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Business Trends

International Women’s Day: Diversity stimulates debate, dynamics and productivity

The Local Enterprise Partnership’s Chief Executive, Kathy Slack, has been actively recruiting for women board members. A successful campaign last spring saw the appointment of Stacey King, Group Regional Director for BT Group and Deborah Allen, Managing Director of Operational Governance at BAE Systems- bringing the total number of women on the board to five. The others are Kathy, Linda Cheung, Co-founder of Intrapreneur Nation and Julia Potts, Leader of Waverley Borough Council


EM3 Growth Hub March Newsletter

Welcome to our March newsletter.

March has been a busy time for events at the Growth Hub, with a fantastic International Women’s Day celebrations at Silicon Drinkabout, and a series of Brexit events across the whole M3 corridor. Brexit events were produced in partnership with the Enterprise M3 LEP, Hampshire County Council, Surrey County Council, Hampshire Chambers of Commerce, Surrey Chambers of Commerce, FSB & Business South, and held across the M3 corridor. The events have been very successful and offered a platform for businesses to ask questions specific to their own business to representatives from Government departments. A great variety of information can also be found on our Brexit toolkit detailed below.

The Enterprise M3 LEP has this week launched their new South2East Local Energy Strategy in conjunction with neighbouring LEPs focused on driving clean growth in the region, more news about the launch below. Sustainability continues to be a hot topic with news below about the new Heathrow Centre for Excellence for Sustainability.

To find out more about how we are supporting businesses please call or email me on

Roya Croudace
Growth Hub Director
Enterprise M3 Growth Hub


There’s over £90 Million of Opportunity at #VFS19

Taking place Friday 29th March, there’s an incredible £45m fund from Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL) and there’s also over £50m of investment opportunities, which have been created by innovators.

Over £50m of investment opportunities come from Venturefest South innovators and entrepreneurs, including People Space, Holm and Launch International, all of whom will be exhibiting at the event. These fantastic investment opportunities range from £25,000 to £20m.


Champions Chatting

Business South are promoting their collective voice to better connect business leaders
Business South is on a mission to create an engaging visual platform for our Champions to talk about the biggest topics, challenges and opportunities facing our region.  Have a look at our youtube page and social media channels are we profile more of our Champions talking about what matters most to them. We are dedicated to promoting the region to attract new talent, new businesses and investment so this new project will hopefully showcase everything from our Action Groups updates through to bigger challenges such as Brexit.

EM3 Growth Hub – January Newsletter

    January Newsletter

Welcome to our first newsletter for 2019.

February 2019 sees the start of the Brexit Clinics across 14 councils in Surrey and Hampshire with the first being on the 8th February in Guildford and in Test Valley on the 26th February. We will have speakers and opportunities for 1 to 1 sessions around risk assessment, scenario setting, EU citizens, importing/exporting/transporting, haulage permits and ports in the area, customs/tax changes to the way your business operates in the EU, regulation and standards.

To book please check our events page A great variety of information can also be found on our Brexit toolkit detailed below.

Further details for the first 2019 Silicon Drinkabout, Global Gaming Jam and how you can access Capital Growth Funding from EM3 Local Enterprise Partnership can also be found below.

To find out more about how we are supporting businesses please call or email me on



Natwest regional PMI report

NatWest PMI reports give a monthly snapshot of the health of the economy across the UK.


Key findings of December’s regional PMI update: 

  • 2018 ends with North West leading growth in both output and employment
  • Scotland sees a renewed decline in business activity
  • East Midlands posts slightly slower output growth but a marked rise in new orders
  • North East records steepest drop in employment since 2009

Please follow the link below to view the December report and click through to view regional results across the UK: HERE

South East Results: HERE



Confidence can kill!

To be more accurate, overconfidence can kill – partly because the overconfident are usually ignorant of the dangers they may face.

But, so can low esteem. Issues with confidence can lead to eating disorders, which in turn may lead to relationship break downs and isolation, lack of activity and loneliness, depression and worse …. Our sense of self, psychological and physical wellbeing are interconnected. When our self-esteem drops, we may see ourselves and our lives in a more negative and critical light. Not only do we find it harder to deal with problems, but our health suffers.

“In the short term, avoiding challenging and difficult situations makes you feel a lot safer,” says Chris Williams, Professor of Psychosocial Psychiatry at the University of Glasgow. “In the longer term, this can backfire because it reinforces your underlying doubts and fears. It teaches you the unhelpful rule that the only way to cope is by avoiding things.”

Traditionally associated with women, a new, and harrowing, storyline about male rape in a popular soap reminds us that no one gender is immune to low self-worth, depression or sexual abuse. While an increasing awareness of male suicides and the growing MeToo movement are turning the spotlight on men – and what it is it to be a man in the 21st Century.

Growing up in the 60s, and as a young business woman in the 80s, I was frequently disparaged for being ‘pushy’, ‘bossy’, ‘autocratic’ ‘intimidating’ and … even worse … ‘a feminist!’ (I thought I was assertive!!) The MD of one agency I worked in even suggested, several times, the way to win new business was to, let me put it euphemistically: ‘lie down’!!

