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Flying the flag for Crewe See page 36

Road schemes drive forward change

College chief ‘In the Spotlight’

Safety first at show

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Page 13

Page 35

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Welcome to the Spring edition of the Chamber’s magazine Welcome to our South Cheshire Chamber’s 4FRONT magazine summer edition. The Chamber continues to be busy supporting and promoting the local business community. I meet with many businesses who are concerned about the future at this time of uncertainty and change, and all are clear that getting the best possible deal for the UK with the EU is of critical importance, yet these same businesses are much more concerned by key domestic issues. Business people are telling me about their problems with skill shortages, local infrastructure, rutted and potholed roads, and the need to improve mobile and digital connectivity. In relation to mobile and digital connectivity, as an Accredited Chamber we have been part of a British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) national survey which has found that half of businesses believe the UK’s phone network is more reliable than five years ago. This is clearly not good enough, and the Accredited Chamber Network in the UK has launched a ‘No More Not Spots’ campaign. The aim is to end not spots for voice coverage for UK phone users. If you know of areas of South Cheshire that are affecting your business please let us know (P.10).



As you will see in this edition we continue to be extremely busy. In the last quarter we have met with Bank of England officials, British Chambers of Commerce delegation and various departments at Cheshire East Council. These meetings help us to feedback the views of the business community and support local companies, while pushing for local regeneration that will provide economic growth which will benefit us all. This includes the arrival of HS2 to the area and the Crewe Masterplan. The Chamber will continue to grow and develop its support for businesses in South Cheshire and we will be doing our utmost to ensure the views of business are heard. I hope you enjoy this edition of 4FRONT and I encourage all Members to submit articles for future magazines to Remember that the Chamber Team is here to assist you and your business. Yours faithfully

Paul Colman Chief Executive @SCCCI_CEO

South Cheshire Chamber Patrons

The Chamber, or any of its agents/representatives/staff, cannot accept any legal liability for the accuracy of the news items and articles contained in the magazine, which have been obtained and are reproduced in good faith. The Chamber also reserves the right to edit articles submitted for publication or exclude them completely.

Meet the Chamber Team . . .

Paul Colman Chief Executive

Jon Barnes Operations Manager

Jacqui Morris International Trade Manager

Madeleine Abbey PA to Chief Executive

Lauren Readdin Events Administrator & Social Media Co-ordinator

Angela Wilkinson Membership Co-ordinator

Trevor Langston Crewe Pledge

Mark Waters Crewe Pledge


Richard Weilding South Cheshire Development Agency Development Loan Director

Daryl Williams Events Co-ordinator

Anne Xiourouppa Accounts

Dianne Parrish Business Connector Cheshire Connect

Erika Anskaityte Events/ Admin Intern

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Meet our new members . . . Direct Access Consultancy Ltd The Courtyard Shop, Regents Park, London Road Nantwich CW5 6LW 01270 368614

Richmond Village Nantwich St Josephs Way, London Road Nantwich CW5 5PH 01270 629 080 Cheshire Flat Pack 16 Smithers Close Nantwich CW5 7SP 07748 296614

PBX Petrochemical Ltd Suite 34, Edwin Foden Business Centre Moss Lane, Sandbach CW11 3AE 01606 833381 FJ Need Foods (Ornua) Spinneyfields Farm, Main Road Worleston, Nantwich CW5 6DN 01270 611112 Fast Deals Technology Ltd Coppenhall House Stable, Groby Road CreweCW1 4PE 07723 605624

L J @ Nantwich 5 Church Walk Nantwich CW5 5RG 01270 619889

Bowen Technique by Kathy Holly Cottage, London Road, Stapeley Nantwich CW5 7JU 07852 252001

A Drop Of What You Fancy Ltd 88 Apedale Road, Wood Lane Stoke on Trent ST7 8PH 07595 351302

Manor House Designs 36 Hospital Street Nantwich CW5 5RP 07976 894519

Helping Reach Potential The Hallowes, 14 Queens Road Old Colwyn, Colwyn bay LL29 9DH 01492 574525

Close Brothers Asset Management Ltd Nelson House, Gadbrook Road Northwich CW9 7TN 01606 810 100 Chillout Horsewear Ltd Old Turkey Farm Douglas Lane, Wettenhall Winsford CW7 4BH 01270 528096

Innovative Electrical Solutions Grange Yard, Grange Lane Winsford CW7 2BP 01606 533044

JJ’S Interiors 13a Welsh Row Nantwich CW5 5ED 07375 465331

OCJ Marketing Aston Court, Wrenbury Road Nantwich CW5 8DQ 07712 856562

Smart PA 12 Renaissance Way CreweCW1 6HT 07483 802225

Inotech Systems Ltd Unit 11, Wheelock Heath Business Court Alsager Road. Winterley, Sandbach CW11 4RQ 01270 753981

Team JB Wellness/Herbalife 7 Murrayfield Drive, Willaston Nantwich CW5 6QE 07875 444313 wellness@uwclub

Kapok Joinery Oakdene Avenue, Porthill Newcastle Under Lyme ST5 8HW 07790 216180

Libre Solutions Limited Heritage House, Heritage House 9b Hoghton Street, Southport PR9 0TE 07825 167019

Hidden Treasurez Hopley House, Nantwich Road Middlewich CW10 0LN 07801 030917

For more information on joining the Chamber contact Angela Wilkinson on 01270 445404 / If you would like a meeting with a member of the Chamber Team, please contact the Chamber on 01270 504700

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NEW MEMBERS / CHAMBER EVENTS Prospect Connect Europa House, Coppicemere Road Crewe Business Park CreweCW1 6GZ 0333 322 1103 Barony Lodge-Sanctuary Care Ltd Barony Lodge, Barony Road Nantwich CW5 5QS 01270 447395 The Think Pod Old Hall Stables, Brereton Park Sandbach CW11 1RY 01477 534432

Ravens Wood Consultancy 10 Guernsey Close Congleton CW12 3TL 07742 110018 Communications Plus Comms House, 167a Ormskirk Road Rainford, St Helens WA11 8HR 0800 987 8047 Sinceratis Ltd Yew Tree House, Malpas SY14 8BX 01244 953590 Equine Magnetix 181 Primrose Avenue Haslington, Crewe CW1 5QW 01270 584564

KEY Garden & Fencing Services 100 Hassall Road, Winterely Sandbach CW11 4RT 01270 750637 Wadeys Kitchen Wadeys Kitchen, Crewe CW2 7HD 01270 845444

For Advertising Sales and Articles please contact Jon Barnes: Telephone: 01270 445409 Email:

Summer Issue due out 10th August 2018 Editorial and Advertisement Deadline 30th July 2018

June Wednesday Nantwich Drop In Session Wednesday 20th June 2.30pm - 4.30pm Chamber Nantwich Office Cybersafe Forum Thursday 21st June 8am - 10am Ibis Styles Hotel

‘Final Friday’ at Everybody Sport & Recreation Friday 29th June 2018 9:00am - 11:00am

July Chamber Welcome Morning Friday 6th July 9.30am - 11am Manchester Metropolitan University

In the Know - The ‘Baby Boomers’ Aren’t Retiring Friday 12th July 8am - 10am Wychwood Park Hotel Speed Networking at Rookery Hall Monday 16th July 11.30am - 2.00pm Rookery Hall Hotel Local and Economic Update Thursday 19th July 8.00am - 10.00am Cheshire College, South and West

Pre-Nantwich Show Business Reception (Invitation Only) Tuesday 24th July 5.30pm - 7.30pm Dorfold Park For more information and event listings or if you wish to promote your own event please contact Lauren Readdin: or 01270 445408


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South Cheshire Chamber events programme

The 2018 calendar is in full swing with the popular ‘member’s favourite’ events in addition to some new events. If you would like guidance as to which events are best for you, please contact our events team. Chamber Welcome Mornings Held on the first Friday of the month (February to December) at the Chamber Office

Whether you are considering joining the Chamber, have been a member for some time or have new employees, the monthly Chamber Welcome Morning will help you get the most from your membership. This event is open to members and non -members

Welcome Wednesday drop in Held on Wednesday afternoons at our Nantwich Office

Whether you are considering joining the Chamber, have been a member for some time or have new employees, this informal monthly drop in will help you learn more about how the Chamber can help your business. This event is open to members and non-members

Final Friday Held on the last Friday of the month, 10 per year

Hosted by a Chamber member, this event offers great networking and regularly attracts over 50 different businesses. This event is open to members and non-members (by invitation)

Speed Networking Held quarterly

After piloting this event in 2017, Speed Networking events are now to be a regular feature of the Chamber events calendar. This structured lunchtime event for a maximum of 49 delegates enables you to meet all delegates in addition to offering guidance and tips on making the most of your membership. This event is open to members only

Local and Economic updates Held quarterly

Held in conjunction with Cheshire East, this event provides an opportunity for members to hear first -hand from a range of Local Authority representatives about local issues relevant to your business. In addition this event features an update on the latest British Chambers of Commerce Quarterly Economic Survey. This event is open to members only

International Trade Forums Held 3 times per year

With a range of expert speakers, this event provides an excellent source of information, knowledge and contacts for any business that is currently, or plans to, trade internationally. This event is open to members and non-members (by invitation)

Chamber Meet & Eat Held quarterly

Less structured than other Chamber networking events, this event is designed for members who find lunchtime networking more suited to their needs. This event is open to members and non- members

Young Persons Network Held quarterly, delivered in conjunction with The Crewe Pledge

An annual program specifically for young people in the early stages of their careers. Each session will include a development session on business skills relevant to the workplace and offer attendees and invaluable chance to network with their peers. New cohort starting September 2018.

In the Know Held 6 times per year

Delivered in conjunction with the expertise within Chamber member businesses, these events raise awareness of the challenges that many businesses face and signpost members to sources of further information and guidance they might otherwise be unaware of. This event is open to members only. If you have any suggestions of topics for future ‘in the know’ events, please send them through to our events team

In addition to the programme of regular events, plans are underway for a number of keynote events during 2018: July - Nantwich Pre-Show Business Reception

September - Autumn Lunch and AGM October - Annual Golf Day

November - Business Awards

December - Christmas Networking

We welcome your feedback and ideas for Chamber events. A short feedback questionnaire is available on and we would encourage you to complete this to assist us with event planning for 2018 and beyond

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Busy times for the Chamber

The meeting was chaired by the BCC national President Francis Martin from the Northern Ireland Chamber and was also attended by Adam Marshall, BCC Director General. The Assembly agreed on a number of key issues that the BCC should be focussing on, including; pressing for greater digital connectivity across the whole country; lobbying the Government to improve local transport connectivity and to encourage the development of a long-term integrated vision for infrastructure and the economy; involving business in detailed discussion on Brexit, especially on trade agreements; and developing a document to spell out “What Chambers Stand For.”

John Young, Agent for the Bank of England – North West Agency, Dr Gertjan Vlieghe, member of Monetary Policy Committee of the Bank of England, Shaun Cafferty, South Cheshire Chamber Chairman and John Dunning, South Cheshire Chamber President

During the past few months I was pleased to have had the opportunity to meet up with a few old colleagues and acquaintances at some important Chamber meetings. Firstly, it was good to meet up again with John Young who is the Bank of England’s North West Agent at a special meeting of the Panel which was recently held at Crewe Hall. John is a great supporter of the Chamber’s Bank of England Panel and greatly values the Panel meetings which he attends on a regular basis. The guest speaker was Dr Gertjan Vlieghe who has been a member of the Bank’s Monetary Policy Committee since 2015 and was formerly Economic Assistant to Governor Mervyn King. Dr Vlieghe gave an outline of the Banks views on the state of the economy and various scenarios on the impact of Brexit on the UK’s future economic prospects. He was also keen to hear how local companies were dealing with various issues around increasing wage pressures and recruitment.

Francis Martin, President of British Chambers of Commerce, John Dunning, South Cheshire Chamber President and Dr Adam Marshall, Director General of British Chambers of Commerce

Meanwhile, closer to home, the Chamber’s latest Business Council meeting was held at Reaseheath College where I was a Governor for many years. At the meeting, the Business Council agreed to step up the campaign for a fully integrated HS2 Hub Station at Crewe and to actively support the “Crewe Renaissance, Regeneration and Rejuvenation” project being developed by Crewe Town Council. These are certainly busy times for the Chamber.

Secondly, at a recent British Chambers of Commerce North West Regional Assembly Meeting held at the Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce I met up with a number of Presidents, Chairs and Chief executives from Chambers around the Region.

For more information on how the Chamber works to support the South Cheshire business community visit or call 01270 504700

I DON’T WAIT FOR OPPORTUNITIES, I CREATE THEM AS A CHAMBER MEMBER I’M WELL CONNECTED If it’s the opportunity to network with like-minded business people, belonging to your local Accredited Chamber of Commerce means you are always well connected.


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Highways brief for Chamber businesses of Strategic Infrastructure Chris Hindle said: “Ending bottlenecks is good news for motorists and business, the local economy and environment. We know this causes disruption but after many years of suffering frustrating traffic delays, the message from local people and businesses when consulted was just get it done." The road works, members were told, also formed part of a bigger plan to ready Crewe for HS2 in nine years and make journeys in and out of town less of a headache for shoppers at a time when the council is pressing on with its face-lift plans, which include redevelopment of the Royal Arcade. Others in the pipeline include improvements around North West Crewe, dualling of the A500 bottleneck and a new £60m Middlewich Eastern bypass improving links between midCheshire and the M6. Planning applications will be submitted this summer. Chamber Chief Executive Paul Colman with Cheshire East's Head of Strategic Infrastructure Chris Hindle, Head of Finance and Performance Alex Thompson and Portfolio Holder for Finance and Communications, Cllr Paul Bates

Cheshire East has been successful in gaining large slices of Government funding for the schemes, thanks to its reputation as a top place to live and set up business. South Cheshire Chamber Chief Executive Paul Colman said: "HS2 will bring great things to the area in years to come but when meeting local businesses, the feed-back is concern and frustration over the current road system and parking. The Chamber welcomes the highways improvements which will address many of the issues raised but will be pressing to ensure parking is a priority in these and future plans." Cllr Paul Bates, Portfolio Holder for Finance and Communications, presented highlights of the council budget which has set aside an extra £2m for highways improvements.

