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The results are in!

The results are in!Cranleigh has been mystery shopped!

As part of the Up Your Game customer service organised by Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce, independent retailers and businesses across the village have been subjected to mystery shopping exercises this month.

Standards across Cranleigh were found to be exceptionally high, with nearly half of the 40 participants due to be recognised at an awards ceremony next month for their excellence in customer service.

The Up Your Game initiative was supported by Waverley Borough Council, Surrey County Council and Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce, in association with Shoppers Anonymous.

Businesses have been rated on factors including window displays, interior layout and customer service.

An awards ceremony will take place on Tuesday 9th August at One Forty Cafe, where an overall winner will be announced and certificates presented to the highest scoring participants.

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Chamber Summer BBQ raises over £400 for Cranleigh Christmas Lights

Chamber Summer BBQ raises over £400 for Cranleigh Christmas LightsGuests attending the Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce Summer BBQ yesterday evening raised more than £400 towards the cost of the Cranleigh Christmas Lights.

With attendance at the event more than doubling compared to last year, the Chamber Summer BBQ at The Richard Onslow was perfectly timed to coincide with the arrival of the British summer.

More than 40 Chamber members enjoyed delicious BBQ food and refreshing glasses of Pimms, and an evening of socialising with local business leaders.

Hosting the event, Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce president Richard Graham reflected on a successful year for the Chamber, with membership now standing at 123 local businesses.

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Richard also thanked committee member John Taylor of The Richard Onslow for his valuable contribution to Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce over the past year. John is moving to Devon with his family this summer.

A draw was held for the 100 Club, with Cockerill Shoes winning the £100 prize this quarter.

100 Club chairman Roger Coupe encouraged more Chamber members to sign-up for this initiative, which offers a predictable source of funding towards the Cranleigh Christmas Lights each year.

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A raffle offered prizes kindly donated by members Santa Fir, Charlotte Hunter Nutrition and Travel Retail Training.

Christine Martin of Travel Retail Training also generously donated gift bags for every guest.

Our next events are an awards evening for participants in the Chamber’s Up Your Game customer service programme, taking place on Tuesday 9th August, and an evening networking event at Rudgwick Brickworks on Wednesday 14th September.

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Welcome to our new committee members

Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce have co-opted two new committee members to fill vacancies arising.

Terri DellTerri Dell is General Manager at The Richard Onslow.

She is the youngest ever manager at Peach Pubs.

Terri has a degree in English and Creative Writing from Birmingham University and has a successful career in hospitality at pubs and restaurants in Dorset, London and Surrey.

Kate ElliottKate Elliott is Consultant at Rayden Solicitors.

She joined the firm in 2010 and has built up considerable experience across the whole spectrum of family law work works, including divorce, complex financial disputes arising from relationship breakdown and issues relating to children.

Kate is experienced in dealing with international cases with multi-jurisdictional issues and often acts for expats. She regularly deals with cases involving trust structures and family businesses.

We hope you will join us in welcoming Terri and Kate to the Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce committee as we continue to act as a positive voice to attract, retain and encourage growing businesses.

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We need your support to fund the Cranleigh Christmas Lights

DSC_3747On the hottest day of the year so far, we apologise for writing about Christmas.

However…Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce is wholly responsible for organising the Christmas Lights in the village and we need your help to ensure they are funded this year.

The total cost of putting up all of the lights in the High Street this year will be around £10,000. We have several generous sponsors who contribute towards this cost and plenty of fundraising activities which take place throughout the year, including our popular Summer BBQ on Wednesday evening.

One of the biggest contributors towards funding the cost of the Cranleigh Christmas Lights is our 100 Club.

This was created in 2000 by Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce as a way of raising money to help finance the Christmas celebrations and late night shopping evening in the village, including the installation of the Christmas lights.

The concept behind the Cranleigh Christmas 100 Club is to secure a membership of companies and individuals who commit to making a contribution of £15 a month (or £180 per annum) by bank standing order.

At the end of each quarter, a draw of the members takes place and the winner receives £100. The balance of the fund is then carried forward to the end of the year to help fund the Christmas celebrations.

With a record number of Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce members, we are keen to encourage members to consider joining the 100 Club and make a valuable contribution towards the substantial cost of the Cranleigh Christmas Lights each year.

