Month: April 2018

Rosemary French’s speech as incoming President of Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce

The following is the speech given by Rosemary French OBE, new President of Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce, at our annual dinner on Tuesday evening.

I am delighted to be working with Martin and the rest of the committee to continue to strengthen Cranleigh & District Chamber of Commerce.

Our aim is simply to ensure that Cranleigh remains one of the best places to live and work, not only in Waverley but also in Surrey. We want to add value to our businesses whatever their size or stage of growth.

To some extent the position of President is an honorary position. It is the whole committee that pulls together to take on different responsibilities. We work as a team and it is delivering results. So what have we planned for this year?

Networking

Our networking breakfasts are always popular. This year we are varying this to be breakfasts, lunches and even pub networking events in the evening. Our members told us that the timing of breakfasts did not suit everyone so we hope to reach more members at these different times.

In fact our first lunch is on Monday 14th May at Elmbridge Village. They will be offering us a drink, a hot carvery, dessert, cheese and even coffee in their fabulous restaurant. All for only £15. We will also hear about the history of Elmbridge which was one of, if not the first retirement village in the UK. We hope to see you there. Just book on the website.

Training

As I said we always want to add value to members and we are delighted that two of our committee members, Julie Alexanderson and John Wright are developing short subsidised training courses for members. Wherever possible we will use members to delver the training.

We are still working on costs but we do have a super venue at Santafir on the Guildford Road. If you have any ideas for training topics do let us know. Watch out for more information.

Waverley BIG Awards

We are working as Waverley Joint Chambers of Commerce to deliver a larger BIG Awards competition led by committee member Christine Martin. It is very much a case of bigger, better and more sparkly with the Waverley BIG Awards. This time there will be eight award categories so plenty of opportunity to enter.

The launch is on 4th June, the applications need to be in by the end of August and the Gala dinner will be held on Friday 19th October at Lythe Hill Hotel. More to follow.

BID

We have also been working with the other Chambers to explore a proposal to develop Business Improvement Districts across Waverley. These have proved very successful across the UK in regenerating High Streets in particular but not exclusively. It is up to businesses themselves to decide what areas should be included. It is early days but an open meeting for any business to attend is being held on the 12th June in Farnham. More details on the website or speak to me.

Events

Firstly on the 28th April we are resurrecting the Spring into Cranleigh Saturday, with an Italian market in Stocklund Square, and our members Moooh Ice Cream and the Tiger Lily Vintage bus in Fountain Square. And there will be other attractions.

There is a significant change to our Xmas event this year. We have dropped our switch on night in November in favour of a Living Xmas Advent Calendar. We have picked this up from the Henley Living Advent programme which lengthens the opportunities for local retailers.

This will start with an all day xmas lights switch on and street market event on Saturday 1st December.

Then every day, there will be a calendar of very small events every day which can be sponsored and held at a retail or other premise such as the Arts Centre, Rowlys, Elmbridge Village or churches.

We are still making up the calendar but it will include a best decorated House competition, the St Nicholas Xmas trees event, the Santa Dash, Carol singing, Santa on his sleigh, maybe a xmas play and so on. We welcome any new ideas and anyone who would like to join the Xmas committee.

100 Club

And of course I need to mention the 100 Club. It is the 100 club which helps pay for the refurbishment, replacement and installation every year xmas lights and decorations. The Chamber also contributes from our funds but we are very grateful for those who elect to become 100 Club members. Thank you!

Partnership Working

Finally, Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce will continue to work in partnership and collaboration. With Cranleigh in Bloom, with the Parish Council, Waverley Council and Surrey County Council, with the Lions, with the Rotary, with the Arts Centre and with Smart Cranleigh on health and well being.

Being a village, Cranleigh does not have access to much funding. However, together we can continue to attract businesses and see them grow, retain our status as a popular weekend destination, as a friendly place to work, as the most florally attractive in the South East, full of interesting events and offering a warm welcome to our new residents.