Already underway and progressing well is a £7.5m Cheshire East Council scheme to remodel Crewe Green roundabout and end frustrating delays faced by motorists and commercial vehicles travelling between Crewe, Haslington, Middlewich, Sandbach and the M6 motorway. Members heard how a new-look oval-shaped roundabout, widened to increase traffic flow, will include a dual use footway and cycleway. Gone will be the complex system of traffic lights and road markings that have made it difficult to negotiate for decades.

South Cheshire Chamber members have been updated on major infrastructure improvements which will change the face of travel in the area for generations to come.

The works are on target to end in November and will be closely followed by a £10.5m overhaul of Sydney Road bridge, crossing the Crewe to Manchester line. That will involve demolishing the bridge and replacing it with a new structure including a pedestrian footpath as well as vehicle and cycle lanes. Speaking at the Chamber's quarterly Economic and Local Update event, Cheshire East's Head

Mr Colman updated members on the latest British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) economic survey which shows countrywide domestic sales up by 17% and export sales up by 30% in the first quarter of 2018. Improved cash flow was registered by an extra 3% of businesses in the North West. Local & Economic events are staged quarterly by the Chamber at Cheshire College, Crewe giving members a chance to learn more about local and national issues impacting their businesses.

The next Local and Economic update will take place at 8am on Thursday 19th July at Cheshire College – South & West, for more information contact Lauren Readdin on 01270 445408 or For information on joining the Chamber call 01270 504700 or to learn more about the benefits of membership visit

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Chamber welcomes HS2 hub announcement


The Business Council was established by the Chamber to allow major employers in the area to play a leading role in shaping future economic development.

South Cheshire Chamber of Commerce has hailed the Government’s backing for a HS2 hub station at Crewe a victory for key employers who have supported the campaign. Officials say strong support from the business community, together with Crewe’s location and rail heritage, make the town the perfect place to lead the high-speed revolution. The Chamber has campaigned on behalf of Crewe since HS2 was first mooted and one of the key objectives of forming the South Cheshire Business Council was to see the town restored to its former glory as the epicentre of rail travel. Chamber Chairman, Shaun Cafferty said: “Crewe was created by the railway and the fact that it is going to be rejuvenated by the railway once again is fantastic news. The Chamber has lobbied long and hard for Crewe at a national level and only just before Christmas the Chamber’s Business Council made its views clear once again, forwarding letters of support for a HS2 hub. This result is a victory for all who have supported the campaign. It’s great for the economy and all the people who live in the area. It means local businesses can now plan ahead, reassured over the town’s future as a modern rail town.”

At the end of last year they wrote to Transport Secretary Chris Grayling urging the Department of Transport to put Crewe back at the centre of the rail network, with a fully integrated hub offering swift travel to London and including a northern junction for speedy services to Manchester and up to Scotland. In making his announcement Mr Grayling said the Government had listened to people’s views on the Crewe Hub consultation and took into account the town’s proud history as an epicentre of rail journeys. Mr Cafferty said businesses are excited and confident that over the forthcoming years the area will experience significant economic growth and prosperity. He added: “The business community believes a fully integrated HS2 hub for Crewe, with northern junction, is vital if we are to boost the local and regional and national economy. The benefits include 360 degree connectivity, access to labour and an increase in freight capacity. “It will provide the town with an opportunity to realise its potential, with increased population, increased housing and increased employment sites and jobs.” “Private sector investment is key to generating this economic growth and although 2027 is still a long way off, the benefits will begin to be felt sooner as industry sees Crewe as a good place to invest. To the wider community that means new jobs and more money to spend locally. The positive vibe can only increase as the town centre regeneration takes shape, helping to enhance civic pride and its appeal to shoppers. “We firmly believe HS2 will herald a new beginning for a town built around its rail industry and the Chamber is delighted at this announcement.” For more information on becoming part of the South Cheshire Chamber visit

Providing a platform to future success

The Chamber has welcomed many students as interns, offering them an opportunity to learn new skills and go on to achieve great things in their future careers. Here Charlotte Tinsley and Beatrix Farkas talk about their work experience at the Chamber.

Never thought three months can go this fast. I spent three amazing months in England as a student and intern at the South Cheshire Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

My time at the office taught me a lot about working and business in general. I remember when I first read about the SCCCI I had no idea about what does it mean to work or join the Chamber. Now, thanks for the people in the office I understand what they do and that how important their work is for the business community. Besides working four days and going to the University a day per a week at the weekends I had time to travel a bit. I visited Nantwich, Manchester, Liverpool and London. I absolutely loved this places!

Let’s not forget about the fact that I managed to learn how to drink tea in the proper way! I did it absolutely wrong all of these years, but now I am ready to let everyone at home know about tea and milk. In the beginning I was a bit nervous about this new “adventure” but now I am free to say that I met amazing people and I enjoyed every second of my time here – Beatrix Farkas

Firstly, may I say how grateful I am to have been given the opportunity to work for the South Cheshire Chamber of Commerce.

During my second year at Manchester Metropolitan University, I was provided the opportunity to work with the Chamber as a work placement, which then progressed to part time employment. Not only had I broadened my business knowledge, but was also provided the opportunity to network with a range of professional and friendly Chamber members.

Unfortunately, as my time at University is to come to an end, so is my time with the Chamber, as I have recently been appointed as a Marketing Executive at OSBOS/Three Sixty in Northwich. I look forward to my new adventure, and wish the Chamber and its members all the very best for the future – Charlotte Tinsley

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Set a date for Cyber Safety Forum “Specialist criminal groups target individuals, small businesses and large corporate networks to steal personal information in bulk in order to profit from the compromised data available to them. Although larger organisations may have an appreciation of the cyber threats they face, many small to medium-sized enterprises are unclear about the ways in which they’re vulnerable, and as many as 45% mistakenly think they’re not a viable target.” Kari Hazelton of Prism Solutions, Mark Cotton and Alison Gabbott from Cheshire Constabulary and David Tucker of Ibis Styles Hotel at the Cyber Safety Forum launch

South Cheshire of Commerce is offering another opportunity to learn more on how to protect your business from a cyber-attack. April saw a good attendance at the launch of the Chamber's quarterly Cyber Safety Forum presenting expert advice from Alison Gabbott and Mark Cotton from Cheshire Constabulary. Attendee Chris Boundy from Hibberts Solicitors said it was “A great, non-technical insight - a must for all businesses”. Join us again at the Ibis Styles Hotel on Crewe Business Park on June 21. Chamber Events Co-ordinator Daryl Williams said: “Organised crime has been quick to take advantage of the opportunities offered by the Internet, particularly the growth in e-commerce and online banking.

The Forum will offer vital information on beating cyber criminals who pose a threat to all Internet-facing organisations. Their attacks are automated and indiscriminate, exploiting known vulnerabilities rather than targeting specific organisations. They can disrupt and cause considerable financial and reputational damage to even the most resilient organisation. If you suffer a cyber-attack, you stand to lose assets, reputation and business, and potentially face regulatory fines and litigation – as well as the costs of remediation. The UK government's Cyber Security Breaches Survey 2017 found that the average cost of a cyber security breach for a large business is £19,600 and for a small to medium-sized business is £1,570. The National Cyber Crime Unit leads the UK’s response to cybercrime, supports partners with specialist capabilities and coordinates the national response to the most serious of cybercrime threats.

Working closely with the Regional Organised Crime Units (ROCUs) local police forces and other partners to respond rapidly to changing threats. The Forum, open to Chamber members only, will help raise awareness of the threats of Cyber Crime to individuals and businesses across all sectors and of all sizes. Our experts will help allay fears by offering guidance and signposting to sources of specific support. The quarterly forums will open up debate regarding current cyber issues, concerns and threats and encourage best cyber-safe practice. Finally, delegates will hear more about Cheshire Police Cyber Crime activities, the support they offer and how they respond to any cybercrime issues. There will be an opportunity to ask questions. The event is supported by Prism Solutions and Ibis Styles Hotel. To book a place visit or Lauren on 01270 445408

A sad farewell to Clive Paul N Gater, Orion Engineering Ltd, pays tribute to Clive Workman, a former Chamber Chairman who has sadly passed away. I am sorry to report that I attended the funeral of former Chamber Chairman, Clive Workman, on Thursday, March 29th.

I first met Clive at what was then Crewe and Alsager College and now MMU, when starting the DMS course there in 1990. A quiet person, with a razor sharp mind, and a wit and sense of humour to match. As myself and the rest of our DMS group found out on numerous occasions over the duration of the course. Clive kindly allowed the group to use the offices of Europa Scientific Ltd as a base for group projects, on a number of occasions. A few years later, he helped me to get my own business started. Resilient, when Europa sadly failed, he started Instrument Science, to carry on working on scientific instruments.

Although Clive was ill when I phoned him to keep in touch, earlier this year, he answered by saying I'm still here, to which I replied good! I suspect that Clive will have made a similar impression on other Chamber Members who knew him well. Sadly missed, but not forgotten. Condolences’ to the family and everyone else who knew him. John Dunning, Chamber President also added a tribute saying: “Clive was instrumental in the formation of the Chamber and gave great guidance and leadership as its Chairman during its formative years alongside running his extremely successful Europa Scientific business. “It was a privilege and pleasure to work with Clive who was a true gentleman and we should be grateful for his contribution to the business community."


Contact Jon Barnes for prices on FULL, HALF, QUARTER and BUSINESS CARD size advert space Telephone: 01270 445409 • Email:

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A Q&A with high-profile people in the South Cheshire business community

Here we speak to Dhesi, Principal and Chief Executive of Cheshire College - South & West which supports 13,000 learners and 1,300 Apprentices with campuses in Crewe, Ellesmere Port and Chester.



employers; our merger has allowed us to actually expand what we do.

You like to be known as Dhesi and have a great rapport with learners, how important is it to create the right vibe for them?

Dhesi tell us about your role and what you love most about your job? As Principal/CEO of Cheshire College South & West, I lead one of the largest educational organisations in Cheshire & Warrington. The role is very varied, from ensuring that every one of our learners fulfil their potential through to ensuring the College is contributing to the economic success of our region. Leading an organisation that employs just under 700 like-minded colleagues passionate about changing people’s lives is incredibly rewarding. Ensuring that our learners leave us with excellent qualifications but also fully equipped with the skills to succeed at university and employment is what continually drives us forward. What I love most about the job is meeting former learners and hearing about how they have gone on to have successful careers right across the globe.

I have always been called Dhesi since my school days. This does occasionally cause confusion, as Dhesi is my surname. Only my mother uses my first name! I have been a Principal for 7 years in 2 different Colleges, and I have found that it works well with learners. In some Colleges, the learners may not see the Principal very often, I always wanted to ensure this was not the case in our College. Whichever campus I am at on a particular day you will find me along with my leadership colleagues at the front entrance every morning welcoming learners to the College. Using just ‘Dhesi’ is similar in that it is about being approachable, visible and easily recognisable. We believe, our learners feel that they have a relationship with the College and that we instil in them a real passion for learning that will stay with them throughout life. We want learners to feel that this College is somewhere that they can come back to at different stages of their career and life. We want our learners to feel proud of this College. I am proud to say that we have several former learners who have come back to work at the College. We have three amazing and innovative campuses, you will be surprised how often we hear the word ‘WOW’ when people first visit. We are very fortunate to work within such inspiring environments but for me the true reason why our College is so special is the staff and learners that bring it to life. Creating a professional, friendly and ambitious culture.

Can you tell us a little about your background and how you came to be at the helm of this world-class facility? The College has entered an exciting new era following its merger with West Cheshire College last spring, how has the first year been? It has been an exciting year, meeting new learners, staff and partners from across the larger geographical area we now cover. The support and goodwill that we have received from parents, employers and all the communities we serve has been incredible and humbling. Mergers can be complex, however this one has gone smoothly because of this support as well as the commitment of my colleagues. In January, we officially launched our new name and logo. We wanted to create a distinctive brand, that would be reflective of our new College - confident and with an exciting future. The merger has built on the complementary strengths of both Colleges, creating a financially robust organisation, that can continue to deliver high quality education, training and skills as well as supporting small, medium and larger employers across the region. Rather than close provision or reduce the support we provide for

I was born in the midlands but have lived most of life in Wales. I have been very fortunate in that people have believed in me and given me opportunities to work hard and succeed. I will always be grateful to my first Principal who appointed me to a senior leadership position at the age of 26. I have always found that if you give your all to making a success of the role you are in; you don’t have to go looking for new opportunities, they will find you. I was immensely proud when I was appointed as Principal/CEO of South Cheshire College in 2014, working with brilliant and passionate colleagues. Our success created the opportunity for the recent merger.

The College is based in Crewe, which is on the cusp of exciting regeneration, what are your hopes for the town? It certainly is an exciting time for the town with promised public and private investment as well as the plans for the HS2 Hub Station. It is essential that there is a skilled and qualified workforce so that the

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14 CHAMBER NEWS town can respond to these opportunities and we are certainly well placed to support that ambition, working already with some of the town’s largest employers including Bentley Motors and Virgin Trains. We are absolutely committed to working with all partners in ensuring the residents and businesses of Crewe benefit from the exciting regeneration plans.

