential downpour could dampen the spirits of the 100-plus players who all performed with enthusiasm and determination representing diverse businesses across the area. Leemic, joint sponsors of the competition, presented trophies to the night’s Top Scorer, Tom Greally (LBM) while the accolade of Player of the Competition, was awarded to Starkey’s Warren Gaskin.

Helen White, of Marketing Stockport, delighted with the inaugural event, said: “This has been a fantastic evening - despite the weather. “The facilities at Stockport Sports Village are second to none: from the 3G pitches right through to the hospitality provided by Tribourne Catering Services. We have to thank Rob Clare for organising the 1st Marketing Stockport 5 a-side tournament, to Leemic for their support and to all the teams for taking part.” Next year Starkey will be defending their new title on what Marketing Stockport hopes may be a more seasonally summer evening.

Airport personal skills initiative gets thumbs-up from students Manchester Airport recently played host to a series of five, free, one-day events in the Concorde Hanger for 1000 students. Attended by 30 high schools, including: Manchester Enterprise Academy (MEA), Newall Green and the Health Academy, the events were a huge success with an overwhelming number of students marking them as ‘good’ or better, and in some cases… ‘AMAZING!’ Across June and July, the students, all aged 14-15, had the opportunity to join the High Flyers Academy and to be virtual Airport Management for the day. They also responded to roles within engineering, motor transport, working with the airfield team, electricity supply, environment, retail and the fire service - as well as engaging with major customer service and airfield challenges. Wendy Sinfield, Community Relations Manager, said: “The events’ aims were to stimulate minds and imaginations, while working alongside real Manchester Airport employees to learn about what working in such an environment is really like. “The experience was designed to embed core curriculum knowledge, essential life skills and to introduce students to an interactive range of opportunities to learn more about employability options within the airport environment. “Teachers recognised the events as an invaluable and unique way to give students real insights into exploiting their personal talents and abilities.” The initiatives were supported by students from Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU), who assisted more than 100 airport volunteers in hosting the events, working alongside the M.A.G careers team, Stockport College and UExplore, to host professional developments opportunities for teachers that ran alongside these events. The events were funded by the Employer Ownership of Skills grant, recently awarded to Manchester Airport.


Picture credit: Mark Waugh (

Manchester announces ambitious target for new homes

Cllr Jim Battle, Deputy Leader of Manchester City Council, visiting an empty home project in Clayton, East Manchester.

Manchester has set out an ambitious strategy to accelerate home building to handle a projected surge in population in the next 15 years. Population growth projections suggest the need for 55,000 new homes by 2027, with early estimates suggesting that 5,000 new homes could be delivered in the next three years – and 13,000 new homes up to 2019. The home building strategy - dubbed the Residential Growth Perspectus - has set out the city’s intentions for residential growth as the fastest growing city in the UK – and the largest engine of growth outside London and the South East. The response to this expected growth will stimulate and encourage high quality new home building across the city, working in close partnership with private developers, social landlords and housing providers, to deliver a mix of tenures to supply the full range of markets and budgets. New home building also brings employment benefits, providing myriad jobs, apprenticeships and education opportunities for Manchester people. It is thought that for every new home built, five new jobs are created – not including any further employment not directly linked to construction – which means more than 25,000 new job opportunities could be created in Manchester in the next 3 years. This strategy will be based on six key areas: 1. Building more new homes – more high quality homes for sale and rent to meet future demand. 28

2. Creating pathways to home ownership – deliver more homes with mortgage products people can afford, putting their foot on their housing ladder and enabling them to play a bigger role in the city’s economy. 3. Developing a quality private rented sector – good quality, well managed accommodation. An important sector, accounting for more than half of the economically active households in the city centre and fringe. 4. Bringing empty homes back into use – put life back into the city’s empty properties. 5. Planning frameworks to support growth – ensure the city’s planning policies encourage and support residential growth. 6. A strong sense of place – develop sustainable neighbourhoods and communities that are more than just housing, but a mix of facilities and good management that will attract new families and residents. Manchester City Council launched its own innovative approach to home building through the Housing Investment Model last year, but this strategy looks to engage with investors to target suitable sites and attract new and trusted developers to drive residential growth.

Partnership working with developers and housing providers ensures each new home building scheme delivers the types and tenures required for each particular community area, supplying homes across a mix of price markets and catering for the full range of customers – including homes for social rent, affordable homes, private rented sector properties and owner occupiers. The strategy will also continue to explore different approaches to home buying – such as the Manchester Mortgage – to support potential buyers towards the aspiration of home ownership. Cllr Jim Battle, Deputy Leader of Manchester City Council, said: “Manchester’s strategy is about building new homes and creating jobs. We need to act now to meet demand for the future and to do this we need to stimulate investment in building and bring empty homes back into use. "The plan is also about creating financial packages that allows households into owner occupation. We believe this combination will not only create homes and neighbourhoods, but jobs, training opportunities and a huge economic boost for our city, "The plan is ambitious but in Manchester we have the skills and experience to deliver a strategy that will secure Manchester in poll position as an economic driver for the UK.”