Becoming a member of the Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce 100 Club is simple; just complete this standing order and drop it in to Roger Coupe, Membership Secretary, 3 Bank Buildings, High Street, Cranleigh, Surrey, GU6 8BB.

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Breakfast at Cranleigh School

Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce members were treated to breakfast, networking and an informative presentation at Cranleigh School this morning.

The venue for our June networking breakfast was the Reading Room at Cranleigh School, with headmaster Martin Reader presenting a potted history of the school before sharing details of its business model and future plans.

Guests were fascinated to hear the story of Cranleigh School along with its role as the largest employer in Cranleigh, employing over 350 staff and making extensive use of local businesses for other services.

Cranleigh School is a community focused institution, with many pupils and staff playing an ongoing role in various aspects of village life.

Chamber members heard about how seriously Cranleigh School takes its responsibilities to the village as a large local employer and how it plans to sensitively manage any future growth in an increasingly global economy.

Following breakfast, Chamber members were taken on a guided tour of the school, learning about the history of the buildings and hearing some interesting stories about how life at the school used to be.

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Cranleigh Decides – Exit Poll Results Revealed

Residents and local business owners took part in a spirited EU Referendum Debate yesterday evening at Cranleigh Arts Centre.

Hosted by Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce and sponsored by Hart Brown Solicitors, Cranleigh Decides was arranged to give people another opportunity to hear both sides of the argument and get questions to their questions ahead of the big vote next week.

A panel of experts with equal representation from both sides of the debate had the opportunity to present their opening arguments before answering questions from the audience.

Mark Nottingham, Nick Hopkinson, Ian Brown and Harry Aldridge covered topics including immigration, the economy and sovereignty, with questions asked by the audience, who also shared their passionate views.

Chairing the debate was Philip Calvert, a Fellow of the Professional Speaking Association and award-winning social networking entrepreneur.

Audience members were invited to participate in a confidential ballot at the start and end of the evening.

The entry poll revealed audience voting intentions of 21% Undecided, 33% Leave and 45% Remain.

These voting intentions changed dramatically during the course of the debate, with the exit poll showing 49% Remain, 46% Leave and 5% Undecided.

Our thanks to the panel members, chairman, event sponsor and, of course, the audience members who brought their questions and opinions to this debate.

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Additional panel members announced for Cranleigh Decides

With less than a week to go until the Cranleigh Decides – EU Referendum Debate, two additional panel members have been announced.

Nick Hopkinson and Ian Brown are joining Mark Nottingham and Harry Aldridge to form the expert panel for this debate.

Representing the Remain side is Nick Hopkinson.

Nick is chairman of the Liberal Democrat European Group (LDEG) and chairman of London4Europe, the London branch of the European Movement.

During Nick’s 23 year career at Wilton Park, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s policy forum, Nick progressed to Director, including acting as chief executive for a year.

He wrote more than 100 policy reports and articles, notably on the Eurozone crisis, the EU ‘Budget’, world trade negotiations, financial regulation, the EU constitutional treaty, EU accession, and lessons of the EU’s Eastern Accession for the Arab Spring.

On the Leave side of the debate, Ian Brown is South East Chairman for Business for Britain, the cross-party business campaign for Britain to Vote Leave.

He is Managing Director of Portsmouth based Industrial Maintenance Services Ltd (IMS) which he founded in 2003. Previously, Ian worked in London having founded marketing services group Fennstreet in 1991.

Ian has never been a member of any political party. He has two teenage daughters and lives on the Isle of Wight.

Tickets for Cranleigh Decides are only £5 each, with all proceeds going towards the cost of the Cranleigh Christmas Lights this year.

You can find out more and book your tickets online at https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/cranleigh-decides-eu-referendum-debate-tickets-25545826254.

Space at this debate is strictly limited and tickets must be purchased in advance.

Our main sponsor for this event is Hart Brown.

Hart Brown is a leading law firm with offices throughout Surrey and in London.

Established in 1919, their continued success and ability to build long term relationships has been based upon their unique understanding of the law and their clients and their commitment to making the process as straightforward as possible, in the most professional way.

Find out more at www.hartbrown.co.uk.