What is the motto you live and work by? I always find myself going back to the following slightly adapted saying “…that it’s not strongest nor the most intelligent that succeed but the ones that are most adaptable to change…”. An essential part of my role as Principal/CEO is to ensure our organisation is adapting to the changing, demands, world and environment, we operate in. We also work hard to ensure learners are resilient and are able to adapt to change.

Cheshire College is a long-standing Patron of the South Cheshire Chamber, how important is it to be part of the business community and tell us about the benefits of forging these connections. The Chamber and the wider business community is incredibly important to us. The Chamber champions local businesses as well as providing support. The Chamber provides us with valuable networking opportunities, an understanding of the challenges that local business face as well understanding what they need from their local College. This close working has helped us develop bespoke training solutions for local employers of all sizes, from a full apprenticeship programme through to learners redesigning showrooms. We have over £136m worth of assets and specialist equipment available to support our local businesses.

The 'Baby Boomers' Aren't Retiring

In the Know event - Thursday 12th July 2018, 8 - 10.00am Wychwood Park Hotel, Wychwood Park, Weston, CW2 5GP It is unlawful to discriminate in the workplace on the grounds of age, therefore employers need to be aware of pitfalls to avoid and how to deal with performance concerns, health issues and redundancy which may affect older workers. The moving position of the state pension age and the wider impact on your employee workforce may provide succession planning and inter-generation planning opportunities that previously did not exist. However, employing individuals beyond their state retirement age (SRA) brings additional responsibilities for employers in relation to work based and auto enrolment pensions. Join us at this informative event with speakers Camille Renaudon, Employment Solicitor & Partner at Hibbert’s Solicitors and Will Ellison, MD at Edwards Ellison Wealth Management

The baby boomer generation is reaching retirement age, but they aren’t retiring—at least not at the same rate as their parents. This is having a significant impact on the age of the workforce. Retirement age has been increasing since 1998, keeping many older employees in the workforce longer. In addition, the recession depleted the retirement savings of many baby boomers, forcing them to delay their retirement or return to work. This trend is important because of its sheer magnitude: not only is the workforce aging, it is doing so at an alarming rate. Did you know that by 2020, 30% of all employees will be aged 50 or over with many employees looking to work up to age 65 or beyond? In 2014, just three years after the abolition of a default retirement age, there were over 1m workers over the age of 65 and this number is set to increase. But it is important to remember the many advantages of mature workers: they tend to be well-trained, have specialised skills, exhibit a strong work ethic and take great pride and satisfaction in their work and as experienced, mature employees in key positions begin to retire, or face health issues that keep them from working, it’s important to have a plan in place for who will fill these important positions. Organisations must devote time to training and developing the employees who will step into key positions when older workers retire.

Camille will highlight employer’s legal obligations and suggest practical steps to avoid age discrimination pitfalls plus offer guidance on how to deal with flexible working requests, performance concerns and redundancy. Will is going to provide an overview of recent pensions freedom legislation and the pensions responsibilities for those employing individuals beyond their SRA. In addition, Will shall share statistics regarding the average pension pot v what an individual might need to aim for to provide a comfortable retirement. Both speakers will consider the impact of an ageing workforce in relation to succession planning and inter-generational planning opportunities. To book onto this event visit and click onto Events

We are grateful to our event sponsors and supporters who have made this event possible.

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Key role of employer brand: Why should you care about your employees’ happiness? It has been widely reported that there is a scarcity of skilled workers. According to ONS, unemployment in the latest period (December 2017-February 2018) was 4.2%, the lowest since 1975. The 2017 British Chamber of Commerce Workforce survey shows the impact of this with skills and labour shortages being widespread across the economy. Half of businesses reported struggling to fill vacancies in the last year. This is great news if you are in the job market, but more concerning as an employer. If you want to attract – and keep – the right people in this competitive market, then you need to be the employer of choice. This means that your ‘employer brand’ (what people think it is like to work for you) is becoming ever more important.

Your online footprint counts Do you use TripAdvisor? It seems that many of us trust user reviews most. This is the world we live in and sites such as Glassdoor, which reviews companies and their management, serve the same purpose.


Here are three top tips for a strong employer brand: 1. Know what makes your employees happy This is relatively simple - just ask them! And really listen to what they say. Depending on your company, you can use feedback sessions, appraisal meetings or a survey. The employee satisfaction survey can be viewed as a bit of a PR exercise, but is very valuable if used properly. If it allows your team to feel their opinion is valid, relevant and will be listened to, a survey can increase both engagement and satisfaction which give operational benefits.

Liz Harrison, Founder of Harrison Insight

It’s better for you if the frustrations are dealt with up front, rather than anonymously posted on Glassdoor. Check to see if you already have any reviews at 2. Communicate, communicate, communicate Not only must you listen to what your employees are telling you, you must let them know that you have heard them. This means feeding back the good, the bad and the ugly. So, the Google footprint of that employer brand is there, online.

Celebrate and do more of the good.

Recruiters have reported having candidates who refuse to go for interview or accept job offers with companies that have poor Glassdoor reviews. So, it is crucial that you think of your employer brand at all relevant management touch points.

Address the bad and the ugly.

It is entirely possible that, in five years’ time, everyone you hire will have checked out your Glassdoor review – so don’t wait. Embrace it and be ready.

3. Be proud!

What does this mean? You must understand what motivates and frustrates your employees. You must not only be a good listener but must also ‘walk the talk’ and take action where necessary. Actively managing your workforce is key. It is vital to have the right people in management roles – you need managers who can lead, coach and motivate your team.

Shout it loud: “you said, we did”. Only then will your team feel it is worth the effort of telling you.

Use the power of satisfied employees in both recruitment and marketing. Allow them their own voice and they will be your best ambassadors. Looking after your employer brand is not just ethical, it is commercial. Both prospective employees and customers want to be involved with a caring company.

For more information contact Dr Liz Harrison on 07818 001 009 or visit

Sources: British Chamber of Commerce Workforce Survey 2017 ONS (Office for National Statistics); UK employment rates (aged 16 and over), seasonally adjusted February 2018

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Frothy and fun - Bubble Rush gives boost to hospice Hundreds of people ran, jumped and slid their way around Oulton Park race track as St Luke’s Hospice held its fourth Bubble Rush.

sun shone and it was wonderful to see people of all ages united in a common cause to fundraise and support its work.”

Over 1,200 people of all ages took part in the 5km frothy fun run helping to raise thousands of pounds towards the care of patients and their families at the hospice. Among them was the Chamber’s International Trade Manager Jacqui Morris who not only helps raise funds but works as a volunteer at the Winsford hospice.

Bubble Rush is a family-friendly fun run where entrants literally get covered from head to toe in coloured bubbles. It was the brainchild of St Luke’s Hospice and created with local events company Extreme Adventure.

Jacqui enrolled the help of Chamber Membership Coordinator Angela Wilkinson in a bid to raise further funds by entering the fun 5K event. They were sponsored by friends and family and colleagues at the Chamber office. Tired and wet through, they enjoyed every minute of the challenge!

Chamber’s International Trade Manager Jacqui Morris and Membership Coordinator Angela Wilkinson at the Bubble Rush

Jacqui said: “St Luke’s have been Chamber members since 2004. The hospice supports anyone with a life-limiting illness and gives palliative care to local people whilst supporting their families. I love being part of the hospice volunteer team and giving a little back to help the nursing staff. “Taking part in the Bubble Rush was a fun way to raise well-needed funds for the facility. The

Save the date for showground reception July 24 is one of the most popular dates on the summer networking calendar. The Nantwich Show Business Reception is always hugely popular, attracting more than 200 people to Dorfold Park on the eve of the largest one-day agricultural event in the UK.

Since then Extreme Adventure has created Bubble Rush Events for more than 40 hospices a year with the hospices raising in excess of £1million for patient care. The St Luke’s Events Team is now working on its second fun run event of the year in September. KAPOW is a giant inflatable obstacle run and will take place on Saturday, September 9. Places are available. For more information go to

The event is open to Chamber members, RedShift Hub members and guests of Nantwich Show officials. Look out for invitations in the post, which this year, are kindly designed and sponsored by Design Office.

Staged in the International Cheese Show marquee, delegates will be able to see behind the scenes of the show before thousands of people descend the following day. A welcome drink and cheese & biscuits kindly sponsored by Residence Restaurant & Bar and the Nantwich Agricultural Society will be served.

The South Cheshire Development Agency is seeking to increase the amount of lending available to local businesses Flashback to last summer’s crowd-puller

We seek to encourage local businesses and professionals to call and discuss any business proposal. We have user friendly business plan template available together with easy to follow guidance notes.

Loans of up to £25,000 available and can be for working capital or specific expenditure projects. Business of any size can apply. We welcome Start Ups. For more information contact Richard Weilding on 01270 445407 or email

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Need a loan? The Chamber can help . . .


Don’t let shopping trends take the fizz out of business Richard Weilding recalls the days of grocery deliveries and the pop van When I was around 4 years old in the mid 50’s (I know. Hard to believe isn’t it?) I remember my mum going to small owner managed shops in Stalybridge for our weekly shop. We would then have our grocery and greengrocery orders (they were two separate shops in those days) delivered to our door. We would pick up our fresh meat from a shop known as a butcher’s who actually only sold uncooked meat – no pies, cooked meats, cheese or exotic sauces (albeit I do believe his beef dripping originated from neighbouring Dukinfield). Meat for later in the week was ordered but not delivered until Tuesday and Thursday by the butcher’s wife. Add to this, pop delivered by the Corona Man, doorstep milk, coal dumped at the back door, three insurance premium collectors, twice daily newspapers and even Beer at Home by Davenports at Christmas – no off licences. Move forward a few years (at least) and it appears that everyone now relies on home

deliveries once more. The difference this time is that we have changed the source of our shop, dropping the High Street in favour of the internet and have also exchanged the independent food retailers with large supermarket home delivery. The original concept of 60 years ago was driven by customer service whereas now it is convenience and cost. The High Street Banks continue to close branches because they state that they are not busy enough. Most people now use the internet and banking apps. Pretty soon we will lose RBS from Nantwich and Sandbach albeit their customers will dovetail into Nat West. The upshot is however yet more empty High Street space. Whether we like it or not or indeed whether we know it or not, we all have to continue to evolve in what we do and how we do things. At South Cheshire Development Agency we continue to engage with businesses that are facing these challenges head on and are being pro-active in adapting their circumstances to become better at what and how they do things. If you feel that your business environment is

changing and are held back from dealing with these issues through lack of funding, then get in touch with me and hopefully we can do something about it. I still miss the ‘pop man’ delivering lemonade and Tango every Friday. The trouble was, having an older brother and in order to get my share, both bottles had gone by Saturday lunchtime. Roll on next Friday!

Development Loan Director Richard Weilding

For more information on Chamber loans contact Richard Weilding on 01270 445407 or email You can read more from Richard on the Chamber Portal where he blogs regularly

Wade has the ingredients for success with Chamber loan and marketing and combined this with his love of Caribbean food to deliver a unique offering within the multi- cultural food outlets of the town. Before committing to his new premises at 116 Edleston Road (just before the old Stalbridge Road school on the way into Crewe), Wade trialled his food in Crewe Town Centre via a pop-up food stand and extended his production times by providing a delivery and events catering service from home. The shop opening has therefore represented a natural progression as he looks to cater for the ever increasing demand for his unique product range.

Development Loan Director Richard Weilding meets Wade Parker at the Edleston Road food outlet

Edleston Road has seen a new addition to the food offering in this part of Crewe with the opening of Wadey’s Kitchen which specialises in Caribbean and English fast food. Established and run by Wade Parker, he has used his background in customer service

Wade commented: “I knew there was a gap in the marketplace for Caribbean dishes and over the past year or so I have tried to establish the extent of the demand there would be for my food. “I have been delighted with the feedback from satisfied customers and it has been

pressure from them that has prompted me to take this next step into operating from this retail space. “The first few weeks have been great and I look forward to introducing many more locals into the delights of jerk chicken, salt fish fritters and curried goat, as well as our traditional English menu. “We were delighted to get support from the South Cheshire Development Agency in establishing this new base for my business.” Richard Weilding from the Agency said: “We have been working with Wade for several months in developing his plan and doing everything possible to ensure that his proposal to invest in premises would mean he has hit the ground running. “We feel that his unique product range will be a winner with the discerning palates of Crewe.’

For more information go to @wadeyskitchen on Facebook or call 01270 845444

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Chamber in twinning trip to Poland to boost trade links “South Cheshire is home to over 5000 Polish people and we hope to maximise the benefit of this relationship by developing contacts and identifying areas for local businesses to trade overseas. We have a wonderfully diverse range of businesses and services in South Cheshire and we took this message to Poland.”

South Cheshire Chamber’s International Trade Manager Jacqui Morris is heading to Poland in a bid to strengthen business links

Chamber of Commerce officials are hoping to strengthen international trade links between South Cheshire and Poland after taking part in a twinning visit. A delegation including the South Cheshire Chamber’s International Trade Manager Jacqui Morris journeyed to Dzierzoniow, a town at the foot of the Owl Mountains in southwestern Poland, in May. The group which included Councillor David Marren and Crewe and Nantwich Fire Cadet leader Peter Shields attended Dzieroniow Economic Presentations, an event where the town’s businesses exhibit their offering. Jacqui Morris said: “Crewe has been twinned with Dzieroniow since 2005 and as well as reaffirming cultural links, the Chamber’s aim is to create opportunities for our local business community.

