Creating economic growth in Spelthorne, together!

Tracey Carter

Free online business support

17th October 2017

As a Spelthorne resident or business did you know that you’re able to access free online business advice via live chat following SBC’s partnership with business support website, My Incubator Ventures?

Whether you’re thinking of starting a business or an existing business looking for a helping hand, this service allows you to speak to a professional business advisor via a live chat service, saving you the time and money of having to travel anywhere.

This live chat service is available Monday – Friday between 9am and 7pm (excluding public bank holidays).

As well as being able to chat to business advisors, you can also access the My Incubator Ventures business information library which is full of useful, downloadable factsheets and documents, including business plan documents.

Find out more on the SBC website here

New role with the Women and Equalities Committee

16th October 2017

Do you know anyone who might fit this new role?

The Women and Equalities Select Committee (WEC) is inviting expressions of interest from individuals interested in being a specialist adviser to the Committee’s inquiry into older people and employment.

The Role

The Committee would like to hear from people who have expert knowledge on issues relating to older people and employment.

You may have expertise in government policy, the operation of the job market for older people, age discrimination, or the perspective of businesses in recruiting and retaining workers over the age of 50.

You will need to be well placed to advise the Committee about how to get the best range of evidence on the policy issues raised by the inquiry.

For more information and details of how to apply click here.

Centrica Hunt for South East Start-Ups

16th October 2017

We spotted this new scheme on the BQ Live mailing this week.

Centrica is launching a £100,000 ‘Active Ageing Challenge’ prize fund for start-ups. to drive energy tech innovation that helps people thrive as they grow older.

The poll, by Ipsos MORI for the energy and services company Centrica, shows that a third (33%) of people aged 60+ either own or are interested in buying a smart connected home device. Of those that already have the devices, 58% are using smart phones to control appliances like their heating, lights and security systems.

17% think the technology can improve their lives, while more than one in ten (13%) view using such technologies as they get older as empowering them to look after themselves and their homes better.

Despite the appetite among over 60s for smart connected home technology, Centrica thinks elderly people are being overlooked by IoT companies. The research also reveals that a third (33%) of over 60s have heard of smart home technology, but know nothing about it.

Sam Salisbury, Investment Principal at Centrica Innovations, commented: “Age is not a barrier to adopting technology. Living an active life as we get older is one of society’s biggest challenges. More needs to be done to engage over 60s and to develop tech solutions that meet their living needs and ambitions. We see a huge opportunity to collaborate with the start-up community to drive innovation and create new services and products for our customers.

“We’ve created a prize fund to help understand the role that technology can play as we age.  We want to collaborate, explore and find solutions to help people thrive as they get older.  We want to partner with the start-up community in the South East to address some of the biggest issues facing older people such as remaining independent, loneliness and health issues like dementia.”

Centrica is meeting the issues associated with ageing head-on, with the launch of its Active Ageing Challenge. This offers a total prize of £100,000 to innovators that help people thrive in their homes as they grow older, and solve living problems faced by the elderly. The challenge launches today at the first WIRED Energy event in London, with applications closing on 31st January 2018.

Sam adds: “This challenge is about more than just offering money. We are looking for enterprises we can partner with to serve our customers. To help make this a reality, we can provide mentorship, networking opportunities and help to create business plans for continued growth, and further investment.”

A recent report from the Campaign to End Loneliness shows that 9 in 10 people fear being alone as they grow older, while the London School of Economics estimates that the UK’s loneliness epidemic costs £6,000 per person for a decade of an older person’s life in health costs and pressure on local services. The Lancet Public Health medical journal also reports that in eight years’ time there will be 2.8m people in the UK aged over 65 needing nursing and social care, and unable to cope alone.

The Ipsos MORI research showed that 14% of people aged 60+ believe IoT technologies could help them to stay in control of their life as they age, while 17% also cited the benefit of such devices in keeping them connected to family and friends.

Find more details on how to apply  here .

Heathrow’s new blueprint for a sustainable freight plan

16th October 2017

We spotted this article in the Surrey Chambers of Commerce weekly newsletter and thought it was worth sharing.

A New Blueprint for Sustainable Freight  issued by Heathrow outlines practical steps the airport proposes to take to address the impacts of freight vehicles around Heathrow whilst continuing to increase cargo volumes

  • The Blueprint shows Heathrow is delivering on its pledge to be a sustainability leader and a better neighbour to local communities
  • Plans announced by Lord Deighton at the British Chambers of Commerce International Trade Summit

Speaking at the BCC International Trade Summit today, Heathrow’s Non-Executive Chairman Lord Deighton announced a new ten step Blueprint for Sustainable Freight plan to reduce the impact of freight vehicles around Heathrow. Lord Deighton’s speech is the first time the airport has publicly addressed the challenge of the environmental impacts of cargo and set out its plans to ensure that even as Heathrow and freight volumes grow with expansion, overall airport-related traffic on the road does not increase in number compared to today.

Heathrow is the UK’s biggest port by value – responsible for handling over 30% of the country’s non-EU exports by value – more than the ports of Southampton and Felixstowe combined. Heathrow’s role as a trading hub will grow as expansion takes place, with cargo capacity set to double with the addition of a third runway. Currently, the majority of freight movements – 2.75 million freight vehicle movements each year- are made to support the airport’s cargo operations.