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BT Broadband Outage in Cranleigh

Residents and business owners in Cranleigh woke up on Friday 13th May to find they had no broadband. 

It soon became apparent that they whole village had been affected and this was not going to be a short term outage. 

Initially, BT reported that broadband would be back on at midday, then early afternoon, and as evening approached, villagers were assured it would return on Saturday. 

In the end, the village was without BT broadband for 36 hours.   

This is an example of a tweet from Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce member, Martin Bamford of Informed Choice seeking information which was very poor and proved to be incredibly inaccurate.   

Many Cranleigh residents were affected, some of whom were able to use mobile phones to access the Internet socially. But it was the businesses and retailers which suffered the most.  

Tills and credit card machines were affected and retailers were asking customers to visit the nearest ATM machine to get cash to pay for goods.

Phone operating systems operated through broadband were also affected and those businesses in that situation would have been unable to take orders for the whole day. 

For example, Cranleigh Arts Centre could not take bookings or calls by phone which only recently had been linked to broadband. Informed Choice sent staff home and closed its doors. 

It is not known just how many local businesses were forced to take the same action.

Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce investigated how compensation could be obtained for local businesses and retailer members. This proved to be extremely difficult since there is no clear information on the website. 

Residential customers may claim for 36 hours rental as long as they reported the fault. Business customers have to prove their losses and negotiate on a one to one basis with BT, but again, only if they reported the fault at the time. 

The problem is that most residential and business customers did not report the fault because BT were already publishing online that there was a fault as witnessed in the tweet earlier in this post. 

Rosemary French, who runs Ivyhurst Bed & Breakfast in Cranleigh, followed up on a compensation claim only to be told that since she had not reported it, she was not entitled!

It was not ‘some customers’ as quoted by BT but everyone in the area that used the Internet socially or for business using the landlines. Every service provider in Cranleigh, whether BT or not, has to use the BT fibre and copper network. 

There has already been considerable debate recently amongst MP’s about ending BT’s unhealthy relationship with its service provider OpenReach, formally separating the two companies. 

£1.7bn of taxpayers money has been pumped into subsidising BT’s monopoly and yet 5.7m people in the UK cannot access the Internet at the Ofcom required 10 megabits per second and even worse for the economy, 42% of small and medium sized businesses have insufficient broadband speeds.

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VantagePoint magazine offer for Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce members

VantagePoint magazine offer for Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce membersCranleigh Chamber of Commerce has negotiated special discounted terms for our members who advertise with VantagePoint magazine.

VantagePoint is the free monthly Royal Mail delivered community magazine, published by the locally based team at Vantage Publishing.

They have a successful track record in magazine publishing, having published local magazines since 2009.

VantagePoint champions and promotes local businesses to the local community to benefit the local economy.

Their five magazines serve the communities of Cranleigh, Dorking, Farnham, Godalming, Guildford, Haslemere, Leatherhead, Midhurst and Petworth.

All magazines are hand delivered by Royal Mail to 108,193 local homes.

The magazine is delivered during the first week of the month and is packed full of varied and interesting features including food, gardening, local history, travel, walks, and competitions.

The magazine also features their Jottings section, which offers readers the greatest coverage of forthcoming local events and organisations, and also extends the shelf life of the magazine.

The following discounted rates and editorial offers will apply to advertising by Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce members within the Godalming, Cranleigh and Villages edition of VantagePoint.

VantagePoint magazine discounted offer for Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce membersThis edition covers the GU6, GU7 and GU8 postcodes, with delivery by Royal Mail which means 23,402 households will receive a copy.

To take advantage of this special offer from VantagePoint, please contact Marcus Atkins on 01483 420173 or by email to marcus@vantagepublishing.co.uk.

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Stronger Communities in Cranleigh

Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce is pleased to be a part of the Cranleigh Community Resilience Group.

This group, led by Surrey County Council, consists of several local organisations working together to explore the role and resilience of individuals and communities before, during and after an emergency.

Community resilience is about communities and individuals preparing and planning for an emergency so that if a major incident were to happen, they would be able to put a carefully prepared plan into action, so that know they what to do.

You can find out more about this group during a drop-in meeting taking place on Thursday 9th June 2016 between 4pm and 7.30pm in Cranleigh Village Hall.

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