Information on opportunities will be fed back to businesses via the Chamber’s International Trade Forum which is held at the Manchester Metropolitan University Crewe campus. The last meeting took place on June 6th when Ed Whitby from Crewe ice cream van manufacturer Whitby Morrison will share some of the company’s adventures in global markets and Margaret Bourke from the Department of International Trade will present ‘Doing Business with Japan’ offering delegates important tips on Japanese culture. Jacqui added: “Dzieroniow is steeped in history and has a strong tourism economy. We believe it is an area where our local businesses can tap into exporting their products and services.” Dzieroniow is a popular destination for tourists who hike the Owl Mountains home to one of the largest species of owl, the Eurasian eagle owl noted for its distinctive ear tufts and giant wingspan of over 6ft.

Like Crewe, it is also twinned with Bischofsheim in Germany. Cllr Marren, a member of Crewe and Nantwich Twinning Association, said: "Our invitation was for the Dzierzoniow Days event which took place over May 25-28. “This is an annual community festival combined with a trade exhibition called Dzierzoniow Presentations, where town businesses come together to exhibit their offerings to making it the biggest economic and cultural event organised by the town. “The Mayor of Dzierzoniow is really keen on economic and cultural links and feels, as I do, that Civic links really need to be enhanced by offering opportunities to local clubs and businesses. “The message coming loud and clear from Dzierzoniow is: ‘Our arms are open, trade with us and make connections.’ We hope this visit will help forge exciting new links.” Businesses already trading with Poland are invited to get in touch with the Chamber to see how they can build relationships with Polish companies. The Chamber is also actively pursuing opportunities for local businesses to trade in the Commonwealth Countries.

For further information on how the Chamber supports and advises best practise for exports and assists in seeking opportunities in international trade, contact Jacqui Morris on 01270 445 406 or

Prince Edward tells international traders 'Commonwealth is a force for good' MUM). In his presentation he said “I’m always conscious or slightly nervous in this country that for several generations we’ve been brought up on a diet that the Commonwealth is somehow linked to the Empire and the Empire was all bad. And it’s delightful to hear the enthusiasm coming though from the speakers and no, this is a force for good”

March 12 - a rainy day at Chester race course. Soft under foot. This did not deter the businesses of the Northwest gathering to showcase their wares.

The event was to mark Commonwealth day and the launch of the Merseyside and Cheshire Commonwealth association. The aim of the association is to build and develop international trade links between local businesses and the 53 Commonwealth states.

South Cheshire Chamber was in good company when Prince Edward (Earl of Wessex) flew into the race course to deliver a message of good wishes from the head of the Commonwealth (known also as

Jacqui Morris International Trade Manager at the Chamber was fortunate enough to be singled out to briefly discuss the redevelopment of Crewe and its International Trade activity.

The Prince went on to say that he was taking a keen interest in HS2. Impressively the Prince was well versed regarding our local Northwest towns. Other speakers included David Watson, Australian Trade Commissioner, Kofi Addo, head of Trade and Investment Ghana High Commission UK and Ireland and our very own Chamber member and Crewe business man, Ed Whitby, operations director of Crewe based Whitby Morrison who are famed locally for the manufacture of hand built ice cream vans.

If you would like to get to know more about trading with the commonwealth please contact Jacqui Morris International Trade Manager at the Chamber 01270 445 406

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New Leaf continues to support adults back to work The Chamber performs the employer engagement role within a programme called New Leaf funded by The Big Lottery and European Social Fund. Recent success stories include Peter Ford. He had been unemployed for some time and was struggling to get back into work. Peter says: “I have found New Leaf to be an extremely helpful and supportive programme in helping me secure employment. I have New Leaf mentor Andy Edes and become more motivated to find participant Peter Ford proudly work with the support I have displaying his new contract to work received. All the different courses I at Manchester Airport have completed on New Leaf through my Mentor have improved my confidence and helped me in becoming more employable. “Trevor Langston of the South Cheshire Chamber has been a huge influence, introducing different opportunities through different companies and providing excellent advice in terms of interview support. He has helped me become aware of different roles and develop my confidence moving forward. “Andrew Edes of Groundwork (my Mentor) has been an excellent support throughout my journey on the programme. He has helped me identify my needs and understand the areas I needed to work on to get where I needed to be. Without that constant support from New Leaf I would still be looking for work.”

Peter attended a Jobs Fair promoting roles at the airport. Trevor introduced Peter to SSP, the food travel experts. Peter has been rewarded for his perseverance and has now started working with SSP at Manchester Airport. Gillian recently joined New Leaf. Five years ago she decided to give up work in order to care for members of her family and a close friend. She was now able to start thinking of herself and getting back into work. Her mentor, Gary Pickford from Groundworks, supported Gillian and introduced her to Trevor from the Chamber. Gillian had been on a phlebotomist course and really wanted to start a career as a phlebotomist in the NHS but didn’t know how to go about it as she had no experience. She gained the confidence to apply for a post on the bank with the NHS. Gillian says: “I didn’t know what to expect but Trevor kindly took me to the hospital to meet staff working in the hospital. Elaine, Alison and Alan were a real help, answering all of my questions. “When I managed to get an interview Trevor met me and helped me to prepare for my interview. He believed in me and gave me the confidence I needed. I had never had a formal interview and felt so intimidated by the thought of being confronted interviewed by a panel of four professionals form the NHS. “I went into the interview feeling fully supported and with everyone’s help I managed to successfully land my dream job.”

The Chamber’s role in New Leaf is a highly rewarding one and we are always keen to talk to potential employers. To find out more contact Angela Wilkinson on 01270 445404 and by e-mail to

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ASSURANT Assurant’s European Awards demonstrate uncompromising values

working by encouraging collaboration, reducing waste, improving efficiencies and driving corporate social responsibility. “I’m extremely proud of everything the SPACE team has achieved over the last couple of years. They’ve had a broad and wide ranging impact on the local community and our European employees. Being able to recognise all the European finalists at one event was tremendous,” said Andy Morris, Assurant CEO and president, Europe. Assurant’s values guide the way the organisation supports its customers and each other and featured heavily at the awards, recognising those who live its uncompromising core values of common sense, common decency, uncommon thinking and uncommon results. In March the first ever Assurant European awards took place in Manchester's award winning, iconic building, the Monastery, which was once listed as one of the world’s 100 most endangered sites, alongside Pompeii and the Taj Mahal. The awards were sponsored by Assurant’s SPACE (Supportive, Purposeful and Aligned Culture and Environment) team, who helped shape the event to recognise and celebrate the organisation's European business. With the business striving to be the best place to learn and work, Assurant launched the SPACE initiative, which aims to improve ways of

Speaking on behalf of the SPACE team, Annie Guest, Assurant HR Business Partner said: “The SPACE team has spent two years not only transforming our office environment but embedding our values in our European offices. “It was a fantastic opportunity to celebrate those who are role models for our values at the awards. We are proud to be part of a dynamic and thriving business and wanted to show our appreciation for the amazing people that make Assurant a great place to work.”

For more information visit


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REASEHEATH Reaseheath underlines the benefits of apprenticeships through Reaseheath College during two focused events held during National Apprenticeships Week. Reaseheath is one of the top three land-based apprenticeship training providers in the UK and currently trains over 1500 apprentices across its group. Employers attended breakfast meetings to learn about the high quality, employer led, apprenticeship programmes available across a wide range of sectors and supported by staff with extensive industry experience. Visitors join Head of Food Nick Blakemore in Reaseheath’s industry standard Food Processing Halls

Sixty local employers learned about the benefits of tailored apprenticeships offered

The attendees learned about the new Apprenticeship Standards, which specify the nationally recognised standard of skills which an apprentice is expected to achieve. Further bespoke employer services offered through

Reaseheath Training were also discussed, including business development, help with government funding and incentives, mentor support and recruitment. The visitors enjoyed a tour of Reaseheath’s £80million industry standard facilities, which include training centres for horticulture, agriculture, food processing, equine management and animal management. Opening shortly are an Advanced Engineering and AgriTech Centre and a sports science academy.

For more information visit

Projects could lead to mutually beneficial opportunities Ways in which undergraduates from Reaseheath College could work with regional businesses to the benefit of both were examined at an informative event held on campus.

collaborations which would allow undergraduates to carry out high quality research projects and problem solving for companies and in return gain essential industry experience.

The Innovation, Research and Development Showcase highlighted the advanced level of academic research and trials being carried out through University Centre Reaseheath. It was aimed at encouraging mutually beneficial

The event drew representatives from small and medium businesses and has led to fruitful further discussion.

Reaseheath’s Jamie Cook, explains drone technology

SG WORLD SG World celebrates its first Employee of the Year winner which has allowed the team to assist the business in achieving improved performance and customer satisfaction. Andrew also helps ensure that every member of SG World, both in the office and out on the road, can do their jobs with maximum efficiency, thanks to them having excellent working IT equipment backed up with a fantastically functioning IT infrastructure.

SG World, Health & Safety documentation and software specialists, celebrated the first winner of its Employee of the Year award in April. Andrew Quate, Infrastructure Engineer, won after being nominated for the monthly version of the prize back in February 2017. He received a large number of nominations, resulting in a unanimous decision for him to win Employee of the Year 2018! Andrew has played a key part in the transformation of SG World’s IT department,

When nominating Andrew, people commented on some of his personal qualities; the time he takes to ensure staff are happy with his work, the genuine care he has for his colleagues and the patience that he shows when dealing with people. As one voter said, and which probably summarises him best: “Andrew is extremely helpful. He never complains and does everything with a smile.” Andrew has SG World’s values of ‘do the right thing’, ‘do it the right way’, ‘be fresh’ and ‘be the best you can be’ at the heart of what he does and how he does it.

A very modest Andrew said: “I was genuinely shocked when I won the award because all the other nominees were amazing. To even be considered is a huge honour. I’ve won some shopping vouchers which will come in very handy, a very impressive trophy and – the best one – SG World CEO Mark Haase’s car parking space for a year!” Mark Haase, SG World CEO, said: “In our organisation, upholding our values as well as demonstrating capability in the role are measures of our people’s ability to work effectively and efficiently, as well as with each other. Andrew is a wonderful example of this, and it’s no surprise that he was unanimously voted as Employee of the Year.”

For more information on SG World visit or call 01270 500921

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BENTLEY Bentley Motors to build the UK’s largest solar-powered car port Commenting on the installation, Peter Bosch, Bentley’s Member of the Board for Manufacturing, said: “We continue to focus on new initiatives that reinforce our commitment to the environment, whether this is introducing alternative powertrain technologies in future models, or our award-winning work to reduce the environmental impact of our factory. “This solar installation is another example of how we can make our factory more sustainable by using technological innovation. This helps us produce extraordinary cars with responsibly-sourced materials in an efficient manner, while continually striving to reduce the company’s environmental impact.” The solar car port installation, which covers 1,378 car parking spaces, and an area of 16,426m², will be installed and operated by FlexiSolar, the innovative solar car port specialist. How the car port will look

Construction has started on the UK’s largest ever solar-powered car port at Bentley’s factory headquarters in Crewe. The installation of 10,000 solar panels, which has a capacity of 2.7MW, will take approximately six months to complete. Once completed, the car port - which covers Bentley’s colleague car park - will take Bentley’s energy system to 30,815 solar panels. This includes the 20,815 panel roof top installation completed in 2013.

The project is also backed by Innovate UK, the UK’s innovation agency driven to support the science and technology initiatives that will grow the UK economy. This solar installation announcement follows recent recognition that Bentley Motors has become the first UK automotive manufacturer to be awarded the Carbon Trust Standards for carbon, water and waste, further reducing the environmental impact of its operations in Crewe.

For more information visit

CHESHIRE COLLEGE - SOUTH & WEST Music loving business students win enterprise award for Festibag

Ben Berry, 18, from Northwich, added: “It’s been a fantastic experience. My role is Operations Director and I’ve had the chance to work with everyone on the project. From finding wholesalers to ordering products to contributing to the presentation for the competition; I’ve been involved in every aspect of setting up the company which I’ve really enjoyed.” The bag, branded Festibag, includes 16 essential products including rain poncho, portable charger, hair bobbles, toothbrushes, deodorant and hand sanitizer wipes. The company was set up with money invested by the Crewe and Nantwich Lions. The team have designed the product, bought stock, designed the brand and launched a website. Business students at Cheshire College – South & West’s Crewe campus have won a Young Enterprise award for their innovative new product called Festibag. Pictured business students with Business tutor Suzanne Davies (far left); and (right) Tom Dunlop, President of Crewe and Nantwich Lions, Suzanne Lockwood from Young Enterprise and Dhesi, Principal and Chief Executive at Cheshire College – South & West.

Entrepreneurial students studying Business at Cheshire College – South & West’s Crewe campus have won a Young Enterprise award for their innovative new product called Festibag. The team of 11 students, called Illuminite, won Best Trade Stand and Runner-Up for Best Company in the Young Enterprise Cheshire and Warrington Final held at Barclays Radbroke Hall in Knutsford. With attendance at festivals in the UK at an all-time high, the team developed an idea to set up a business producing festival bags. Jasmine Alsop, 18, from Tarporley, Managing Director of Illuminite, explains: “We were given the challenge by our tutor Suzanne Davies to create a business idea. As a team we all shared a love of music and had all attended festivals. So we came up with the concept of a festival bag which includes all your festival essentials.”