Manchester City Council signs declaration on tobacco control Manchester City Council has signed up to the Local Authority Declaration on Tobacco Control at Full Council (10 July 2013). The public health-led charter is a statement of intent from the council to do all in its power to take action to reduce smoking rates among its communities as well as highlighting the harm that smoking causes. Councillor Paul Andrews, Executive Member for adults, health and well-being at Manchester City Council, said: “Since public health returned to local authority control, it is our responsibility to do all that we can to tackle smoking and to work with our partners to promote healthy living choices for the health and well being of our residents. “Because we have signed up to this declaration, we are making a clear commitment to tackle the harmful effects of tobacco and we will work with our partners to try to make headway in tackling this epidemic.” Manchester spends in the region of £1m per year on tobacco control, almost all of this through commissioning the Stop

Smoking Service and Tobacco Free Futures, a North West organisation that runs campaigns on a regional basis.

30%, compared with 22% in England, and over twice the rate of the lowest smoking districts.

David Regan, Director of Public Health for Manchester, said: “Smoking is the single greatest cause of premature death and disease and we welcome this opportunity to lead local action to tackle smoking in our communities.”

Manchester-based Tobacco Free Futures, has been working with partners to develop the declaration.

Every year in England, more than 80,000 people die from smoking related disease and in Manchester, the local estimate of deaths is 825 per year - this is the highest rate of smoking attributable mortality in England (372/100,000 population compared with 211/100,000 in England as a whole). Manchester also has one of the highest smoking rates in the country, estimated at

Chief Executive Andrea Crossfield said: “It’s really pleasing to see such strong support for a public commitment to tackling tobacco harms as it’s one of the most important actions a local authority can take to create stronger and healthier communities. “We’ve made good progress to bring smoking rates down and cut the number of young people taking up a habit which kills half of long term smokers. There’s still a long way to go, though, as every six seconds in the UK, somebody dies from a tobacco-related disease.”

Northenden Business Association signs up two more The Northenden Business Association (NBA), welcomed two new members in July: Barclays Bank and Luxi-Walkers 24 Hour Private Hire. The Association is now also a statutory consultee on planning applications in the Northenden area, giving business a voice in how the ward develops. Gunjan Bolton, of Barclays, said: “We were delighted when Wythenshawe Regeneration Team invited us to join the Association, we are keen to involve ourselves in all areas with the local community and this gives us a chance to meet local traders and help Northenden to grow and prosper.” And Gunjan and her team were happy to jump straight in and help with an event being held at Parkway Green House, Northenden. Delivered by BW3 (Business Working With Wythenshawe),the aim was to give the young people from year 9, at Newall Green High School, the opportunity to meet with local businesses, undertake training in applying for jobs and even to sit mock interviews. “The Barclays team were keen to help out in any way and they involved themselves in many of the sessions which the young people attended - we can't wait to work with them again,” said Stephen Walsh, a member of the Wythenshawe Regeneration Team and Secretary of the NBA. For further information about BW3 contact Bob Bell on 07734 342 632 or go to

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Manchester City team up with leading Asia brand GS Battery Manchester City Football Club has entered a new partnership with Thailand’s leading car battery brand, GS Battery. Building on recent commercial successes in the region, the deal will see the Japanese manufacturer of automobile and motorcycle batteries become the Club’s Official Car Battery Partner for Thailand.Tom Glick, Chief Commercial & Operating Officer for Manchester City, said: “GS Battery’s reputation for technological research and development speaks for itself. “Their hallmark for perfection and achievements worldwide over the last century are well documented and to partner with such an iconic brand in Asia is not only an honor for City, but also a statement of intent, as we continue to build a global Club of the future.

across Thailand.” This sentiment was shared by Mr Prakasit Pornprapar, Executive Director of Siam GS Sales Co Ltd, who added: “Manchester City is internationally recognised as a football club for the new generation of football fans. “Within a short period of time, they have already gathered over 2.3 million supporters in Thailand. Our partnership with City will not only help create a new era in Thailand’s football development, but also simultaneously enable GS Battery to broaden its brand awareness and build confidence in our products, for both existing and new customers.

“We are striving to build a high performing football club to be enjoyed by our growing fan base around the world, whereas GS Battery also strives for continuous technological and environmental advancement in order to develop the highest quality products for its customers.

“Through supporting our local football industry by sponsoring the Thai Premier League and Division 2, and partnering with Manchester City, it is hoped GS Battery will help raise the international standard of our local game, while helping to create opportunities for Thais to one day enter world football in the near future.”

