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The Greenway Hotel & Spa
It is with sadness that we report the passing of Peter Wood, who was President of the Cheltenham Chamber of Commerce 1993-1994. Peter was a stalwart of the Chamber of Commerce for many years and as Manager of Beechwood Place Arcade was a well known public figure in Cheltenham.
Business networking is described as a social activity where businesspeople and entrepreneurs meet to build social capital and form relationships that create opportunities, share information and provide potential partners.
The Cheltenham Chamber of Commerce would like to congratulate its Chief Executive, Michael Ratcliffe, for being awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List in June for services to business and the community in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire.
The Cheltenham in Bloom committee has come to an end after 35 years of dedicated service to the town. The committee wound up its affairs at its last AGM that took place in January of this year.
The GFirst LEP has provided details ofa call for tender for a proposed Cheltenham Growth Hub. The call is now live and is for a Tier 2 Growth Hub with funding value of up to £500,000 available.
In the Gloucestershire Echo on 1 March, Mayor, Klara Sudbury highlighted the fact that Cheltenham's town centre "is becoming like a third world farm track".
Chamber CEO Michael Ratrcliffe agrees. "We may use another phrase and say that Cheltenham Town is quickly becoming 'Pothole City', and we fully agree with the Mayor's comments.
Please find below information regarding the proposals for Phase 4 of the Cheltenham Transport Plan. Please also refer to the attached plan drawing detailing these proposals.
The Mayor of Cheltenham invites members of the Chamber of Commerce to join her for the Civic Ball, ‘An Enchanted Evening’, 23 February. This black tie event will raise vital funds for the two local charities that supports the Mayor of Cheltenham Charity Appeal.
The Chamber would very much like to know whether any members or non members have been affected by the parking restrictions which have been imposed in West Cheltenham around the railway station.
I am now receiving evidence from commuters who are finding the burden of parking close to the railway station intolerable and consequently are now driving directly to their destination instead of taking the train.
Letter from Highways England
You may be aware that Highways England has been investigating options for improving the A417 Missing Link, a three-mile stretch of single lane carriageway between the Brockworth bypass and Cowley roundabout. This is after the Department for Transport published its Road Investment Strategy 2015- 2020, an investment programme to tackle some of the worst road hot spots in the country. The A417 Missing Link was identified as one of the areas requiring improvement.
The not-for-profit Cheltenham Chamber of Commerce is offering a limited number of sponsorship opportunities on a first-come, first-served basis to raise funds for an urgently needed website and online systems update.
The sponsorship packages will actively promote your brand to the Cheltenham and Gloucestershire business community via our website, social media, local press, video, email marketing and events.
Cheltenham Chamber of Commerce is supporting the OVO Energy Tour of Britain 2017. On Saturday 9th September the penultimate stage of this major cycling event will finish in Cheltenham. The Chamber is pleased to be one of the sponsors, which is expected to bring a considerable number of visitors into the Town.
As individuals and businesses keen to promote and improve Cheltenham, your help and feedback is needed to improve Cheltenham Railway Station. Please complete and or circulate further the attached questionnaire prepared by GWR. It will assist in preparing the business case for further works at the train station, so the more responses the better.
With less than 50 days to go to the Cheltenham Festival of Cycling, organisers have released a business opportunities toolkit to help really make Cheltenham ‘zing!’ The Cheltenham Festival of Cycling featuring the OVO Energy Tour of Britain Stage Seven takes place on Saturday 9 September and features a series of town-wide initiatives to enjoy, educate, try and watch.
This year our Chamber stand at GBS17 was a celebration of our members. We took the theme of Corporate Social Responsibility and were delighted to have as our guests, Rotary International. Read more
Cheltenham Chamber of Commerce CEO Michael Ratcliffe says 2017 will be a year of exciting development in Cheltenham – from the new John Lewis store to the town’s redeveloped railway station.
Gloucestershire County Council are working with the Department of Transport to help improve the accessibility of your workplace for both staff and visitors and to benefit the local community by enabling access to opportunity and employment. Aecom and Go Travel Solutions are working on behalf of Gloucestershire County Council and would like to engage with Gloucestershire businesses to develop a solution focused action plan.
Cheltenham Rugby Club was awarded “Sports Community Club of the Year” in a glittering ceremony on Thursday 17 November promoted by the Gloucestershire Echo.
From the 1st November 2016, a new business support group will ‘hit the roads’ throughout Gloucestershire. This new group will be known as AGBG – the Association of Gloucestershire Business Groups.
New figures released for Cheltenham have revealed that the tourism economy in Cheltenham in 2015 was worth £154 million, an increase of 5% on 2014, with overnight stays up 2% (356,300 visits) and UK visitors to the town increasing by 5%.