Suzanne Lockwood from Young Enterprise, the UK’s leading charity that empowers young people to harness their personal and business skills, said: “Our Young Enterprise Company Programme is an annual competition for 15 to 19 years olds to set up and run their own business. Over the course of a year groups of students create and run real profitgenerating businesses under the guidance of an expert business volunteer, developing real and tangible skills to set up a business or take into their future career.” The team will now progress to the competitions North West Regional Finals in Liverpool. Tom Dunlop, President of Crewe and Nantwich Lions, added: “The ethos of the local Lions Club is to support young people. We’re delighted to be able to help Cheshire College – South & West’s business students develop their business idea and it’s wonderful to see that they’ve already made such a success.”

To order a Festibag visit For more information about studying Business at Cheshire College - South & West, visit or call 01270 654654

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MORNFLAKE Porridge to the people with busy summer season July includes dates at Goodwood Festival of Speed, CarFest North, World of Music, Arts and Dance (WOMAD) Wiltshire and Love Trails music and running festival in South Wales. The world-famous sailing regatta at Cowes, CarFest South and Shrewsbury Folk Festival are in the diary for August while September’s itinerary includes Hampton Court Handmade Fair, Blenheim Half Marathon and various triathlon events.

The company will also have a big presence at the Royal Cheshire County Show, June 19-20, and this year it makes a debut as sponsor of Nantwich Schools Fest – a giant celebration of music and art, involving over 3000 pupils from the town’s primary schools. Mornflake marketing manager Richard Jones said: “It’s always great to get out and meet the people who buy our cereals and hear how much they enjoy them. “As we travel up and down the country, we fly the flag for healthy eating, our centuries old milling expertise and our home in South Cheshire.”

Mornflake ambassador Lewis Jones with UK Triathlon race director Keith Hancock and team members Chris Davies, Jennifer Evans and Michelle Robbins-Hulse

Thousands will enjoy a taste of Mornflake as the firm sets off on a busy schedule of festivals and shows over the next few months.

Mornflake has also thrown its weight behind the one of the country’s biggest programmes of triathlon events.

Crowds flocking to some of the country’s biggest music events, food festivals and flower shows will see why the Crewe-based company is famed worldwide for its tasty breakfast foods.

More than 10,000 competitors are taking part in the UK Triathlon series between now and October and Mornflake will keep them fuelled with energy-boosting porridge products as they swim, cycle and run to medal glory.

Mornflake ambassadors will be out in force to offer products at more than 30 dates between now and October. June will see Mornflake’s vintage van, Oatis, at RHS Chatsworth Flower Show, Bolesworth Horse Show, Henley Regatta and Love Supreme Jazz Festival in Lewes, East Sussex.

Oatis will be on his travels again this summer

For more information on products and recipes visit

Mornflake remains a major sponsor of the Nantwich Show every July and Nantwich Food Festival, taking place August 31-September 2. Its giant food hall is a major attraction at each event and this year will be no exception.

MANCHESTER METROPOLITAN UNIVERSITY University launches pioneering 3D print facility and artisans time and money and can help engineers, artists and product designers shake off the limitations of restrictive traditional processes. The workshop, located on the University’s Manchester city centre campus, has almost unparalleled wealth of equipment which can create virtually anything by either building it up layer by layer with liquid from a nozzle, known as additive manufacturing, or whittling, melting and sculpting a design into a block of material, called subtractive manufacturing. Manchester Metropolitan University and landowner Tatton Estates have agreed to open by 2019 a Cheshire 3D Hub on land off junction 7 of the M56 near Altrincham. The centre will build on the University’s recently launched digital training centre, PrintCity, that aims to close the gap between design and manufacturing. PrintCity staff want to show that harnessing the power of 3D printing can save businesses

Some of the products created so far beautiful jewellery made by complete 3D printing novices; tailored prosthetic arms designed for babies; and organic-looking polymer artwork that could simply not be produced any other way. The Cheshire 3D Hub will support businesses that need advanced manufacturing facilities such as robotic printing lines, industrial-scale milling machines and hi-spec metal printers.

Some companies are already experimenting with 3D printing but cannot afford the equipment to scale up and so will be able to turn to the hub to rent the equipment, use the equipment or re-locate into the building. The hub benefits from a fantastic location because it will feed into the LiverpoolWarrington-Manchester triangle, and is near Manchester Airport and the HS2 line, and a science park will be co-located on site. In short, Cheshire 3D Hub is an exciting project on a regional, national and global scale and will become an integral part of Cheshire’s international corridor of science and innovation.

For more information visit or call 0161 247 4646

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Don’t miss the boat!

Time is running out to take advantage of the DIT’s current grant funding programme - The Enhancing SME’s International Trade Performance programme!

Sector specific support:- eg Food and Drink, Manufacturing, Energy, Chemicals, Automotive, Creative and Media, Biotech Life Sciences & Healthcare General Export Topics support such as Market research Online trading & e commerce SEO Logistics Exhibition management & planning Pricing policies & foreign currencies Branding & packaging Trademarks, patents, copyrights Terms & Conditions Agency, distributor & licensing agreements Strategic alliances & joint ventures

Over 50 local businesses have already taken advantage of the support to help them to develop business overseas with varying Sara Pomfret projects, so if you have an export market visit or project which you would like to action over the coming months, then please tell us about it NOW!

• • • • • • • • • • • •

The funding programme consists of financial support in the form of a 50% match funded grant towards eligible export development activities and also provides tailored export support services to SMEs across the North West including specialist advice, events, and activities.

This project complements the Department for International Trade’s core services and is designed to help firms to become better skilled and equipped to access new international markets. Through this project you will be able to exploit new overseas growth opportunities and boost your export performance.

The grant of up to £1500 can be used for travel to international markets or 2 days’ worth of consultancy support for a specific export project you need help and advice with.

If you are looking to develop your export sales this year, then why not take advantage of the support available to you?

The current DIT support programme to help SME’s develop sales internationally comes to an end in August and grants are now limited in numbers for the Cheshire region!

Some examples of eligible projects are:• • • •

Visiting a new market, exhibiting or attending a trade fair, attending a conference. Translating current literature Internationalising a web site Country support:- eg North and Central & South America, India, Middle East

Don’t miss the boat! Contact us now!

Contact Sara Pomfret, ERDF International Trade Adviser, DIT North West on or call 07922 581333

South Cheshire Chamber International Trade Support • Professional Advice • Export Documentation Service • Export Training Courses • FREE Export Review for Chamber Members (in partnership with Stark Export Focus) • International Trade Forum • International Trade Newsletter

Hundreds drawn to Pledge careers stand

On the stand the young people were also able to programme a range of Star Wars Droids to rescue the character Rae from Darth Vader and Some Troopers – until one of the Storm Troopers kidnapped the BB droid

The Pledge were invited by the Manufacturing Technology Association to run a careers stand at their MACH 2018 exhibition which took place at the Birmingham NEC between the 9th and 13th April. The MACH exhibition is the showcase for advances in the manufacturing industry

organised by the Manufacturing Technologies Association (MTA), a UK based trade association dealing specifically with engineering based manufacturing. It is a biennial exhibition which brings together all the best innovations and latest developments to come from the manufacturing technologies sectors under one roof. At the MACH 2018 exhibition there were over 600 companies exhibiting and over 25,000 visitors representing diverse sectors across the whole of the UK Manufacturing industry. During the five days of the exhibition over three hundred young people visited the Pledge stand. The focus of the stand was to give young people an insight into the range of career opportunities that are available in this sector of engineering as well as the skills and personal qualities employers from the advanced manufacturing and engineering sectors value.

Many of the students were accompanied by their parents/ carers. This gave Mark Watersform the Pledge, who manned the stand, the opportunity to talk with parents/ carers about importance employers place on personal qualities such as attitude, enthusiasm and communication in addition the qualifications a young person may achieve. As a result of the work the Pledge are doing with Middlewhich High School and Crewe UTC on a mechatronics project, both schools brought students down to the exhibition.

Any businesses wanting to get involved with Crewe Pledge are asked to contact Trevor Langston at the Chamber on 01270 445404 or by e-mail at

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Frank Roberts and Sons

Case Study

Baking bread in Cheshire since 1887, Roberts Bakery is a local landmark. Who hasn’t seen (and smelt) the bread in the iconic cooling towers?


Name Locations Cheshire, Derbyshire

Weaver Bomfords were invited to tender for a new printing solution to reduce costs and improve productivity and print security across the Roberts Group. As a fast-growing business, there were challenges in controlling and monitoring printing and scanning and in managing users and their access to print. The administration of the network had also become a burden for IT, as they were responsible for ordering toners and supporting users with printing issues.

Challenges • Fragmented network • No printing security • Food environment • IT handling print issues • No print rules

Authentication and Follow Me The introduction of proximity cards and readers on the devices has resulted in a Follow Me solution across the sprawling site. This has reduced waste from uncollected print and jobs printed in error, and has made the print network secure, helping with GDPR compliance. In addition, users are now easily identified and their permissions controlled, with the option to report on output and recharge costs.

Solution Introduction of proximity cards allows easy and secure authentication at any device across the growing site. Combined with printing rules to change user behaviour and reduce waste, significant savings are already being made to the print costs. User support and printer breakdowns are outsourced reducing the burden on IT.

A switch to more efficient devices An audit of the print network has resulted in volume being moved away from expensive network printers to more cost effective MFPs. Simple printing rules have changed user behaviours, redirecting work and enforcing defaults to mono and to duplex results in immediate savings.

Outsourced user support By providing a user helpdesk and hardware support, Weaver have reduced the reliance on the in-house IT department to deal with minor printing issues and repairs. The Weaver Remote monitoring service has also significantly reduced the burden of toner ordering and administration, with toners being automatically ordered and supplied as the devices need them.

‘Weaver have helped us change to proximity cards with minimal impact on users. We’re saving time and have started to see significant savings ’

03456 123858


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Healthcare company wins praise from rugby bosses “The season on the whole was positive. Lots of players stepped up and the team moral and mentality improved massively. Much of that we can attribute to the ongoing support of ctchealthcare who are there to offer pre-match treatments and pitch-side assistance whatever the weather. This helped Crewe and Nantwich RUFC to keep players on the pitch and get others back to health as quickly as possible.” South Cheshire-based ctchealthcare is a long-term sponsor of the club which plays at The Vagrants Sports Club in Willaston. Eli, who ruptured two major ligaments in his leg during a match, was given immediate treatment by resident physiotherapist Charlotte Banks and after care at the Crewe clinic. Charlotte said: “Most of the injuries are sprains and strains but others can be more serious, such as concussion, and the treatment given pitch-side in the first few seconds can mean the difference between a player making a full recovery or not. The team missed out on promotion this year but everyone has high hopes for them next season.” Physiotherapist Charlotte Banks at work during a pre-match treatment session at Crewe and Nantwich RUFC

Rugby officials have heaped praise on ctchealthcare for its hands-on support during one of the most memorable seasons on record. Crewe and Nantwich RUFC finished runners up in the highly-competitive Midlands Two West (North) league after a hard-fought play-off at Malvern. Although the team were defeated, captain Eli Woodward was thrilled to see them get so far and paid tribute to the healthcare company which treats player injuries. He said: “Last year we relegated from Midlands One so to get to the play-offs and finish second was success in itself and a huge feat.

Ctchealthcare also supports Crewe and Nantwich RUFC Mini and Junior section. Physiotherapist Jake Threadgold provided pitch-side assistance at the recent Cheshire Under 16s finals at Willaston and officials thanked him for a ‘superb job’ caring for youngsters.providing excellent customer service.” The company provides a range of treatments to the corporate sector. Physiotherapy services encompass Injury Prevention and Management, Sickness Absence Management and Health and Wellbeing initiatives that provide a rapid, tangible return on investment and a lasting legacy of employee engagement. For more information visit

Charity quiz scores new record for hospice said: “This was our 7th annual event and we were thrilled with the amount made which sets a new record thanks to the generosity of local businesses who paid to take part and chipped in to the raffle. “There was good-humoured rivalry and some great banter between professionals from quite different backgrounds but they were united in an effort to support the hospice.” The quiz, previously staged at Residence in Nantwich, has moved to a new home at the golf club where entrants were treated to a traditional meat pie supper. Teams of four were also drawn from local accountants Howsons, Barclays Bank corporate and agricultural divisions and law firms Beswicks, Bowcock & Pursaill, Freeths, Myers and Tinsdills. BCR managing director Phil Wood and director Chris Knott with NatWest quiz champs Nick Lee, Dave Harris, Paul Barren and Mike Ford

Brainy bankers from NatWest have carried off a charity quiz trophy for the fifth time. They were triumphant winners once again of the British-themed annual quiz staged by corporate recovery firm BCR.

Quiz champs from NatWest pooled their knowledge of sports, geography, history, film and current affairs to beat runners-up Barclays agricultural by eight points. In third place was Freeths. NatWest team captain Nick Lee said: “We have taken part every year to support Phil and his team’s effort for the hospice. Two of our team are in a sports quiz league which helps but win or lose it’s a great night and we’ll be back again next year!”

A record £910 was raised for the Douglas Macmillan Hospice after more than 30 people drawn from the local business community took part at Newcastle Golf Club.

BCR helps troubled businesses get back on their feet with specialist recovery and restructuring services.