“This shared vision will allow both organisations to passionately deliver a more exciting football experience for fans

Under the deal, GS Battery will film a TV advert with City players, to be aired on TVs in homes across the country’s 69 million-

strong population. In addition, GS Battery will also be activating its partnership using City’s crest and player imagery on packaging, POS and marketing material throughout their vast sales networks, across Thailand. Established in 1885, GS Battery was the first to invent and produce the lead-acid storage battery changing the battery industry forever. In addition to car batteries, GS also manufacture power supply systems and lighting equipment from their 28 factories in 14 different countries.

Stockport welcomes £½ million boost for empty homes Stockport is set to receive £508,000 of government funding to bring empty homes back into use.The government announced that £91m - including £8m in Greater Manchester - is being invested in England to refurbish and bring back into use over 6,000 empty and derelict homes and commercial premises. The funding in Stockport will be spent on purchasing and refurbishing empty homes which are found across the borough. Stockport Council, working closely with Stockport Homes and Equity Housing Group, has already brought 16 homes back into use through the first phase of this programme. Councillor Sue Derbyshire, Leader of Stockport Council, said: “This is great news for communities in Stockport. “The Council has been working very hard, together with our partners, to provide more affordable and high-quality housing across the borough. We have already successfully brought a number of properties back into use through this scheme. “This additional funding will help us to identify more empty homes and work with our housing partners to refurbish them, bringing them back to the market as affordable homes for local families.”


Ricky Hatton joins students at new Boxing Academy Legendary Manchester boxer, Ricky Hatton, joined staff and students from The Manchester College at the launch of a new Boxing Academy. The facility will give talented local boxers the chance to fulfil their potential, together with gaining a recognised sports’ qualification. Working in partnership with students’ own local boxing clubs, the Academy will give students the opportunity to develop their skills and talent while improving their understanding of the sport. Former boxer, Ricky Hatton, said: “This is a fantastic opportunity for the young people of Manchester and I’m delighted to meet everyone involved. “The training and support I had when I started out in Manchester was fantastic, and moulded me into a professional boxer. There is some great talent here already, and having access to the Academy will only strengthen their skills and develop them not only as a boxer, but as a professional in the sporting world.” The Academy students will not only learn and develop as boxers, but as individuals. Alongside high quality boxing training, the students will study for a nationally recognised sports qualification under the guidance and support of The Manchester College - the largest General Further Education College in the UK and Europe allowing them to develop academically and socially, preparing them for a future career within the sports industry. Paul Bright, Head of Sports Academy at The Manchester College, said: “This is a fantastic opportunity for young people across Manchester to develop their skills

and gain academic qualifications. “The focus of the Academy is very much on the individual, with students choosing a qualification to suit their personal needs and goals. The College will provide guidance and support to every student, preparing them for whatever path they decide to take on leaving the Academy.” Students will have access to sports therapists, strength and conditioning coaches, and are given top class care in every area related to elite performance. The training and study the students undertake will develop skills beyond their boxing talents, gaining knowledge in areas such as health, diet and nutrition and fitness, an all-round growth and development, which will make them wellrounded, disciplined individuals. The Boxing Academy will open its doors to

students in September 2013. Training will be delivered at the specialised boxing centre at The Factory Youth Zone in Harpurhey, with the sports qualifications taught at The Manchester College’s North Manchester Sixth Form Campus, giving potential students from all across Manchester access to the Academy. Teresa Farran, Vice Principal of The Manchester College, said: “The Boxing Academy will provide excellent opportunities for local young people to develop their skills and prepare them for their future careers, whether that is in boxing itself or the wider sports arena. “The students will be offered a platform to make the most of their boxing talent, while also being given the chance to access highquality, targeted educational support from The Manchester College.”

Sushi at Umezushi Mirabel Street Manchester's Martial Arts Dynasty - Vann Dang Martial Arts - home to an 8th generation dynasty originating in Okinawa in the 1720s... Manchester's best Japanese restaurant - thus far... Live Ikebana demonstrations in Castlefiled… what Mancunians think of when they think of Japan…


Nigel Wilson, Chief Executive, WCHG; Luke and Sienna Hesketh; Tony Roden, Executive Director of Property, WCHG.