Local charity Cobalt believe every patient deserves the highest of standards of service. For six years running the local medical imaging charity has been recognised by The Imaging Services Accreditation Scheme (ISAS) for delivering consistently high quality services. ISAS is an accreditation programme designed to help diagnostic imaging services such as Cobalt constantly improve and maintain quality across the range of procedures and services they provide.
Until 31st August 2016 advertising opportunities are available for all tourism related businesses across Cheltenham, Gloucester, Tewkesbury, Stroud and The Cotswolds so this is your opportunity.
If you’ve ever wondered how well-known local businesses developed from a bright idea to where they are today, or how they expanded into new markets, Connect Business 2016 will provide some of the answers.
The Cheltenham Chamber of Commerce will be attending Cheltenham Connect, 22 September, 10am - 3pm at The Pavilion, (Hatherley Lane, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL51 6PN). On hand will be the members of the Chamber Executive Committee, who will be delighted to discuss the work of the Chamber, benefits of membership, upcoming events and more. The Chamber is donating raffle prizes on behalf of the Cheltenham Connect event, which include a one-year's Chamber membership and a bottle of champagne.
The Chamber has run a wide range of seminars during the year offering the opportunity for members to gain a quick overview on a business topic
We have had a wide range of speakers this year covering all aspects of business from Marketing to Cloud Computing, Employment Law to Cyber Crime; Auto enrolment pensions to stalking at work and social media to insurance
Feedback from the seminars show most delegates have found the sessions to be either very good or good. Our thanks to the many speakers and business who have given their time to present to Chamber members.
We are now putting the Autumn programme together – if you have a suggestion for a topic or would like to put forward a topic to present please contact
Nigel Knowlman, Seminar Co-ordinator email@example.com 07969 043 117
Sue Ryder’s Leckhampton Court Hospice was flooded during the recent storms, which caused huge damage requiring residents to be temporarily evacuated and all the flooring to be replaced. Deputy CEO Jon Leamon said, “As a long standing Chamber member we felt we should help Sue Ryder and make a donation of £300.”
Chamber Deputy Chief Executive Jon Leamon attended a meeting hosted by Cheltenham Borough Council to discuss the unacceptable condition of pavements and walkways on the town’s high street.
Ruth Says: “It was quite a good budget for small businesses, probably at the expense of larger businesses. There were 50 changes in all.” Here are a few of Ruth’s highlights:
Cheltenham Chamber of Commerce members in 1925 were responsible for the founding of the two day competition that has evolved over the years into the Cheltenham Festival of Performing Arts and 2015 marks the 90th anniversary of its existence with a 13 day event.
Cheltenham Chamber of Commerce has registered its concerns about the Gloucestershire Local Transport Plan 2011-2031.
Cheltenham Chamber of Commerce have opposed the proposed Benhall Bus Lane and lodged their objection with Gloucestershire County Council in good time.
CHELTENHAM CHAMBER CALLS FOR ALL EXISTING EMPLOYMENT LAND TO BE PROTECTED FOR ECONOMIC GROWTH AND NEW JOBS!
At a recent meeting Cheltenham Chamber of Commerce agreed that land already designated as Employment land should be safe-guarded to prevent any further changes of use from employment to housing, and also no more office buildings should be converted to housing.
Three Counties law firm Harrison Clark Rickerbys has won a prestigious award for its support for the armed forces as part of the Ministry of Defence’s Employer Recognition Scheme.
Ratcliffe Consultants are delighted to announce that they are able to assist all the Chambers and business groups in the county, by offering discounted insurance for themselves AND their members!
The Police and Crime Commissioner for Gloucestershire is currently consulting with members of the public and local businesses regarding a possible rise in council tax to help fund the Constabulary next year. We are very keen to gather the views of local business owners and I have been advised that you may be able to assist in facilitating this for the Police and Crime Commissioner?
We are launching the new series of Business Seminars on 17th September with Stefano Pucello of Stefano Pucello Consulting Ltd. - SPC asking “The Customer Journey – Are you getting the most out of your digital channels?”
Have you ever wondered how easy it is to move around a modern town centre in a wheelchair? Cheltenham disability charity St Vincent’s and St George’s Association asked just that question of 12 able-bodied people on Friday.
Businesses in central Cheltenham are being asked to have their say on the proposed Business Improvement District (BID).
Chamber members will be delighted to know that the Department for Transport has recently confirmed some £10m is to be invested in Cheltenham Railway Station.
GLOUCESTERSHIRE FIRE & RESCUE SERVICE - CHANGES TO THE WAY WE RESPOND TO AUTOMATIC FIRE ALARM ACTIVATIONS
It is estimated that false alarms cost the UK in excess of £1 billion a year. Businesses suffer lost
production and disruption for staff. This can be eradicated with effective management of fire detection
and alarm systems. Last year, Gloucestershire Fire & Rescue Service attended more than 1,700
emergency calls to fire alarm activations where there was no fire. This diverts vital emergency
resources from attending real emergencies, wasting our time and taxpayers’ money.