BCR managing director Phil Wood, who was at the helm as quiz-master,

For more information visit

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1825 colleagues take Pretty Mudder challenge for third year

Stephany Powell, one of the 1825 team, said: "Pretty Muddy is a fantastic event to be part of and a fun way to raise much-needed funds. Everyone has been touched by cancer one way or another and we decided a couple of years ago we wanted do something. We started off with a group of 12 in 2016 and now 15 of us have got together to do it this year.” The challenge will take place against the picturesque backdrop of Cholmondeley Castle on July 21 as part of a nationwide series of women-only events aimed at raising money to beat all 200 types of cancer. The event is open to women and girls over 13 keen to support the charity drive of ‘fun, friendship and fundraising’ by walking, running or even dancing their way across the course. Stephany added: “Pretty Muddy brings us together as a team raising money for a great cause. It’s our first time at Cholmondeley Castle which has amazing views but we have no idea how difficult the obstacles will be.

Female colleagues from the Crewe regional office of Financial Planning firm 1825 are donning their pink T-shirts and trainers for their third Pretty Muddy challenge. Work pals from the firm’s office on Crewe Business Park will take on a 5k obstacle course as part of Cancer Research’s Race for Life event at Cholmondeley Castle. The team have raised £1,500 for the charity by taking part in the event at Tatton Park over the past two years and now they are set to crawl through mud, slip down slides and clamber over inflatables once again in the name of the cause.

Florists blossom at RHS Chelsea

“The last one is always a giant inflatable slide. By then we are soaked in mud so it’s very slippery but all help each other up. The camaraderie between everyone taking part is wonderful and there is so much support from family and friends. Coming away from the event is always funny too as we cover ourselves in bin liners so we don’t dirty our cars!” Dave Williams, Regional Managing Director of 1825 Crewe, said: “Our whole team in 1825 are behind them, and with the company’s ‘Raise and Match’ fundraising initiative, we can add up to £250 of the total raised. To date the team has raised over £1,500 and we all wish them luck in adding to that total.” Donations can be made through the team’s Just Giving Page:

RHS Chelsea Future Florists is a national contest open to all colleges and training institutions. The show itself is considered to be the best in the world and is attended by HM The Queen, other members of the Royal family and many celebrities.

Windsor Castle, where the royal wedding took place. The flowers and other materials were sponsored by Redrow Homes, Wyevale Garden Centres and Florismart. Said Karen Cope: “This was a once in a lifetime opportunity to show off the skills we have learned. It was absolutely amazing to return home with a Chelsea medal, and to have experienced the thrills of competing at such a high level.” Course Manager and team trainer Fiona Davies said: “The students worked really hard to plan and construct a world-class exhibit for this prestigious show and we are delighted at the result.”

Reaseheath’s medal-winning team with their design at RHS Chelsea Flower Show

Talented floristry students from University Centre Reaseheath in Nantwich have continued to prove they are among the nation’s best by taking a bronze medal in the finals of the RHS Chelsea Future Florists with a display inspired by the Royal wedding. The students, competing at the prestigious RHS Chelsea Flower Show, were challenged to create a floral arch for a spring wedding just two days after the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.

Chelsea pensioners visit Reaseheath’s exhibit

Reaseheath’s team of Karen Cope, Marion Downes, Sue Kinsey and Clare Brindle, who are studying for their Level 4 Higher Diploma in Floristry at University Centre Reaseheath, chose traditional scented flowers favoured by the Royal family such as roses and peonies in a pink, white, cream and green colour scheme. Their arch was in the shape of the historic Gilebertus door in St George’s Chapel,

The competition is run by the RHS in partnership with the British Florist Association and turns the spotlight onto rising talent within the industry. This is the fourth consecutive year that Reaseheath florists have qualified for the final.

For more information visit

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Rookery Hall Hotel wins Business Tourism Award Working collaboratively with the industry, VisitEngland’s Awards for Excellence celebrate the very best in English tourism, recognising businesses that champion exceptional best practice and customer service. The winners were revealed at the 29th awards ceremony held at The Assembly Rooms in Bath. Rookery Hall’s General Manager Martius Louwerse commented: “After a successful year of further growth in our conferences and events market, we are delighted to have been recognised by Visit Britain for business tourism excellence. We have a number of flexible spaces and a committed group of event professionals responsible for a large number of events, so this accolade is a huge reward for the team who work incredibly hard to ensure our product meets the highest standards of quality and deliver a service that reflects that.” Mairi Tutt, Regional Sales Manager added: “Rookery Hall is a market leader within the North of England, attracting and hosting a full range of business tourism events year after year, so I am really thrilled for the team to be recognised in this way. The hotel has always been a popular in the local market but we’ve also seen a steady growth of companies from Midlands, London and the SE choosing Rookery Hall for its accessibility and unique combination of stylish bedrooms, modern dedicated conference centre and extensive space for outdoor team building events.”

Mairi Tutt, Regional Sales Manager, Hand Picked Hotel Group with John Murphy, Deputy General Manager Rookery Hall Hotel & Spa

Built in 1816, Rookery Hall has eight event spaces located in the purpose designed and built Nantwich Suites. A later edition to the hotel, the selfcontained conference centre has a dedicated entrance and features the Worleston room for up to 200 delegates offering floor-to-ceiling windows with direct access onto terraces and lawns, as well as multiple breakout rooms across two floors, a bar and cloakrooms.

Rookery Hall Hotel & Spa in Nantwich, part of the Hand Picked Hotels Group, has scooped the Silver Business Tourism Award at the Visit England Awards for Excellence 2018. The historic 4* country house hotel, located within 38 acres of picturesque countryside, was the only tourism provider in Cheshire represented in the category and one of three providers in the North of England to be part of the overall 20 plus awards line up.

For residential conferences, the hotel has 70 bedrooms including modern executive rooms and feature suites, in addition to a 2 AA Rosette restaurant, a lounge bar, a contemporary spa and health club with a 17m swimming pool, a hydrotherapy pool, a sauna, a steam room, nail bar and seven treatment rooms offering treatments from leading product houses. For more information visit

Business community invests in staff with Teach Speech

Teach Speech

Teach Speech has been providing speech and language therapy support for children within Cheshire East Schools and the local community for the last five years. Services are now extended to adults with a range of speech and language needs.

Since then the Teach Speech team have supported a number of adults in the work place with a range of remedial intervention. Tina said: "Our team normally visit staff in their workplace and work with individuals in a quiet office/meeting room. By visiting the company premises we minimise the amount of time that employees are removed from their normal duties. Sessions normally last for an hour."

Last Teach Speech was approached by the MD of a local manufacturing company employing over 150 staff asking if it could support two valued employees with speech problems hindering their personal development at work. Director Tina Brown arranged for a formal assessment and a care plan was put in place. Tina worked with the employees and marked improvements supported their performance development at work in a very positive way.

She added: "It's fantastic that local businesses recognise the true value of their employees and are willing to invest in further developing individuals who have difficulties with speech, language and communication skills." For more information call 01270 651031 or visit

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Recognising Building Excellence in Cheshire East


Civicance Ltd, a wholly owned Cheshire East company, had 29 finalists in total across 15 different categories, more than any other authority in the North West region, with three overall winners and two Highly Commended. This fantastic achievement highlights the commitment to Building Excellence in the area, and the benefit of strong reliable working relationship between industry professionals and Local Authority Building Control. Managing Director Ian Bunn said: “Everyone involved shows a true commitment to build quality and deserves this recognition.” Winners and highly commended were: Best Local Builder or Traditional Craftsperson (Winner), Modern Unique Developments, Best Individual New Home (Winner), Bartholomew Homes, Nigel Daly Design, James Harrison (Sandbach Farm) Best Small Commercial Project (Winner), Armitage Construction, Buttress, National Trust, SALT Architects Ltd (Quarry Bank Mill, Styal), Best Individual New Home (Highly Commended), Henderson Homes, Calderpeel Architects (Seven Steps, Wilmslow), Best High Volume New Housing Development (Highly Commended) - Seddon Homes Ltd (Campion Point, Sandbach)

Seddon Homes have been highly commended for their new housing development - Campion Point in Sandbach

It was another successful evening at the 2018 LABC Building Excellence Awards North West for Civicance Ltd (Cheshire East Council), held at Emirates Old Trafford.

For more information on Civicance Ltd, and full list of LABC finalists visit

Better governance benefits everyone

impactful, and awarded 2nd place in the 2017 competition. In accepting the award, Su Turner, Founder and Director of Insight to Impact and Shaping Governance® said: ”I am so proud of the difference that Shaping Governance® is making in schools and charities, and to have this recognised by the local business community is fantastic. Su Turner leading a Shaping Governance session at a primary school in Nantwich

New Chamber member, Insight to Impact Consulting Ltd made a flying start in its first year of business, by being ‘Highly Commended’ in Dabbers Den - a Dragon’s Den style Cheshire-based Business Award. Shaping Governance® its key governance product, was praised by the judges as innovative and

“Governance is an important, but hidden part of leadership that rarely gets attention - that is, until things go wrong. Shaping Governance® is providing the necessary support that governors and trustees so rightly deserve.” The dynamic governance improvement product is proving popular with schools and charities, for its simplicity and effectiveness.

Since its launch, Shaping Governance® has supported hundreds of governors and trustees across the country to improve their knowledge, confidence, and team working, which has made a big difference to many schools and charities. One Cheshire headteacher said: “Su’s vast knowledge of governance, her patience and sensitivity and her understanding of our school were key drivers in improving our governance. In six months, we have managed to address some of the key issues which we have wrestled with for years.” For more information on Shaping Governance call 07900 245042 or visit

Mortgages at the click of a button

payslips and bank statements. This simple process just takes just a few minutes to complete. The company has also designed and built Mortgage Application App which allows people to upload and submit your documents within seconds.

My Simple Mortgage have launched a new interactive website that talks to you about your mortgage. By answering a few simple questions at the prompting of the site, My Simple Mortgage will be able to produce an Agreement in Principle with a lender the same day. Along with the new website comes their secure online portal where you can upload all the required supporting documents such as

Company Director James Adams said: "The launch of our new website, portal and app is huge for us. It's the end of months of work but we're really proud about how we've simplified the customer experience in applying for a mortgage. “The industry needs to come into the modern age and we're one of a few companies daring to do that." My Simple Mortgage has grown rapidly over the last year. With turnover doubling, more

advisers joining the team, and the move to new offices in Newcastle-under-Lyme, the young firm is now setting its sights firmly on national as well as local competition. Mark Savill, one of the company's other directors, added: "We love collaborating with and helping other Chamber members. The support of local clients, businesses and professionals has helped our business grow strongly and we now have the online systems in place to help clients wherever they are in the UK. “We already have customers from Scotland, right down to London and the south coast, and we're confident that our recent move to the national market will be successful." You can check out My Simple Mortgage's new site by going to

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Nantwich venue Firenze unveils stylish new look black theme. The menu has also has a face-lift, switching from Italian to all types of food including a delicious new Chargrill section. Mother-of-three Louise said: “As a businesswoman and mum living in Nantwich, it was important to me to use only tradespeople and other businesses based locally. “I knew I wanted to replace the red and black and create a more fresh and airy feel. So I found a wallpaper I loved at Cloughs decorating shop on Welsh Row and picked out colours from that for the seating, bar and menus.

Louise Bastow in the upstairs restaurant with blossom tree. Picture by Tim Jervis

A landmark bar and restaurant has opened in record time after a stunning transformation by a crack team of Nantwich businesses. Firenze on historic Welsh Row was closed for 12 days while painters, plasterers and upholsterers worked as a team on a major make-over. Often working through the night, their efforts have been given a big thumbs-up by the hundreds of customers who have since visited the venue. Firenze director Louise Bastow came up with the design using cool hues of blues and turquoise to replace the previous red and

“Upstairs we have installed a blossom tree which was inspired by a beautiful tree I have in my garden at home. Everybody worked so hard to minimise the closure period and by ‘shopping’ local we opened in record time, just 12 days. “I have to praise the skill and enthusiasm we have here in Crewe and Nantwich for all manner of business services. There’s really no need to go elsewhere!” Local businesses involved in the transformation also included Zero Signs of Crewe, the Little Paper Shop in Nantwich for branding and trCreative Nantwich for the new website.

Nantwich-based Jan Roberts of Pure PR and photographer Tim Jervis handled publicity around the relaunch. Louise, who also runs The Cheshire Cat and Street on Welsh Row, added: “Firenze is open Tuesday through to Sunday, from noon to late, and we would love people to come and see what has been achieved. “There’s something for everyone on the menu. Ingredients are sourced locally, right down to our Cheshire potatoes which come from a local farm run by our chef Jenna’s dad. They are so tasty we have given them their own section on the menu. Our offering is relaxed, modern dining in beautiful surroundings. And so far the feed-back has been great. Regulars have said ‘wow’ what a difference. Having put so much of myself into the refurbishment, I’m thrilled at the response.” The premises, formally the Swan with Two Necks pub, opened as Firenze nine years ago and employs 12 people. It welcomes more than 3000 people a month for meals, cocktails and music and dancing on Friday and Saturday nights when a resident DJ is at the turntable. For more information visit

Nantwich-based Right at Home rated ‘outstanding’ care to specialist dementia care and live-in care services. Employing over 30 highly-trained CareGivers, Right at Home continues to recruit caring and committed people that are keen to make a difference in their community. Within the inspection, which took place in February, clients and their relatives told the CQC that services were of a consistently high standard. Right at Home South Cheshire is the first provider in the Right at Home UK network to be rated as outstanding overall – the highest possible rating in the CQC’s Ofsted-style system.

