The latest from St Albans Chamber of Commerce, July 4, 2013

Michael Gove visits Herts Ad.

Michael Gove visits Herts Ad. - Credit: Archant

EVERY quarter the St Albans Chamber invites all new members along to a networking event at a location in the district in order to meet the Chamber directors and fellow members, and Bar Meze impressed everyone with a delicious meze for the latest of these last week.

This is a great informal introduction to the world of networking for those who are new to the St Albans business community. Chamber ambassador Veronica Cooper of The Cooper Consultancy co-ordinated the event for us and said: “It was very positive to see so many new business representatives in attendance; we were delighted to meet so many new members and introduce them to the Chamber team.”

St Albans City Centre Partnership (CCP) is making great progress in forging a strong sense of community by creating a business-led partnership of the private and public sector within the city centre, to ensure that St Albans builds on its strengths and rises to the challenges it faces now and in the future.

The CCP will encourage St Albans to become a beacon for excellence, range and distinctiveness. It will celebrate and safeguard the city’s cultural heritage and serve to stimulate investment and growth so as to enhance the quality of life for its businesses, residents and visitors.

Once established, a key objective of the City Centre Partnership will be to achieve Business Improvement District (BID) status within three years. A BID is a defined geographical area within which the businesses agree to invest money to manage and enhance their trading environment. Money is collected by an independent not-for-profit company set up and owned by the local business community, and is spent on providing services identified by the businesses themselves.

The CCP will play a valuable role in bringing the private sector and public sector together to work for the good of our city. We all want to make St Albans a great place to work, shop and live – business engagement will help ensure that ideas and aims can become a reality.

The CCP aims to: create a trusted and financially sustainable management structure with a clearly defined vision and strategy; deliver a co-ordinated approach centred around clear communication between business, the community and the council; promote a unique, vibrant, attractive, clean and safe environment that is welcoming and accessible to all; maintain a key role at the heart of our community; and find local solutions to local challenges. If you would like further information please contact Alastair Woodgate of Rumball Sedgwick on 01727 519140 or Richard Cohen from Eternity Jewellers on 01727 868689.

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Our forthcoming networking events are proving very popular with the business breakfast this week at Brasserie Blanc completely sold out. On August 21 we have a Speed Networking event at Westminster Lodge and then another business breakfast on September 11 at Cote Brasserie who have recently joined the Chamber. All of our events can be booked online at

Jon Dean from Impellus will speak to our delegates on September 11 about the five most common gaps in business management and how they can stunt growth and shred value. Jon is the MD of Impellus, a leadership and management development organisation based in St Albans.

The company is an ILM (Institute of Leadership and Management) accredited centre that runs development courses at 28 venues across the UK for clients such as Shell, Adnams, the NHS, Pepsico, AEG, Taylor Wimpey and Clarins to name a few. Impellus also runs senior level courses for high growth-potential businesses with the investor James Caan. Meeting Jon could really help you and your business, places are available to book now so please do get in touch.

You know that saying “if you don’t ask you don’t get”? Well we did exactly that and are very pleased to announce that with some help from our MP Anne Main we have the Secretary of State for Education Michael Gove speaking at a Chamber business networking lunch on Friday, October 11, at Sopwell House Hotel.

Tickets or tables of 10 are available and will be sold on a first-come, first-served basis, sponsorship opportunities are available. The main event has been kindly sponsored by Oaklands College who I am sure are looking forward to talking to Mr Gove.

Oaklands College has recently announced a new joint venture with the University of Hertfordshire, its first honours degree business degree – a part-time honours degree in business management and innovation. This will be a new way to get the degree you need in a way to suit you. Offering learning that fits around your life, it will be flexible, local and delivered by experts. To find out more, please call 01727 737000.