Home sweet home for new Hollyview residents It’s ‘home sweet home’ for Luke Hesketh and his two year old daughter, Sienna, as they became the first residents to move into Wythenshawe Community Housing Group’s new shared ownership homes at Hollyview, on Hollyhedge Road/Rotherby Road. Luke, a single dad who shares childcare for his daughter, is a local lad from Wythenshawe, having been to St John’s R.C. Primary School and St. Paul’s R.C. High School, and now works as a care worker at a residential home in Wythenshawe. His parents live just around the corner from the Hollyview development, so when he saw the houses being built, he was intrigued to find out more about shared ownership. He was the first person in the queue when the Show Home opened and was delighted to find out that he was eligible for the scheme. As Luke explains: “I had been saving up for a deposit to buy a house with my partner, but when we split up a year or so ago, I didn’t

quite have the money to buy a house on my own. “With the shared ownership scheme, I have been able to organise a mortgage for 45% and I pay rent for the remaining 55%. I had been in a privately rented, two-bed flat before this, paying more in rent than I am in total now for my new home, so this is just perfect for me. “The sales team have looked after me every step of the way, and the standard of design and attention to detail in the homes is fantastic – even down to the washing line and garden shed.” Nigel Wilson, Chief Executive of Wythenshawe Community Housing Group

(WCHG), the newly-formed, parent company for Willow Park and Parkway Green, was delighted to welcome Luke and his daughter to their new home. Nigel said: “Shared Ownership is a fantastic option for people who need a helping hand to get onto the property ladder. We are delighted that this has worked out so well for Luke and would urge anyone in a similar position to visit our Show Home and see if this is an option that could work for them.” The Hollyview Show Home is open between 10am and 5pm each weekend, just opposite Asda on Hollyhedge Road. Call the Sales team on 0800 731 4327 or visit website on

Mr Darcy takes to the water once more A giant statue paying homage to Jane Austen’s romantic hero, Mr Darcy, has been unveiled at Lyme Park, in Cheshire. The 12ft sculpture recalls the dramatic scene that set viewers’ hearts racing in the BBC's adaptation, which was recently named the most memorable British TV drama moment of all time. The model, which was specially commissioned to celebrate the launch of UKTV’s new TV channel Drama, marks the iconic scene from the 1995 TV adaptation of Jane Austen’s acclaimed 19th-century novel Pride and Prejudice, which was published 200 years ago in 1813. It will remain in place in the lake at Lyme Park until February 2014. 32

Cardinal Maritime makes special delivery to Haveley Hey Junior School Wythenshawe-based freight logistics company Cardinal Maritime Group, has again delivered the goods to a local school by donating £2000 to enable pupils and their families to visit London. Over recent years, the Cardinal Trust has supported Haveley Hey, in providing financial assistance to their child residential programme.

sector, were the first operator to introduce an online freight pricing tool: the FREIGHTcalculator.™

The programme is designed to fund holidays and recreational activities for children within the school and local area, and is a scheme close to the heart of ‘The Captain’, Cardinal’s figurehead and company benefactor. Chris Bartram, Marketing Executive, said, “Cardinal Maritime has a close association with the school – a number of our employees having attended there - and we are pleased to help. “We recruit staff locally, whenever possible, and have an ongoing programme of introducing local students to the company through open days and workshops, and have identified a large pool of talent within the area. “We’d like to thank local MP, Paul Goggins, for taking time out to attend the presentation of the cheque to the school, and the staff and children who were on hand to receive it.” Cardinal Maritime, one of the world’s fastest growing global consolidators and innovative pioneers of the freight consolidation

Manchester Hospital School and Home Teaching Service ‘Outstanding’ Manchester Hospital School and Home Teaching Service, based at Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital, has been declared ‘Outstanding’, scoring the highest grading in each Ofsted inspected area of school activity. Inspectors commented very positively on the leadership and management of the school, stating that ‘excellent teamwork under the inspirational leadership of the exceptional headteacher, underpins the effectiveness of this highly successful school.’ The achievement is even more impressive as the rating was achieved under Ofsted’s new tougher and more challenging inspection framework, under which it has become even more difficult to achieve an ‘outstanding’ judgement. The report highlights the quality of teaching at the school. Inspectors noted that ‘teaching is never less than consistently good and much of it is outstanding. At the heart of this strong teaching is the sensitivity to be able to separate the educational needs of each student from their health issues and to adapt their teaching quickly and effectively in the face of changing needs. As a result, students’ achievement is outstanding’. It also recognises that ‘teachers make learning very relevant and enjoyable’ and that ‘excellent use is made of highly skilled teaching assistants.

They also said of the school “Students work hard, concentrate well in lessons and their behaviour is almost always exemplary”. The inspectors praised the work of the Governing Body, acknowledging the fact that ‘the Governing Body has been integral to the process of maintaining a constant drive for improvement since the last inspection’. Headteacher, Sandra Hibbert, said: “I am delighted with the inspection report. This is a tremendous achievement, particularly under the new, more challenging framework, but it is one that the entire school community truly deserves. The report is a fantastic endorsement of the efforts made to provide the best possible educational opportunities for all pupils.” Alwyn Hughes, Director of the Children’s Hospital says: “This excellent news reinforces the enormous efforts of the school’s leadership team, governors, teaching and non teaching staff and pupils to relentlessly drive the school forward. The school is an essential part of our hospital and it’s important that our children’s educational needs are equally catered for alongside their clinical needs.” 33

Fruitful legacy for Wythenshawe on World Environment Day Real Food Wythenshawe, the lottery-funded project managed by Wythenshawe Community Housing Group to support local residents and community groups to grow, cook and eat their own food, has teamed up with Laing O’Rourke and partners to help create a ‘fruitful’ legacy as part of this year’s World Environment Day. and The Crossacres Cultivators - a gardening group at a local Age Concern community centre for over 60s.