Ben Selby and team celebrate the success of Right at Home South Cheshire

Adults being cared for in their own homes by Right at Home are in safe hands after it was rated ‘Outstanding’ in a recent inspection. Right at Home South Cheshire has joined an exclusive club of homecare organisations to receive an Outstanding Rating from the Care Quality Commission (CQC), highlighting the high-quality, trusted homecare they deliver from their base in Nantwich town centre. Only two per cent of homecare providers inspected have achieved an Outstanding CQC rating, with an even smaller percentage doing so in their first full inspection. Right at Home South Cheshire provides personal care and support to people in their own homes. The company currently supports 45 clients across Nantwich, Crewe, Sandbach, Alsager and surrounding areas. Services range from companionship, home help and personal

excellence. Over the last two years of operating we have built fantastic relationships with our Clients and importantly their families, allowing us to deliver the best homecare service possible. “We have also developed excellent relationships in our local community to improve the outlook for more vulnerable members of the public, including creating 263 dementia friends, supported by the Alzheimer’s Society. We look forward to continuing to deliver outstanding care and support to the people of South Cheshire for many years to come.”

Inspectors saw that people had shown significant improvement in their physical and mental health and wellbeing since receiving support from Right at Home. People said that CareGivers always treated them in a respectful way and provided care in a way that maintained their dignity. People, relatives and staff told CQC the service was exceptionally well-managed and communicated effectively with them.

Debbie Westhead, Deputy Chief Inspector of Adult Social Care in the North, said; “Right at Home South Cheshire, since its inception in December 2016, has performed exceedingly well. It is very clear that they had established effective working relationships with other professionals including GPs, district nurses and occupational therapists. The professionals we contacted told us the service was well managed and maintained high standards of care and professionalism.”

Commenting on the results of the CQC inspection, owner Ben Selby, said: “I am delighted with the results of this recent CQC inspection and would like to personally thank our team of dedicated CareGivers for their commitment in our constant pursuit of

For further information about local homecare services or job opportunities visit, contact, 01270 257347 or visit the office at 78 Hospital St, Nantwich

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Pioneering Fairerpower celebrates its third anniversary


Since its launch, Fairerpower has sought to reduce fuel poverty by offering competitive prices with high levels of customer care. And Cheshire East was the first council in the UK to sell power since the gas and electricity supply system was nationalised in 1948. Recent figures show around 78% of new customers save more than £100 when they switch to Fairerpower and the scheme has been very successful in helping those who had not previously switched energy providers – particularly more-elderly customers, who had been put off by the perceived complexity of switching. Since summer 2017, Fairerpower has been managed by the council’s wholly-owned, arms-length Skills and Growth Company. Skills and Growth Company chairman Councillor George Hayes, Fairerpower commissioning manager Sophie Thorley, Fairerpower marketing officer Lauren Tobin and Skills and Growth Company managing director Julian Cobley

An energy supply scheme established by Cheshire East Council is celebrating its third birthday. Since its creation in 2015, nearly 9,000 people have switched to Fairerpower and their total quoted savings adds up to more than £2m.

Councillor George Hayes, chairman of the Skills and Growth Company, said: “Fairerpower has gone from strength to strength. I am delighted to see that more customers across a broader geography are benefitting from lower energy costs, particularly some of our more vulnerable residents and those who may not have switched providers before.”

For more information visit

Massive cash boost for green transport links The North West Crewe Cycling and Walking Link will deliver a strategic cycling and walking route into the heart of the north west Crewe development area, providing connectivity from Crewe and Nantwich to 1,600 new jobs and 1,750 new homes, the Bentley strategic employment site (which currently employs 4,500 staff), Leighton Hospital and existing residential areas. The project includes extending the Connect2 shared pedestrian/cycle pathway from the A530/A532 roundabout northwards along the A530.The route links into the Bentley site and runs parallel to the alignment of the Leighton Spine Road and link road. It ends by linking to Leighton Hospital and providing key routes into existing residential areas in north west Crewe. Cllr Don Stockton, Cheshire East Council Cabinet member for environment, said: “This is fantastic news. This £1.6m Local Growth Fund allocation will help the council continue to deliver more-sustainable transport solutions and facilities to help deliver jobs, growth and healthier communities. Enjoying the great outdoors of Cheshire East (inset) Cllr Don Stockton, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for environment

“Crucially, these link schemes will improve access and connectivity to thousands of homes and help in the delivery of more than 3,000 new jobs at key employment sites identified in the Cheshire East Local Plan – as well as providing key, ‘greener’ infrastructure to enhance people’s lives.

Cheshire East Council has been awarded £1.6m to boost greener transport and connectivity in the borough.

“Work will be conducted over the coming year to plan and design these schemes for both Wilmslow and Crewe, which will include consultation with stakeholders and the local communities to help shape and inform the projects.”

The Local Growth Fund money, from Cheshire and Warrington Local Enterprise Partnership, earmarks £1.1m for one sustainable transport scheme covering north west Crewe and £500,000 for another in Wilmslow.

The two cycle and walking schemes are due to be completed by spring 2021. These create a model that the council aspires to replicate across the borough, particularly as work continues on the local transport plan.

The council has hailed the funding for these ‘exciting’ schemes – the North West Crewe Cycling and Walking Link and the Wilmslow Strategic Cycle and Walking Route – as ‘fantastic news’ for the borough.

For more information visit

It is the biggest tranche of funding for such projects that the council has received in recent years and will contribute to achieving the vision set out in the council’s cycling strategy for ‘more people to cycle safely, more often and with confidence for everyday and leisure journeys’.

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New hygiene and allergen products launched by Chamber member “We are focusing on the so called ‘kiss technologies’, that keep testing and analysis simple,” said Apple Safety Services partner Michelle Carter. “We are probably best known for our safety training and food industry compliance work. So, the new technologies complement our product range nicely.” Also included for the purposes of general hygiene verification are standard sensitivity protein swabs that confirm cleaning effectiveness to a sensitivity of 50µgs via a colour change at the bottom of the swab as well as surface and water ATP swabs, used in conjunction with a luminometer unit and data trending software, to confirm effective cleaning performance quantitatively and on a larger scale. Apple Safety Services, in conjunction with science-based technology company 3M, has introduced a new range of products that verify the effectiveness of cleaning to remove allergens. The new technologies range from high sensitivity protein swabs that detect the presence of all allergenic proteins on a surface to a sensitivity of 3µgs through to lateral flow devices that identify specific allergenic proteins from either a surface, solid product, liquid product or CIP rinse water sample.

The products can be used with minimal training and can easily be integrated into company HACCP programmes, making them ideal for all food businesses. For more information contact Apple Safety Services on 01270 258403 or email

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Watts triumph at 2018 Business Moneyfacts Awards The Business Moneyfacts Awards celebrate the top brokers, lenders and individuals in the business finance market, which saw Watts Commercial Finance take home one of the industry's most prestigious awards. Commenting on the win, Phil Gray, Managing Director of Watts Commercial Finance, said: "Building on our Highly Commended award in 2017, the team has worked extremely hard over the last 12 months and I am delighted that our hard work has been rewarded by winning this award. I am tremendously proud of the team at Watts for their continued dedication and exceptional customer service. Watts Commercial Finance Managing Director Phil Gray with Claudia Winkleman and Iain Bradshaw of category sponsor Norwich & Peterborough

Watts Commercial Finance was crowned Commercial Mortgage Introducer of the Year at the 2018 Business Moneyfacts Awards. The winners were announced to 700 of the industry's finest, by awards host Claudia Winkleman at the Royal Lancaster London.

"Watts Commercial Finance has had an exceptional 12 months - brokering and securing competitive products for our customers whilst our growing the team by 45%. Winning this prestigious award is testament to our commitment tohelp secure appropriate commercial finance solutions for our clients and allowing their business to prosper."



Lee Tillcock, Editor of Business Moneyfacts, said: "Another year of political uncertainty has not stopped the continuing revival in the business finance sector. “The last 12 months has proven to be more profitable for many businesses, and as the appetite for funding grows, brokers and providers have embraced the opportunity to boost trading and growth levels. "An air of confidence has been apparent in the business finance sector, and the 18th annual Business Moneyfacts Awards ceremony once again celebrated and rewarded those who have offered the best products and services throughout the last year." For more information on services call Watts on 01270 620555 or visit

Meeting the people behind the wheel InsureTAXI was in the driving seat for a crowdpulling two-day expo in Milton Keynes. More than 1000 people drawn from the private hire and taxi industry flocked to Arena MK to hear speakers highlight topical issues and operators share an insight into how they have adapted their businesses in challenging times. Hosted by the Private Hire and Taxi Monthly magazine (PHTM), insureTaxi which is part of The County Group based at Crewe, welcomed hundreds to their stand where they discussed insurance products and got to know the people ‘behind the wheel.’ Head of Marketing Claire Smith said: “This is the biggest taxi show in the UK and always a highlight on our calendar. It’s good to meet our

The event included a series of cutting edge industry seminars. Amer Hasan spoke about the rise of Robotaxis and Chris Everitt presented on EV charging solutions. Delegates also heard from James Button, President of the Institute of Licensing, while a Q&A forum looked at topical issues including emissions, electric vehicles, DBS checks and driverless cars.

Karl Garcia, Taxi Sales Manager, Laura Ellison, Training Co-ordinator, Yasmin Javed, Taxi Advisor and Tony Whitehouse, Taxi Fleet Sales Manager

customers face to face. We chatted to many operators and welcomed many new customers onboard.”

There were more than 60 exhibitors at the event which was established in 1993 and remains the only one of its kind in the country. The team from insureTaxi say they will be back again next year. For more information visit

New Crewe premises for Zen Introducing new Chamber member – Zen Occupational Health.

Zen also offers health surveillance on site or at the Crewe clinic.

Founded by registered nurse and occupational health specialist Karen Mills (pictured) 18 months ago, the business has now opened a new clinic in Crewe.

For more information visit

Karen said: “I’m looking forward to meeting local businesses through the Chamber networking calendar.” Zen Occupational Health, based at Spring Farm Business Centre on Moss Lane, offers a full range of occupational health and well- being services to meet business needs. She added: “The aim is to help local businesses increase productivity and reduce the cost of absence. “We can complete telephone or face-to-face assessments on individuals who have long term sickness absence or long term health conditions that may or may not be affected by work.”

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Businesses encouraged to join Digital+ programme

Stephen Mifsud, managing director of Direct Access

Cheshire East Council’s armslength Skills and Growth Company has launched a new business support programme called Digital+.

To find out more and register your interest, visit

The Digital+ programme offers fully-funded support and advice to help small and mediumsized businesses maximise faster broadband and digital tools - such as cloud computing, digital marketing and social media - and adapt to wider issues, such as upcoming changes to data protection legislation.

Managing director Stephen Mifsud said: “We felt our existing marketing strategy was not working, so we needed to be ahead of the game and we now understand how important it is to get our voice heard through social media and how to be consistent with our branding.

The cornerstone of the Digital+ programme is a series of one-day seminars, which provide expert support in small groups and includes a bespoke audit of each participating business’s website. Seminars on digital marketing or social media will take place on: ● 24 May - Digital marketing, at The Cottons, Knutsford

● 5 June - Social media, at Vale Royal Abbey, near Northwich

One business already reaping the rewards of the Digital+ programme is Direct Access, of Nantwich, a disability access consultancy.

“The Digital+ programme has been able to support us in a language we could follow and helped our social media campaigns go from being good to excellent.” Cheshire East Councillor George Hayes, chairman of the Skills and Growth Company said: “We believe the Digital+ programme is a vital opportunity to help businesses grow and adapt to the ever-changing world of digital tools, broadband and social media. With our support, businesses can maximise the benefits and transform the way they work.” The Digital+ programme is the latest phase of the Connecting Cheshire programme, which has been rolling out fibre broadband to more than 100,000 homes and businesses across Cheshire since 2013. Digital+ is available to eligible small and medium-sized businesses in

● 12 June - Digital marketing, at Mottram Hall, near Macclesfield

Cheshire and Warrington and is part of the Digital 2020 programme supported by the 2014 to 2020 European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme.

● 26 June - Social media, at Crewe Hall, Crewe.

To find out more and register your interest, visit

● 21 June - Digital marketing, at Mottram Hall, near Macclesfield

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It's showtime for security firm Alpha Omega



“We have a very good relationship with local police and we work hand in hand with them to ensure these events pass peacefully. The showgrounds are vast but we know them well and it’s good to have a long-standing relationship with the teams behind the Royal Cheshire County Show and the Nantwich Show. They work incredibly hard to showcase all that is great and good about the countryside and give so many people a superb day out.” There’s a packed programme of family entertainment at each event. The Nantwich Show will once again be home to the International Cheese Show attracting entries from across the world. A main ring attraction at both shows will be motorcycle stunt team Bold Dog Lings. Nantwich Show chairman Michael-John Parkin said: “Our agricultural show is the largest one day show in the country, exhibiting everything that the countryside and farming has to offer in Cheshire. “The event is spread over our large showground and our security needs are provided by Alpha Omega Securities whose advice and experience is invaluable.

Nantwich Show chairman Michael-John Parkin with Alpha Omega Managing Director Ken Lawton and Operations Director Andy Taylor

A security firm is celebrating 10 years as the driving force behind safety at Cheshire’s biggest events of the summer. Crewe-based Alpha Omega Securities is set to ensure the safety of thousands of people attending the Royal Cheshire County Show, taking place at Tatton on June 19 and 20, and the Nantwich Show at Dorfold Park on July 25. An army of security personnel will be deployed to keep crowd control, protect VIP guests and celebrities and supervise the smooth flow of more than 30,000 visitors through the showground entrances. In the days running up to the shows, Alpha Omega liaises with the showground construction teams to ensure site security as they set up the giant trade marquees. Managing director Ken Lawton said: “Our prime aim is for families to have a wonderful time at the shows and for the exhibitors, who came from all over the world, to leave with a great impression of Cheshire. “Incidents of theft or unpaid entries are few and far between but we are on hand to deal with problems should they arise. People are in highspirits and having a good time. It’s a balance to not get in the way of this but be ready to handle any trouble fuelled by warm weather and too much alcohol. Our main focus is to keep people safe. Any large gathering of people is sadly a potential target for terrorism these days and we have specialist training in how to monitor crowds and strike in the event of an emergency.