Chamber member and Finance spokesperson, Mark Hunt of Crowe Clark Whitehill gave the Cheltenham Chamber of Commerce’s response to the budget which contains both good and bad points for local businesses
The Cheltenham Business Partnership is delighted to announce that it is pressing ahead with plans to explore the creation of a Business Improvement District (BID) in the town centre.
RESTRICTIVE PARKING PROPOSALS IN LANSDOWN
By Rob Duncan, Chamber Planning Advisor
Members living near the Railway Station, in the Lansdown area or the West End, will probably already know about the County Council’s proposed parking restrictions throughout the area but others, who are regular users of the Station or who park in any of these areas and walk the rest of the way to work, may not.
Universal Credit is a new benefit that supports people who are on a low income or out of work and helps ensure that they are better off in work than on benefits.
The fieldwork period for this quarter's Local Business Survey (QES) opens on Wednesday 27 May, and closes on Monday 15 June.
On Tuesday 12th May Mohammed Rahman hosted a Fund Raising Dinner in aid of the Nepal Earthquake. It was coincidental that earlier that day there was a second earthquake. Although not as violent as the first, because the initial one had weakened so many buildings, the devastation was not much less. It also occurred near the mountains so avalanches were caused which added to the problem. A further 42 people died and over 1000 more were injured.
Mohammed will also be doing a collection at the Mosque on Friday. He still has a Collecting Box for the Appeal at Spice Lodge so if you would like to contribute please call by.
He would like to stress that because two of his staff are from the Nepal area they have local Charity contacts in Nepal so the money will be going directly to whe
The Fine Art Course of the School of Art & Design at the University of Gloucestershire is offering businesses the opportunity to display original artworks in their offices. The scheme provides works on loan from the university’s leading art students to businesses in the Cheltenham area.
More than 130 Chamber Members and guests attended a Pre–Election Debate at The Mercure Cheltenham Queen’s Hotel on Friday 27th March.
For all of you who are interested in the overall economic well-being and future of Cheltenham, a recent report prepared for the Borough Council by Athey Consulting is well worth reading. The Town’s previous economic strategy is so far out of date that it is virtually non-existent and as a result Athey were instructed to carry out a review setting out an economic strategy developing Cheltenham as a business location.
A new free business guide and directory for Cheltenham has been launched this week in both a brochure format and an online guide.
If you or someone from your organisation are interested in submitting articles for Chamber News, please send your idea or proposal to the editor, Dan Harris. If accepted, Chamber News will publish the title, author’s name and picture, and link it to the full article on the Chamber or member’s website.
Long standing Chamber member, The Spice Lodge, was chosen by the Mayor, Simon Wheeler, to host his annual Charity Lunch on Monday 9th February. 40 guests joined the Mayor and his wife for a superb 4 course Pan Asian meal and to listen to the guest speaker, Dame Janet Trotter, the Lord Lieutenant of Gloucestershire.
By Chamber Deputy CEO Jon Leamon
Further to my request last month for feedback on how best to invest the £7.8 million received by the Borough Council from the sale of North Place and Portland Street car parks, I have forwarded it to the Council for discussion at the budget meeting in March.
In our role of representing all business interests in Cheltenham, we are regularly approached by the Borough Council for feedback on proposed investment and expenditure on infrastructure. I’m sure most people will be aware that the Council sold the North Place and Portland Place car parks for £7.8m last year and this sum is to be reinvested in our town. There may also be further funds available to supplement this.
The successful Chamber networking evening at Jamie’s Italian Restaurant on Wednesday 21st January allowed me to speak about some of the positive developments currently taking place in the town.
As I look ahead there will be many exciting developments taking place in Cheltenham during 2015, increasing both the economic and cultural well-being for those who live and work in the town. I have no doubt this will have a beneficial knock-on effect for the town’s many businesses and in particular the Chamber’s members.
Gloucestershire Constabulary received an alert from the Regional Cyber Unit warning of a PBX (private branch exchange) fraud affecting SMEs, community centres, schools and colleges. The Constabulary states, “over the last few months we have had a number of reports of this type of attack around the region costing victims a substantial amount of money.”
For details of this alert, read more.
As the Chamber’s Planning Executive, I have become increasingly aware of the number of buildings, and the amount of floor space, in the Borough which have been changed to residential us.
• Monday November 24, 12 noon until 7.30pm
• St Andrew’s Church Hall, Montpellier Street, Cheltenham GL50 1SP
Following the initial consultation process in April/May Gloucestershire County Council have made some alterations to the nature of the Traffic Regulation Order. Please find an explanatory letter attached (sent to all those who have made an individual representation).