Laing O’Rourke and partners, working on the MPT Manchester Metrolink, have donated 25 fruit trees to the project – providing an excellent tie-in with the “Think. Eat. Save” ethos of this year’s World Environment Day. It also has particular historical relevance for Wythenshawe - as explained by their Environmental Manager, Andy Campuzano.

Jacqueline Naraynsingh, Real Food Programme Manager for Wythenshawe Community Housing Group, said the local groups were ecstatic with the trees, and particularly pleased with the 70 tonnes of top soil and extra compost that were also delivered.

“When Wythenshawe was originally built in the 1930s,” said Andy, “the aspiration was to be a garden city and every house built had a fruit tree in the garden.

“MPT have been absolutely fantastic, and the community groups have been blown away by their kindness and generosity.” said Jacqueline.

“We thought it would be a good idea to donate the fruit trees, as a positive environmental gesture, but one with a definite nod to the area’s local history.”

“These groups do fantastic work to teach people the value of eating healthily and sustainably, so it’s great that their members and the local community will be able to help themselves to fresh fruit from their trees.”

The fruit trees, with the help of local landscapers Ground Control, have been planted across community groups in Wythenshawe, including The Young People’s Support Foundation, Macmillan Cancer Research’s volunteer centre at Wythenshawe hospital, the offices of Wythenshawe Community Housing Group, The Dandelion Community – a gardening group run at a local church

Anyone wanting to find out more, and get involved with the Real Food Wythenshawe campaign, should contact Jacqueline Naraynsingh on 0161 946 7554.

To Advertise in the next issue of Lift-Off Magazine, please call 0161 945 6015 or email for further information. 34

Adrian nails highly commended spot in VQ Learner of the Year awards The Manchester College student, Adrian Wetton, has been highly commended in the VQ (Vocational Qualifications) Learner of the Year Awards. Skills Minister Matthew Hancock MP, presented Adrian with a certificate to mark his achievement at the high-profile national awards, at Portcullis House in Westminster, London.

succeed in today’s job market. “During his time at College, Adrian has proved himself to be a very competent student, developing the skills which have set him on road to success and we are delighted to be celebrating his achievements.”

The awards mark outstanding achievement by vocational students, with Adrian commended in the North West region for his success in gaining a Level 2 Diploma Carpentry and Joinery qualification with Distinction, the highest achievable grade. The Manchester College and Lovell Altrincham-based national housing specialist whom Adrian is a trainee carpenter with - nominated him for the award. Paul Woby, Lovell Craft Trainee Supervisor, said: “Adrian has shown exceptional skills and maturity beyond his age, demonstrated by his commitment to learning and high level of interaction in class and the top grade he secured in his Diploma.

This is Adrian’s second major award achievement this year. It comes after Lovell named him the company’s Apprentice of the Year in the North West, earlier in 2013. “He has amazed us all by constantly pushing his boundaries to fulfil his potential, showing great team working skills and a hunger for new knowledge.” Maggie Karwat, Head of The Manchester College’s Wythenshawe Campus, where Adrian studied, said: “Providing young people with technical, practical and vocational learning has never been more important, giving them opportunities to

Adrian said: “Gaining my apprenticeship with Lovell has made a major difference for my career and really opened doors. “I’ve gone from never having worked on site… to getting the chance to develop a wide range of joinery skills and build up my technical knowledge, and acquiring my Diploma Level 2 Qualification - together with a great deal of invaluable practical experience.”

Haveley Hey pupils reach for the stars Youngsters at Haveley Hey Community School, Wythenshawe, were given an unexpected lift when a rocket was launched from within the school’s grounds. And not only were the pupils allowed to watch the take-off, one lucky little girl was chosen to press the launch button that sent the projectile skywards. Steve Bennett, CEO of Starchaser Industries Ltd, a privately held, high technology group of companies that specialises in the development, operation and commercialisation of space related products and services, took time out from his busy schedule to show the kids a scaled-down demonstration of the company’s pioneering work. “Starchaser Industries enables new space-related business opportunities by providing safe, reliable, affordable and reusable access to space for both the space tourism and micro-satellite launch markets,” explained Steve. “Starchaser Industries UK has been one of, possibly the only, European space tourism related company to achieve significant private venture investment and significant commercial sponsorship which has funded real development and tests of technology - rather than paper studies that are the hallmark of the less mature companies trying to establish a presence in this market.” Founded in 1992 by Steve, Starchaser Industries is staffed by a highly skilled, innovative and motivated workforce, dedicated to furthering space exploration opportunities. For corporate sponsorship/partnering opportunities, please visit: for further details. 35

Barratt Homes helping people onto the property ladder Barratt, Manchester, is celebrating after its 200th FirstBuy sale was completed, making them the first Barratt division to reach this figure. The completion of the sale of a house on The Woodlands at Buckshaw Village, Chorley, marks the 200th sale that Barratt Manchester has dealt with using FirstBuy.