Death-defying stunts from Bold Dog Lings will be an attraction at the show

“It’s a huge responsibility ensuring the event runs smoothly and for more than 10 years Alpha Omega has supported our aims of giving the public a memorable day in the glorious South Cheshire countryside.”

Alpha Omega Securities was founded by former kickboxing champion Ken Lawton 20 years ago and employs more than 200 security personnel who are a familiar sight outside Nantwich nightspots such as The Cheshire Cat, Nakatcha and Harrisons. The company also provides site security, CCTV monitoring and keyholding services for large companies and business parks and hosts counter-terrorism courses for event organisers. For more information on Alpha Omega call 01270 258881 or visit

The sky’s the limit for Nantwich creative agency

They’ve created everything from the name and logo to the website and animation. They’ve also won the pitch to provide all the design for the prestigious IRP Awards in London for the third consecutive year, as well as currently finalising the 104 page College Directory for Natspec, the voice of specialist further education. Due to this continued success, they are actively looking for freelance design support to work from their offices and encourage suitable designers to get in touch. At ‘JG Towers’ in Nantwich they are almost at capacity with their popular desk rental service which invites other local creatives to work in the same space. Plus their new meeting room is ready to hire in Regent House, Princes Court, Nantwich.

Design and branding agency JG Creative in Nantwich have launched a year-long project to rebrand a local charity Climb as Metabolic Support UK.

For more information visit or call Jo Grubb on 01270 626624

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Branding offers a chance to ‘Shout about Crewe’

shops across town and superb owner-managed eateries and coffee shops where the emphasis is on customer experience. “We have landmark hotels in the Crewe Arms and Crewe Hall offering fine dining and where else in Cheshire would you find a stunning Edwardian theatre like the Lyceum offering star-studded shows and top quality dining. Quite unfairly, Crewe has suffered something of a down-trodden image but it’s time to change that perception in the hearts and minds of local people and visitors. There’s so much to shout about in Crewe and now is the time to do it.” Facebook pages are to be created and members of the public will be encouraged to share their positive sights, sounds and experiences. Crewe Town Council Leader Simon Yates, former Mayor Diane Yates, Town Centre Project manager Lindsay Lewis and just some of the traders supporting the #InCrewe branding campaign

A campaign to brand Crewe as a great place to shop, eat and enjoy family events has won the backing of town traders. Crewe Town Council’s newly-launched Business Group has introduced retailers to a marketing concept designed to encourage a fresh town identity brimming with civic pride. All those attending came onboard with the plan to promote the #InCrewe brand through social media channels and in their premises with stickers, posters and special discounts. Flags and road signs have already appeared along Earle Street encouraging Grand Junction Retail Park shoppers to visit the town centre. And Shop Crewe, Eat Crewe and Events Crewe is just the start. Next will be Culture Crewe, Community Crewe and Active Crewe – all helping to promote the opportunities that exist for townspeople to lead fulfilling lives. Council Leader Simon Yates said: “With the recent HS2 Crewe hub station announcement and the town centre regeneration soon to get underway, this will be one of the most exciting years in Crewe in many decades. “This branding exercise aims to encapsulate all that is great and good about Crewe for its residents, shoppers, tourists and businesses alike. We have a good mix of multiples and independent

Shop Crewe aims to set tills ringing and encourage footfall with an emphasis on variety and value as well as promotions and competitions. Events Crewe will highlight crowd-pullers such as July’s actionpacked trAction event celebrating all things transport, science and engineering. Eat Crewe offers the chance for eateries, take-aways and pubs to work together to create an image of a ‘foodie town’ offering many gastronomic delights and for customers to share tasty food encounters. Community Crewe gives a platform to promote Crewe as a clean, friendly and safe place where Town Council rangers and community groups work in harmony to keep litter at bay and help it bloom with planting schemes. The Town Council has produced maps showing points of interest. Town Centre Project Officer Lindsay Lewis said: “Our Business Group was launched in January and is attended by business owners and their representatives who are keen to see Crewe prosper. “At the last meeting, they united in strong support for #InCrewe and went away to devise some great offers for customers. Any business in Crewe that would like to know more will be warmly welcomed at the meetings.”

The Business Group meets again at Crewe Town Council offices, Chantry Court, Forge Street. For dates and more information email

New owner for former children's home

Lynne Griffin, Village Manager, said: “This new venture is very exciting and will mean that we are able to provide continuing care and support to those living with dementia. There has been extensive research and numerous consultations to ensure that the facilities we are building offer the very best in dementia care all set in beautiful surroundings. “A common feature in many Homes is the lack of outside space and this is where we will excel; with secure, easy access to gardens, courtyards, lawns and woodlands our residents will be able to enjoy fresh air whenever they want to whilst remaining safe." Nicola Jackson, Senior Village Adviser, added: “We are also looking forward to being part of the local community. As someone who lives in the village, I know what a strong sense of community there is and I hope they will bear with us whilst building is underway. " Richmond Villages are have completed the purchase of the former council-owned Redsands site in Willaston.

For more information on Richmond retirement communities visit

The new development will offer both residential and nursing dementia care and create 80 new jobs for the local area.

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Superheroes drop in on park for picnic



“We all have full time jobs and children but we are never too busy to turn our back on people that really need help raising money. “A few years back we founded the Teddy Bears Picnic at Cholmondeley Castle and handed the reigns to The Wingate Centre as they were doing such a good job of running it without us. We then needed a new challenge and put our heads together to come up with the idea of Superheroes Picnic, a family event marking Father’s Day and supporting local charities.

Superheroes Picnic organisers are planning a fun-filled day at Dorfold Hall gardens

Plans are underway for a major charity money-spinner in the stunning grounds of Dorfold Hall in Nantwich. Superheroes Picnic returns on June 17 after raising a staggering £12,000 for local causes last year including the Donna Louise Children’s Hospice and Ray of Hope, which supports the maternity and neonatal wards at Leighton Hospital. Another fun-packed programme of family activity is promised by organisers and sponsors drawn from the South Cheshire business community. Spokeswoman Victoria Graham of Training Bytesize in Nantwich said: “Last year we were overwhelmed with the support of local families who came along and really got into the spirit of things dressed in their superhero costumes! We welcomed more than 1,300 people and raised a fantastic £12,000. We’re busy planning and hope to make this year even bigger and better.” Businesses have thrown their weight behind the event including The Cheshire Cat in Nantwich and The County Group, NLH and Brupac in Crewe. Victoria, Managing Director of the project management training company, added: “There is a small group of us based in Nantwich, who have a passion for raising money for charity.

“June 17 will be another chance to grab your cape and mask and come along and join the fun. Bring your own picnics, dress up as your favourite superhero and relax in the magical Dorfold gardens with plenty of hidden surprises. We promise there will be plenty to keep everyone entertained. “We have a marquee and lots of outdoor space. Come rain or shine let’s do what we do best as Britons and have fun regardless of the weather!” Claire Smith, Head of Marketing for The County Group added: “We are thrilled to be sponsoring this fantastic family event again this year. I personally have been volunteering at these local charity events for over 10 years and its fantastic to see how raising much needed funds helps local families.” Attractions will include inflatables, face painting, raffle, donkey rides, beat the goalie and tombola plus supercar displays and more. There will be food and drink stations and a bar for adults serving beer, Pimms and Prosecco. The event runs from 11am to 3pm and all proceeds will go to The Donna Louise Children’s Hospice which cares for young people with life-limiting conditions and supports their families. Tickets are £7 for adults and £4 for children over three. Currently there is a special promotion offering a free ticket for Dad with every child’s ticket purchased. For more information visit

Let's get moving this summer A Cheshire-based charity which promotes integrating physical activity into everyday lives has offered businesses a no-obligation review of employees. Award-winning Active Cheshire aims to change people’s behaviour and habits towards being active, in order to improve their overall wellbeing and to live healthier, happier, more enriched, longer lives. A spokesman said: "Colder weather and shorter days can have dramatic effects on our mood, physical health and ultimately our ability to focus and perform. "Unlike the weather, however, there are things we can do to improve our health and wellbeing to increase productivity and performance.

“Why not take the opportunity to provide initiatives to better the physical wellbeing of your employees? ‘Physical activity programmes at work have been found to reduce absenteeism by up to 20% and physically active workers take 27% fewer sick days. (Dame Carol Black, Department of Health – Working For a healthier tomorrow (2008)’

For ideas on improving the wellbeing of employees, contact Active Cheshire for a nocost consultation where you will receive a noobligation activity review and a bespoke ‘Active Plan’ to implement based on your own priorities.

"The effects of decreased sedentary behaviour and increased physical activity are far reaching and you can soon find as the health of your workforce improves, absence goes down and productivity goes up. "Furthermore, maintaining good physical health can prevent additional claims being made on existing employee benefits, saving you money in the long term by protecting your renewal premiums."

For an informal chat contact David Acton on 07718 424135 or by email at

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Lots on the menu for Nantwich Food Festival thanks to Mornflake, Cheerbrook, Applewood Independent, and Hall Smith Whittingham. Applewood are also sponsoring the Nantwich Food Awards. “Each sponsor receives a benefits package valued in excess of their sponsorship, so there is real payback as well as support. We also have numerous Festival Supporters providing benefits in kind that aid the smooth running of the festival. Local businesses Rodney Densem Wines, Delmar and Rhino Safety to mention just a few are long-standing Festival Supporters. “Added for 2018 are Romazzino Italian Restaurants and Morrisons supermarket, both of whom go the extra mile in support of the festival. We sincerely thank all of these businesses.” Plans are well-underway for the 2018 Nantwich Food Festival. Already 130 exhibitors are already booked for the event which runs August 31 to September 2. Both live music stages are almost filled and celebrity chef Sophie Faldo Bake Off Winner 2017 is booked, with more to be confirmed. And new entertainment for children and adults is on the way. A spokesman said: “We have support from Nantwich Town Council as our headline sponsor, and our marquee sponsors are all in place. We are delighted that local companies have taken up these positions - many

Remaining sponsorship options start at £300 for roadside boards, or two boards for £500 - these are in place for six weeks on main roads and roundabouts approaching Nantwich. Full sponsorship is still available starting at £1000. The children's marquee is £600. For more information on showcasing your business to 40,000 visitors via sponsorship of Nantwich Food Festival, email Picture: Paul Compton of Nantwich Events Photography

Business support for Crewe crowd-puller Crewe Chronicle is behind the event as media partner, supported by Pure PR in Nantwich. It’s the third festival of its kind in Crewe and a cash boost from the Arts Council England will see it grow into a massive family spectacle with more art and interactive displays and greater emphasis on inspiring young engineers and scientists of the future.

acrobatic displays, exclusive cars and motorbikes and STEM workshops. Guaranteed to turn heads will be the grand parade of community floats after a call went out for local organisations to get creative and enter madcap designs. Children can take part in workshops to design a musical instrument, splat paint on a grey car to create their own colour theme, get inspired in science corner and enjoy the thrills of playground swings wearing VR headsets. Crewe Mayor Brian Roberts, said: “We are making this a day to remember with so much going on. Children will love what we have planned.”

See man and machine work as one in displays by Drum God Ulik Robotic

Adam McGuigan, Artistic Director of SpareParts Festival, said: “We're delighted to be bringing SpareParts Festival to Crewe this year thanks to the support of Arts Council England.

Businesses across South Cheshire have thrown their weight behind a summer festival of transport and art in Crewe. Bentley Motors and Cheshire East Council are key sponsors of trAction Crewe which returns to the town centre on July 7 offering a jampacked schedule of family entertainment. The event, organised by Crewe Town Council and SpareParts, celebrates the town’s role in shaping the country’s rail, science and engineering industries. Event partners also include Active Cheshire, Air Products, AO. Com, Crewe Lifestyle Centre, Crewe Library, Crewe Pledge, Crewe UTC, Institute of Physic, Lyceum Theatre, Reaseheath College, South Cheshire College, Tebbitts Solicitors, The Cat 107.9FM and Whitby Morrison.

Marvel at the dare-devil Vander Wheel of Death

The town council, in conjunction with Cheshire East Council, Sandbach Transport Festival and Fleetwood Festival of Transport, secured a £528,467 grant to boost the arts element of the event through SpareParts: Accelerate - an engagement programme targeting communities where the arts are under-represented. Free for all the family to enjoy, trAction will once again entertain with futuristic artists,

“The parade and its jaw-dropping performances were a massive hit as part of the Sandbach Transport Festival in April and we are sure they will wow visitors to Crewe in July. “From Ulik Robotnik and his technological creations to the Vander Wheel of Death, this is an event not to be missed."

Keep up to date with announcements and activities on Facebook at @TrActionCrewe or visit

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Join the Chamber Working hard for a be er South Cheshire Representa on Interna onal Trade Facilita on Voice Vo Voic Voi of o Business Busin B Busi Busine Busines Bus Bu Business Loan Start-Up Advice Local Economy Chamber Portal Events Promot Pro Pr Prom Promo Promotion Promotio Promoti Informatio Infor Informati Informat Information IIn Inf Inform Informa nfo BCC Accredited Ne Networkin Networki Networking Network Networ Netwo Netw Net

For more information, please call 01270 504700

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4Front Magazine, Spring 2018  
4Front Magazine, Spring 2018