Re-consultation will go out for public comment 30th October to 22nd November 2014. All relevant information will be available at www.gloucestershire.gov.uk/extra/ctptro (this will be ‘live’ 30th October)
Please send any comments you wish to make by November 22nd 2014.
“We are delighted that the Cheltenham Hospitality Association and the Women’s Business Club were the first two sponsors of our Chamber News” commented Jon Leamon, Deputy Chief Executive, “We would like to thank them for their support and invite other local businesses to contact us about sponsoring future editions which will enable them to reach over 2,000 local businesses”
This month’s lobbying work has included the Joint Core Strategy, which is now going forward for approval by the three councils (Cheltenham, Gloucester and Tewkesbury), the redevelopment of North Place, which is also going ahead with Morrisons, who are committed to the project, and the Brewery development, which has now commenced building work. The Portland Street housing site is, however, currently on hold as the site is up for resale. ;'
Jon Leamon, Deputy Chamber CEO Not everyone knows just how much work the Chamber Executive team get through on behalf of our members to ensure we have the best possible representation and influence regarding developments within our town and the County.
Are you aware that local health services in Cheltenham are under threat?
Since it started the Association has encouraged and developed closer working between its members and the recent meeting showed how much progress is being made. We have set up 3 sub-committee who are working very hard in the following areas:
ASSOCIATION OF GLOUCESTERSHIRE CHAMBERS & BUSINESS GROUPS SUPPORTS THE CAMPAIGN TO ‘FILL THE MISSING LINK’
The newly formed Association of Gloucestershire Chambers & Business Groups is throwing its weight behind the campaign to ‘Fill the Missing Link’
BUSINESS LEADERS AGREE TO SET UP NEW COUNTYWIDE VOICE FOR GLOUCESTERSHIRE ASSOCIATION OF GLOUCESTERSHIRE CHAMBERS & BUSINESS GROUPS
“At last week’s meeting of Gloucestershire Chambers of Commerce and county-wide Business organisations it was agreed to set up the Association of Gloucestershire Chambers & Business Groups to allow businesses to speak with one voice on the ‘Big issues’” commented Michael Ratcliffe, Chair of the newly formed Association of Gloucestershire Chambers & Business Groups, “We have agreed a number of common objectives and would like to work in partnership with others in making Gloucestershire the UK’s number 1 destination for new business in addition to supporting local businesses across Gloucestershire.”
A representative of REACH, the campaign to restore full-time accident and emergency services at Cheltenham Hospital, attended the County Council’s Health & Care Overview and Scrutiny Committee (HCOSC) meeting last week and came away more unhappy than ever even though Committee members did their best to get clear answers from the NHS Trust.
“The Cheltenham Chamber of Commerce and REACH are deeply concerned about the proposal for the possible withdrawal of emergency surgery at Cheltenham General Hospital” commented Michael Ratcliffe, Chair of REACH and Chief Executive of Cheltenham Chamber of Commerce, “This would be more than unfortunate for Cheltenham and would turn Cheltenham General Hospital into a hospital where major surgery is no longer performed.”
The Cheltenham Chamber of Commerce is pleased to announce the opening of its Business Centre, available free for members and at a reasonable cost for non-members of the business community.
Cheltenham Chamber of Commerce has taken a lead in setting up a broad based coalition to work for the re-instatement of a fully functioning and 24 hour A&E at Cheltenham General Hospital. The Steering Group, named Re@ch, has agreed the following overr
At today's meeting of Cheltenham Chamber of Commerce with officers from Cheltenham Borough Council and Gloucestershire County Council a number of concerns were expressed about the possible consequences of the pedestrianisation of Boots Corner.
Yesterday a number of residents and local business representatives came together to express their concerns about the overnight closure of the A&E Department at Cheltenham General Hospital and to consider what actions should be taken in response.
Cheltenham Chamber of Commerce have vowed to continue the fight for a full time A&E Department at Cheltenham General Hospital, following yesterday's 'flawed decision' by the Gloucestershire Care Commissioning Group (GCCG) to divert all Emergency Ambul
Starting next month (August) the Gloucestershire Care Commissioning Group (GCCG) are intending to divert all emergency ambulances from Cheltenham General Hospital to Gloucester Royal Hospital between the hours of 8.00pm and 8.00am
The Cheltenham Chamber Comments on Key Local Issues
Despite the recession it has been a good year for business in Cheltenham. More new business start-ups in Cheltenham in 2012 than in 2011. Increased footfall already this year in the Regents Arcade
More start-up businesses in the county will have a chance of success, thanks to a winning funding bid led by the University of Gloucestershire to develop business incubation units in the county.
Single contractor chosen for on-street parking in county
The declining state of Cheltenham's roads are a concern to both residents and businesses.