Column: The latest from St Albans Chamber of Commerce, April 11

Anti-incinerator meeting at Radlett Centre

Anti-incinerator meeting at Radlett Centre - Credit: Archant

AS we say farewell to the Iron Lady this week I have to reflect on the life of the country’s longest-serving and only female Prime Minister.

Margaret Thatcher was the daughter of a shopkeeper who studied at Oxford before becoming the MP for Finchley prior to beating Jim Callaghan and moving into Number 10.

Despite the varying views about Margaret Thatcher’s policies, many of which were very unpopular, as a woman in business I have to respect her achievements and the significance of what she represents for women today – someone who was strong-minded, hard-working, inspiring and innovative.

Anne Main, MP for St Albans, said: “I am deeply saddened to hear of the death of Baroness Thatcher who I had the pleasure of meeting on several occasions. She came from an ordinary hardworking background and I think she was and is an inspiration to many young women. She was my political inspiration and changed Britain for the better; I think it will be a long time before we see another leader of her political stature.”

Anne will be speaking to our delegates on Wednesday, May 8, at OA’s Rugby club on the Harpenden Road at our next Business Breakfast. There are already 90 local business representatives attending and only 30 places left. If you would like to attend and listen to Anne’s views on planning in relation to getting the economy moving do get in touch to reserve your place on our online store using this link:

The Chamber is in full swing preparing for our biggest event of the year the famous St George’s Day Lunch – sponsored by Clydesdale Bank and held at Sopwell house Hotel next Friday, April 19. Our guest speaker this year is Terry Waite CBE who I am sure will receive a very warm and respectful welcome to St Albans next week.

As always the event is a complete sell-out and feels like the first big outing of spring for the business community – networking at its best, lots of client entertaining, fundraising and spending the whole afternoon with like-minded business people exploring opportunities to use each other’s services. Our sponsors this year are Clydesdale Bank, Debenhams Ottaway, Rumball Sedgwick, Grant Thornton UK, Hertfordshire Business Independent, Visionary Accountants, Rayden Solicitors, Giant Cycle Stores, PwC and My Mustard.

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In addition, we ask for support from local companies donating items for our charity auction and raffle, this year we are supporting EMMAUS and would like to take the opportunity to thank the following people and businesses: St Michael’s Manor Hotel, Eternity Jewellers, Gallery Rouge, Hertfordshire Auctions, The Arch Hotel, Solario Racing, Rayner Essex, Nuffield Health St Albans, Amthal Security, Verulamium Spa, Eve & Adam, The Alban Arena, Solutions Inc, Luton Hoo, Brocket Hall, Hanbury Manor, Centurion Golf, Shendish Manor, The Peahen, The Bean Tree, Jamie’s Italian, Darcy’s, Freddie’s, Bar Meze, Carluccio’s, Tomoko Spirits Boutique and the New Zealand Golf Club. Your support helps us enormously.

We welcome the following businesses to the Chamber: Centurion Golf, Bar Meze, Lindford Consulting and Waitrose. Hopefully representatives from each of these new members will attend our speed networking evening on Wednesday, May 21, at Westminster Lodge.

Speed networking really is the fastest and most cost-effective way to positively promote your business – and it’s really good fun! It works like speed dating – only you make lots of new business contacts, not romantic ones! Get more business fast – book now for Business Speed Networking hosted by June Cory of My Mustard. In fact, you’ll make more business contacts in just one evening of speed networking with us than in weeks of what we call ordinary “slow” business networking. It’s remarkably cost-effective and gets you great results for your business.

Many people tend to gravitate towards those they may already know at networking events, never getting the opportunity to meet others who could be great business contacts. Come along to this event and meet every single delegate! Market your business effectively and enjoy a buffet and a glass of wine at this superb new Chamber venue.

All delegates will receive a tour of the facilities and will be entered into a draw for treatment at the in-house Verulamium Spa. We only have around 20 places left so come on, step out of the comfort zone and get involved!