“Buckshaw Village has such a nice reputation, and The Woodlands is so secluded and private. We’ve spoken to friends who are looking to buy houses and we have told them that they should definitely look into FirstBuy.

Neil Goodwin, Managing Director of Barratt Manchester, said: “This is a massive achievement for Barratt in this Division and it is testament to the work of our sales advisers who have been able to advise home buyers and tell them the ways to get onto the property ladder that will suit them. “FirstBuy, was a great way for first time buyers to get onto the property ladder, and we are delighted that 200 people using the scheme have chosen Barratt Homes as the first home they buy.” FirstBuy, was a Government scheme to help people get on the housing ladder. With FirstBuy, people could buy their own home for as little as 80% of the value. People were eligible if they had a household income of £60,000 or less, weren’t a home owner, and couldn’t afford to buy a home. The 200th completion has now been completed, enabling a young woman to buy her first home on The Woodlands development in Buckshaw Village, Chorley.

“Barratt gave us amazing customer service, they offered us so much more than any of the other house builders we visited. We couldn’t have asked for more.”

Nigel Wilson, Chief Executive, WCHG; Luke and Sienna Hesketh; Tony Roden, Executive Director of Property, WCHG.

Gemma Pond, the 200th FirstBuy customer, said: “FirstBuy made it so much easier for us. Without it we would have had to go for something smaller that we weren’t happy with and we would have wanted to move again in a couple of years. “But using FirstBuy, everything has worked out so well. We only started looking in March but as soon as we saw this house on this development, we knew that we wanted it.” Gemma, who moved in to the house with her partner, Michael Godfrey, added:

Carl Brennan and Leonie Shorrock are another couple who have recently moved in to a house on The Avenue, using the FirstBuy scheme. Carl said: “It is our dream home and it would not have been possible for us to get the house without using First Buy. We love the new house and are over the moon with the service that we got through the whole process.” The FirstBuy scheme has now been replaced by Help to Buy. The Government loans purchasers up to 20% of the cost of a newbuild home, so they need only a 5% deposit - and a 75% mortgage to make up the rest. The scheme is available for existing homeowners - as well as first time buyers - but is only available for new build properties.

Ted Christopher – taking the music further For most people, with the sun-screen bottles still languishing in the bottom of holiday suitcases, sand-coated thongs consigned to the washing machine and tans still fresh, the last thing on most sane minds is Christmas. But Ted Christopher, one of Scotland's finest, traditional – and contemporary - music performers, is again preparing to take his particular brand of entertainment ‘south of the border’, as corporate party and event organisers look at booking entertainment for the forthcoming ‘festive season’. A well-travelled and extremely versatile singer songwriter, he is equally at home singing heart-felt originals to a concert audience, belting out some of his huge pop/rock repertoire to a packed dance floor, or entertaining smaller, more intimate gatherings, worldwide. Unphased by any size of audience - he played to 750,000 people on The Mall in Washington DC; yet a week later, there were merely a dozen music buffs gathered in Cowie Miners Welfare and they were both great gigs. Ted, said: “It’s all about tailoring performances to a particular audience. “What works for a large corporate event, doesn’t necessarily transfer to weddings or other family celebrations and events. It’s about giving people a good time, by encouraging them not 36

merely to observe, but to engage and participate in a performance.” Ted has been involved in the Scottish live music scene since he was 15. He is proud to be a native of The Royal and Ancient Burgh of Stirling (now a city but he much prefers the previous description of his hometown), and was born and raised a mere claymore’s length from Stirling Castle and The National Wallace Monument. Ted performs many solo gigs, sometimes utilising a couple of hugely experienced, ‘journeyman’ musicians as “The Ted Christopher Band”, while also fronting the Scottish legends band, that is “Bannockburn”. For booking details and availability: Tel: 0(44) 1786 471323 or Website:

Wythenshawe school is first in UK to scoop Children’s Food Trust Award A Manchester Academy has become the first school in the country to receive a new national award for excellence in children’s food. The Manchester Health Academy (MHA), based in Wythenshawe, has become one of the first in the UK to receive a new national award for excellence in children’s food and nutrition. The award is given only to schools and childcare providers who can show how they are championing healthy eating and nutrition for children. The MHA has achieved the Children’s Food Trust Award, a new accreditation scheme to help schools and early years settings show parents their commitment to helping children eat well, launched by the charity in March. The award comes after practices and menus, delivered by Manchester City Council’s catering arm, Manchester Fayre, were positively assessed by the Trust. It means that the Academy has met tough criteria on their food policy, menus, the dining experience children have, staff training, giving children opportunities to learn to cook - and how actively staff encourage children to eat healthily. Helen Walker, Health/Humanities Curriculum leader, MHA, said: “We make sure that our students are equipped for the future by emphasising the importance of a healthy lifestyle. “We work closely with our lead sponsor, the Central Manchester University Hospitals Foundation Trust, to embed health across the curriculum. We are delighted to report that the MHA is the first Academy in the country to be awarded the new Children’s Food Trust Award.” Councillor Jeff Smith, Executive Member for Finance and Human Resources, said: “This is wonderful news for MHA students and their parents. We are very proud that the first school in the country to attain this award is from Manchester. “In partnership with the dedicated staff at the Academy, Manchester Fayre work very hard to ensure that students are provided with healthy, tasty, food choices at lunchtimes - and this award comes as welcome recognition of our success.” Linda Cregan, Chief Executive of Children’s Food Trust, said: “Anyone can say that they provide good food for children, but do they really deliver?

“Parents so often ask what they should be looking for in the meals that their school provides, and on their approach to helping children learn about food. This award is a way to spot those who really are doing a fantastic job on food, and the reassurance that they have the thumbs-up from our experts. “MHA sets a great example – congratulations to the whole team.” The Academy can now use the award logo, will be named on the Children’s Food Trust website and has access to information, news and resources throughout the year to help them maintain high food and drink standards. Rob Rees MBE, professional chef and Chair of the Children’s Food Trust, said: “When parents are choosing a school or nursery, we always want to know what the foods like. We want to know our kids will be getting great food and that they’ll be encouraged to eat well. “This award gives parents that peace of mind. It’s a clear sign that children are getting a great foundation for a healthy start and the Manchester Health Academy sets a great example. Congratulations to the whole team, we’re delighted to welcome you on board as one of our first award winners in Manchester.” The award is open to any school or childcare provider. For more information visit: 37

The Accountant's Clinic FREE Readers' Service As a service for Lift-Off! readers, a well-established and respected practice of Chartered and Management Accountants, Nabarro Poole, will address a small selection of questions raised by our readership.

Bad debt relief… Q

I am on the Flat Rate Scheme for VAT and use the cash received method. I have written off a bad debt of £12,000 inclusive of VAT. How do I claim bad debt relief?

Many businesses, using the Flat Rate Scheme with the cash-based turnover method, assume that it isn’t possible to claim bad debt relief because, if the customer hasn’t paid them, then no VAT has been paid to HMRC. This is not correct, as relief can be claimed for the difference between the VAT on the sales invoice and the VAT that would have been due, at the Flat Rate percentage.



The Flat Rate percentage takes into account the input tax that the business would have been entitled to if the customer had paid. VAT at 20% on the original invoice, would have been £2,000. If we assume that your Flat Rate percentage is 15% then, if your customer had paid, the VAT due to HMRC would have been £1,800 (15% of £12,000). You can claim the difference of £200 as bad debt relief. This is done by entering it in box 4 of your VAT Return. Remember, that to qualify for relief, a bad debt must be more than 6 months’ overdue (but less than 4 years and 6 months) and have been written off in the accounts.

Nabarro Poole is a practice of chartered and management accountants, based in South Manchester, who offer a free initial discussion. If you have any business-related questions you’d like our financial experts to answer, please send them to: Whilst every care has been taken in answering readers’ enquiries, neither Lift-Off! Magazine, nor Nabarro Poole, can accept any liability or loss for actions that readers may sustain as a result of reading this column Specific circumstances can make a substantial difference and, as this information is simply for guidance, please ensure you take appropriate professional advice before acting on any specific matter.

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per annum (+ VAT)

Printed copy of Lift-Off! mailed to you each issue Priority given to Subscribers press releases FREE QUARTER PAGE ADVERT Lift-Off! magazine is produced to promote businesses in South Manchester, Airport City and Cheshire. We print and distribute 10,000 copies and e-copies are sent to more than 15,000 people. Lift-Off! magazine is the largest business publication in the area.


From the Bedroom to the Bank Account – Book Proves Work is the New Sex While few think of the office while steaming up the atmosphere in the bedroom, a compelling new book proves that the two settings are more closely linked than many would admit.

Aimed at those who’ve accepted the fact that they’ll likely be working ‘forever’, Avril Millar’s ground-breaking guide transports confidence and success in the bedroom to a financially comfortable future.

covers and behind their desk,” says Millar.

work out if they’re getting enough!!”

“Sadly, we’ll always spend more hours working than having sex, but the concept I introduce in the book will make both a little more fun and fruitful.”