Thank you.

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Richard Graham’s speech as outgoing Chamber President

At our annual dinner on Tuesday evening, Richard Graham delivered his final speech, stepping down as President of Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce after three years.

Richard started by welcoming our invited guests to the dinner, which saw more than 50 members and special guests enjoying an evening at Cranleigh Golf & Country Club.

He reported on a third successful year under the new committee and thanked Cranleigh businesses for their support of the Chamber during that time.

Membership of Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce remains stable at 138 members. Richard reported that this means Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce has the largest membership of the four Waverley Chambers.

He reported on another busy year of events, as well as lobbying, influencing, campaigning, partnering and collaborating, all to ensure Cranleigh remains the very best place to live, work and play.

Richard explained that Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce is being listened to; by the press, Surrey County Council, Waverley Borough Council and Cranleigh Parish Council.

During the past year, Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce has worked in partnership with Waverley Borough Council in particular, influencing and lobbying on:

  1. Discretionary business rates relief scheme
  2. The soon to be launched Public Space Protection Orders – anti-social behaviour, dog fouling and litter.
  3. Start Your Own Business in Waverley Handbook
  4. Contributing to the Waverley Economic Strategy, which is about to be produced at long last now the Local Plan is agreed!
  5. The Waverley Business Survey
  6. Article 4 Directions legislation protecting our employment sites. We have given a list of suggestions which are especially relevant following the loss of Hewitts.
  7. Check In/Check Out car parking, which failed to be sustained due to poorly designed machines, but the option to pay by debit or credit card has remained in place.
  8. Subsidised car parking for local employees.
  9. Lobbying against the proposed closure of Cranleigh Recycling Centre.
  10. Lobbying against a trading consent for the kebab van outside the Post Office.

Along with our Surrey County Councillors, we have been lobbying for Longfield House to include small business working space.

With our colleagues in Farnham, Godalming and Haslemere, we have been working to create a Waverley Joint Chambers of Commerce.

We have also commissioned a Corridor Assessment on the Downs Link between Cranleigh and Guildford, carried out by Sustrans, to understand the viability of this strategically important green corridor becoming a shared use cycle and walkway with an improved surface for year-round use.

Richard also spoke about the range of events hosted by Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce during the past year. These included a range of breakfast networking events and an evening BBQ (on a very chilly evening!).

The range of topics covered included GDPR, cyber security, social media, sales and marketing, and the Brooking Collection.

Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce worked with Cranleigh Arts Centre to host another successful Cranleigh Food & Music Festival in September.

With invaluable help from Cranleigh Lions and Jigsaw School, we hosted the Cranleigh Christmas Lights Switch-On event in November. Richard gave a special thanks to our 100 Club members and all of the sponsors of the Christmas Lights.

Richard also highlighted the work of Cranleigh in Bloom and its volunteers, led by Martin Bamford, which won Gold and the overall Town of the Year prize at the South & South East in Bloom Awards. Cranleigh in Bloom is entering these awards again in 2018 and remains an exceptionally attractive village.

As the work of Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce has increased, and the committee have competing demands on their time from their full time jobs and families, we needed additional help with administrative and events support. Richard welcomed Elizabeth Campbell who started providing this assistance from the start of the year.

Richard finished his speech by thanking his committee, members and speakers from the past year.

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Venue for long-term hire

Cranleigh Parish Council is advertising the Cranleigh Youth Centre building for a long-term hire.

The Youth Centre comprises of a recently modernised sports hall with sprung floor, high level heating and large storage cupboard accessed from the Sports Hall.

There is a well equipped fully fitted open plan kitchen and meeting area.

This also benefits from a large separate office which would be used as an office or for storage to serve the kitchen.

Find out more:

Long Term Hire Poster April 2018

Please contact the Parish Clerk Beverley Bell on 01483 272311 or email clerk@cranleighpc.org to find out more and arrange a viewing.

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