I just saw him as ignorant and arrogant. In fact, that simply encouraged me to win more business and take it to another agency!! Those personal affronts were commonplace in, what was then, a male dominated world. I must have questioned my sense of self, my confidence must have taken a bashing, but when you are young and ambitious these things often wash over you.

Today, online and social media means a more closely connected world; the news is at our fingertips 24/7. This creates transparency and unity, which is wonderful. But it also encourages an aggressive, bullying tendency – from cruel comments about physical attributes and fashion sense to libel … to lumping all men under one category.

No wonder young men question their position in society. Not a bad thing, you might say. But we all know wonderful, caring and supportive men; we have brothers, cousins, friends, boyfriends, sons, fathers, uncles, grandfathers – they are not all abusive, sexist, arrogant, selfish, uncaring.

So how do we support them? Or anyone else whose confidence needs boosting?

Sarah Stewart-Brown, professor of public health at the University of Warwick and a wellbeing expert, says: “Feelings of contentment, enjoyment, confidence and engagement with the world are all a part of mental wellbeing. Self-esteem and self-confidence are, too. Of course, good mental wellbeing does not mean that you never experience feelings or situations that you find difficult,” says Professor Stewart-Brown. “But it does mean that you feel you have the resilience to cope when times are tougher than usual.”

So, confidence is linked to wellbeing – and if you want to improve your health, whether mental or physical, here are some changes you can make:

  1. Build your relationships – connect with others whether socially or in business
  2. Sleep well – 7 to 8 hours is recommended for good health
  3. Nutrition – I am not endorsing dieting, just good, healthy eating
  4. Exercise – we are not all marathon runners but adding exercise to our lives increases endorphin levels which in turn make us feel happy and well: take the stairs; walk an extra stop in each direction on that commute home; leave the car behind; and use the bus or a bike!
  5. Looking good makes us feel good! Our levels of confidence have a strong influence on how well we feel – we only need to think about this for a few minutes to understand how obvious this sentence is; how confidence, styling and wellbeing are interlinked and form part of our personal brand.

Sandi Goddard is MD of Goddard Delaney, a strategic brand consultancy that works with business owners to raise the profile of key assets whether people, products or service. We can show proven success whether taking a £1m turnover business to £60m growth or a startup from £0 to £100K+ in less than three months.

The Room Upstairs events, now launched in Surrey, began over 15 years ago as a means of introducing Sandi’s contacts to each. Numbers are limited to allow everyone a chance to get to know each other over lunch/dinner. There is no membership or category exclusivity, guests simply pay for the event.

Shepperton Studios Expansion Plans





Shepperton Studios has submitted an outline planning application for the expansion and redevelopment of the site to Spelthorne Borough Council.


This follows the pre-application consultation, carried out during June and July.  Feedback received from the consultation has been taken into account as the proposals have developed.

Final proposals include:

• The partial development and redevelopment of the existing studios, within the current Shepperton Studios site.
• The expansion of the studios through construction of new studio facilities south of the River Ash corridor and to the north west of the existing site.
• New car parking.
• New/improved pedestrian and cycle links.
• Environmental enhancements, habitat creation/restoration, landscape infrastructure and associated engineering operations including earthworks and drainage.
• Access to the expansion site to the south and north west via a new access point off Shepperton Road (B376), with the existing access from Studios Road relocated further west.

Should you wish to show your support for the expansion of Shepperton Studios, I’d be most grateful if you could please send an email or letter to Spelthorne Borough Council on or at the address below:

Russ Mounty
Spelthorne Borough Council Planning Department
Knowle Green
TW18 1XB

Application Reference is 18/01212/OUT

We have considered some of the key benefits below, which you could possibly use as a guide when writing to the council:

• The proposals will improve and expand the existing facilities, which will allow Shepperton Studios to continue to play an important role in the film industry and high-end television.  The expansion will lead to a rise in the number of jobs for people in the area and continue to support existing employees and tenants.
• The expansion would allow Shepperton Studios to significantly enhance both the local and national creative and cultural economy.  By expanding and improving facilities, the Studios will be able to guarantee that they will continue to attract producers and directors from around the world.

The two points below are really why I’m writing to you.   Over the past 2.5 years as Community Liaison, I’ve built wonderful relationships with our local neighbours and businesses.  I’d like to not only be able to continue to offer support for existing charities and local associations, but extend the offer to use our facilities and amenities to a wider community.

• There are many aspects of the proposed expansion of the Studios which would benefit the community in the future.  These include the enhancement of the River Ash corridor, increased access to the Korda Theatre cinema, continued use of the Orangery for local and community and charity events and proposed workshops for local children.
• The proposed expansion will allow the Studios to continue to provide educational support in the local area in the forms of sponsorship and apprentice schemes, careers advice and events, and support for the Spelthorne Business Plan competition and Spelthorne Means Business Awards.

The support for the work we do for the community is just as important as famous directors and producers writing to offer support for the expansion for cultural reasons.

If you can spare 5 mins to write a quick email to Russ Monty supporting the application from a community point of view, I’d be most grateful.   If you do get around to it, please could you possibly send me a copy of your correspondence.

Many thanks for your time,

Best wishes,

Kathryn Maidment
Group Community Liaison

Pinewood Studios Group