And even men are loving it! Simon Smith says: “You may think the book is aimed primarily at women, but it's just as enjoyable and enlightening for men. A lot of the principles are just as applicable to our own professional lives. As for those that aren't, they at least arm us with some greater knowledge of how the female mind works, which is no bad thing.”

‘The Kama Sutra of Work: Why Work is the New Sex and How to Make Sure You're Getting Enough’ sheds light on a unconventional yet wholly plausible concept that could make any morning just as enjoyable as the night before.

And Giles Mountford got into the swing pretty fast too: “Avril Millar has written a book that, when you read it, you're left wondering why it took so long for someone to state the refreshingly obvious - most of us have two obsessions in life; success and sex. (Or is that one obsession?) And it's about time we used each to learn about the other…..Think of it as Radio Four's 'Thought for the Day' or Forbes on Flipboard. But with lots more tits and ass.”

Synopsis: What would you do if you thought you would have to work - and make your own money - forever? You probably will. Because, most likely your pension will barely feed a mouse and your knight in shining armour may not materialise. Women are going to have to redefine work to fit with long, varied lives. We will have to create our own security. Fortunately, we're well equipped to do just that. We're flexible, capable and more multi-talented than we know. We just need to learn how to unearth and exploit our talents, how to succeed in the changing world of work and how to make new work - and get paid - when we need it. More than ever, we're surrounded by sex: on the TV, the Internet, at the movies, in magazines, on a billboard near you. We swim in a sea of sexual images, words and references. And we are more in control of our sex lives and sexual pleasure than ever before. We know how to call the shots in sex. So what if you could use the language of sex to inspire you to create a range of work you'll love for a lifetime that will also make you happy, secure and independent? The Kama Sutra of Work will open your eyes to the possibilities of great work that you've never thought of. From 'Oral' to 'Happy Endings', work (and sex) will never seem quite the same again. As the author explains, many people’s sex and working lives are already closely tied. “Most of us apply the same language in the bedroom as we do to our work, we just don’t realise it! After reading my book the similarities will be clear, allowing anyone to exploit them for more fun under the

Readers have nothing but praise. “If you know you want to create value, create work and have a more playful and fulfilling life, this book is for you. But don't expect a wishy-washy, life is perfect, all-will-justcome-your-way approach, or for that matter, don’t expect the usual 'the cards are stacked against you because you are a woman.” There's no time for that in this book. This is a hilarious read that mixes wisdom and self-awareness into a recipe of hard work, tough love and much needed light heartedness on the issues of woman, work, sex and getting down to business.” says KL Hauck, who reviewed the book on Amazon. Rachel Sillett was equally as impressed, adding, “Really enjoyed this read. In parts I was laughing out loud when recalling some of my work experiences and the language I've used!! Very refreshing and clever. Will be recommending this book to my girlfriends in business so they too can

Stimulating, titillating, enriching and often challenging, this book offers everything you might hope from a Kama Sutra. Drawing on a rich seam of sexually related experiences and observations, Millar has managed to tread the delicate line between humour & gravitas, fantasy and reality to produce a 'self-help' book that adds a whole new dimension to the genre. It's direct, succinct and each chapter comes with a bit-sized 'sutra' at the end. It's less self-help, more selfenlightenment written in a unique and engaging style and has set me upon the road to getting more of both. ‘The Kama Sutra of Work: Why Work is the New Sex and How to Make Sure You're Getting Enough’ is available now: For more information, visit the author’s official website: ISBN-10: 095689772X ISBN-13: 978-0956897725 For a chance of winning a copy of the book, please answer the following question: which Australian feminist icon, wrote The Female Eunuch? email: Entries must be received by 25 September, 2013. 39

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*Calls to 0800 numbers are free from BT landlines however charges may apply from other providers. Calls from mobile phones may also incur charges. Please note that your call may be recorded for our mutual security and also for training and quality purposes. Lines open 8am – 5pm Monday to Friday (excluding Bank Holidays). Membership is available to anyone over the age of 16 who is normally resident in the UK. Members can add family and friends to their membership regardless of their age. Some services have a six month qualifying period. Benenden health is a trading name of The Benenden Healthcare Society Limited which is an incorporated friendly society, registered under the Friendly societies Act 1992, registered number 480F. The Society’s contractual business (the provision of tuberculosis benefit) is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and Prudential Regulation Authority. The remainder of the Society’s business is undertaken on a discretionary basis. The Society is subject to Prudential Regulation Authority requirements for prudential management. No advice has been given. If in doubt as to the suitability of this product, you should seek independent advice. Registered Office: The Benenden Healthcare Society Limited, Holgate Park Drive, York, YO26 4GG. AD/LIFTOFF/SP5999/07.13/V1

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Business/community mag for Greater Manchester, Cheshire UK