The ten practical steps set out by Lord Deighton in his speech today detail how freight operations can be more efficient, responsible and sustainable in the future. These proposed steps include:

  • Using innovation through tools like a load consolidation “ Heathrow Cargo Cloud” app for local forwarders and the trial of low emission freight vehicles and geo-fencing technology to reduce emissions on local roads;
  • Investments in airfield charging points to install an ultra-low emission zone for vehicles on-airport;
  • Modernising cargo infrastructure at the airport to allow for more airside transhipments, consolidation points away from airport local roads and a new cargo village that reduces unnecessary vehicle movements;
  • Working with local authorities to address congestion points with a Code of Conduct for operators, and a joint strategic freight plan for local roads.

The steps outlined today show how the airport is delivering against the commitments set out in Heathrow 2.0, the airport’s sustainability strategy. Along with Heathrow’s ambitious plans to increase public transport use, and push forward on incentives like car sharing and taxi back-filling these steps will ensure that there is no more airport-related traffic on the roads compared to today with expansion.

Local residents and businesses will have the opportunity to feed into proposals on freight and Heathrow’s expansion, as they will form part of the airport’s public consultation process.

Speaking to delegates at the BCC International Trade Summit in Birmingham, Lord Deighton, Heathrow Airport’s Non-Executive Chairman said:

“Heathrow is dedicated to keeping the UK economy growing – but at the same time, we have pledged to be a sustainability leader and made promises to our local communities that we intend to keep. The ten steps we have outlined today allow us to keep building on our cargo strength and role as Heathrow’s biggest port by value, while restricting the emissions and local impacts of freight vehicles.

Through innovation, partnerships and our unwavering commitment to be a better neighbour, we are showing an expanded Heathrow is not a choice between the environment and the economy – we can deliver benefits for both.”

Chris Welsh, Director Global and European Policy, Freight Trade Association said:

“Heathrow’s Blueprint for Sustainable Freight is a collaborative and pioneering plan, by establishing a sustainable freight group, Heathrow will gain valuable insight from industry to develop procedures that are synergetic and will satisfy both Heathrow’s ambitious environmental goals as well as increasing the efficiency of freight operations in and around the airport. We look forward to working with them.”

 

Companies that subscribe to the load consolidation app will be able to exchange and share information about any spare capacity on their vehicles, or ask for help on a load they need to be transported. The app will work to match them, and they then contact each other offline and discuss the opportunity. The “Heathrow CargoCloud” will be the UK’s first app of its kind.

 For the full article please click here.

 

 

Do you know someone who would like to be their own boss?

10th October 2017

The SBF and Spelthorne Borough Council are working together with Inspiring Enterprise to offer their “Is it for me?” workshop at the Spelthorne Council Offices in Knowle Green on Thursday 19th October 10am-1pm.

This workshop is designed for people who are unemployed and would like to start their own business, but are concerned that they don’t really know what would be involved.

To register your interest or find out more click on this link- A4 Poster Inspiring Enterprise.

The Business Show 2017

10th October 2017

The Fastest Growing Business Exhibition in Europe takes place on 16th and 17th November 2017 at  Olympia, London

Enterprise has never been more fashionable and it is reflected at this show. If you have a product or service that is suited to business owners this show may be for you. From free face to face business coaching by Google’s Digital Garage to bidding for funding in the Angel’s Den there is a lot on offer.

After 17 years of running The Business Show they are proud to have established a reputation as the country’s leading business exhibition built on an exciting blend of highly respected speakers, interactive features and industry leading suppliers.

The two day event attracts more than 25,000 businesses who attend with the primary agenda of improving and expanding their business. Masterclasses are available to prebook online so why not check out the selection here?

There are complimentary tickets available for this event so if you are interested in attending then please register here

How diverse is your workforce?

9th October 2017

Through joining the committee to organise the recent Spelthorne Skills and Careers Fair we recently got to know Rebecca Denyer. Rebecca is the new Small Employer Adviser (SEA) for Staines.

The SEA role has recently been introduced to give Jobcentre Plus (JCP) the extra opportunity to connect with small local employers – in particular to raise awareness of the range of support available to them when employing a person with a long term health condition or disability.

As you might be aware,  there are approximately 7 million people (18% of the UK population) who are disabled or have a health condition. Increasing the employment rate for this demographic is important for productivity as well as equity. It’s estimated that the UK economy could grow by £13 billion if disabled people were included. Additionally, £1.8 billion is lost by businesses every month because people with disabilities leave because that business is not accessible in some way?

There are real benefits be made for small businesses from having a diverse workforce that reflects the community they do business in. Part of Rebecca’s role is to challenge the presumption that this demographic cannot or do not want to work and that the process of supporting people into work is costly and complex. However, she does recognise that small businesses face particular pressures and do not have HR departments that can support making recruitment and the workplace more accessible. As a result JCP needs to provide additional support to small businesses for them to benefit.

Rebecca would really like to discuss this further with SBF businesses. Please do get in touch with her directly if you would like to know more:

Rebecca Denyer – Small Employer Adviser – Surrey
Department for Work and Pensions  | Work Services Directorate
Berkshire, Surrey and Sussex  | Staines Jobcentre Plus
Ground Floor | 62 London Road | Staines | TW18 4HB
Phone 01784 231637 or 07769 913696 | @JCPinSurrey on Twitter  | www.gov.uk |