Category: News

O2 will soon be launching 4G in Cranleigh

O2 will soon be launching 4G in CranleighWe are very pleased to learn that O2 will soon be launching 4G in Cranleigh.

Access to faster mobile internet will make local businesses more competitive and will make life in general much easier for enterprise and residents.

Bringing 4G to the village is something the Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce has been working hard to make happen since our new committee was elected in April, so we are very pleased to see O2 accept the challenge of becoming the first provider to switch on this high speed mobile internet service in Cranleigh.

Here are the details from O2:

O2, the mobile phone network, has announced it has started work this week to bring its 4G service to Cranleigh as well as improving its 2G and 3G network. O2’s 4G network will bring high speed mobile internet to its customers in the area.

Work is scheduled to be completed by Tuesday 25th August. Subject to successful implementation and testing, customers will see the new and improved service shortly afterwards. During the work, there may be times when a customer’s signal experiences intermittent service. We recommend that customers download the TUGo app which enables them to make and receive calls on any wifi-connected device using their mobile number. More information can be found here.

Derek McManus, Chief Operating Officer, Telefónica UK said: “O2 customers in Cranleigh will soon be able to experience faster mobile internet on their devices such as streaming high definition TV, shopping on the go, and video calling. For our business customers, 4G is all about working more effectively. They can work remotely, access cloud services, collaborate using apps and so on. 4G will make everything easier for them.”

O2 is spending £600 million in 2015 on its network and by the end of 2017 will have invested over £3billion in 4G and the modernisation of its 2G and 3G networks across the UK.

O2 currently offers 4G in over 530 towns and cities across the UK. It is the only network to have made a commitment to Ofcom, the telecommunications regulator, to provide indoor coverage for 98% of the UK population by the end of 2017.

For more information about 4G on O2 please visit

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New Waverley Economic strategy 2015 – 2020

Members of the Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce might be interested in reading the new Waverley Economic Strategy for 2015-2020:

This strategy sets out six strategic economic objectives which Waverley Borough Council feel will help them achieve sustained prosperity for their residents and businesses.

Their objectives fit with the local and sub-regional policy context, with the key challenge remaining the achievement of a balanced approach to housing and employment that does not adversely affect the Borough’s character and attractiveness.

The report offers a useful context for economic activity in the borough and confirms that small businesses are the lifeblood of Waverley’s economy.

The Borough has a higher than average proportion of younger businesses, with 45% of businesses in Waverley being up to 10 years old (compared to the national average of 35%) and 76% being up to 20 years old (compared to the national average of 58%).

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UK’s microbusinesses benefit from family support economy to the tune of £64.3 million per week

Nearly two thirds (64%) of Britain’s microbusinesses rely on support from friends and family to run their business, new research has revealed.

Friends and relatives put an average of six hours a week into helping these microbusinesses stay afloat, the latest Big Issues for Small Businesses report from Lloyds Bank Insurance found.

Whilst four out of 10 (41%) microbusinesses pay their family and friends with an average salary of £14 per hour,just over half (51%) said this support is unpaid, meaning the UK’s family support economy could be worth around £64.3 million per week.

This support ranges from helping to make business decisions (40%), completing practical tasks (34%) and run errands (29%), managing social media accounts (10%) and helping with childcare (8%).

While partners are most likely to head up the family support economy (43% of businesses are helped by their other half) one in five (19%) also rely on their children, and almost three in ten (29%) use friends.

The benefit of this help lifeline is keenly felt by the nation’s microbusinesses, with the vast majority (84%) saying the contribution of friends or family has had a positive impact on their business.

Aside from increasing revenue (13%), increasing productivity (25%), making the business more manageable (35%) and providing emotional support (30%), nearly a quarter (24%) feel the help of friends and family is crucial in keeping their business running.

One in 10 (10%) microbusiness say their business would not be able to go on without this support.

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Small firms ignoring unpaid invoices

A poll carried out by YouGov has found that almost a third of micro-business owners wait four weeks or longer after their payment deadline before chasing unpaid invoices.

Only 28% of business owners take the recommended action of sending a late payment reminder seven days after an invoice becomes overdue.

The poll also revealed that 13% of micro-business owners had to wait at least a year for an outstanding invoice to be paid.

Read more about the poll at:

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Objection to Hewitt’s Industrial Estate – Outline Planning Application

Objection to Hewitt’s Industrial Estate - Outline Planning Application The Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce has today written to Waverley Borough Council in objection to the outline planning application for Hewitt’s Industrial Estate, reference WA/2014/2384.

Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce has consistently advocated that a balance between housing and employment land and commercial property must be achieved in Cranleigh.

The Hewitt’s proposal will result in the loss of yet more employment land in Cranleigh with the inevitability that it will become a commuter destination with increased congestion, a failed High Street, and it will lose its soul and identity as a great community in which to live and work.

Hewitts has been at the heart of Cranleigh’s economy in recent history and has seen many local companies grow from small businesses to become large employers.

There are numerous examples of firms that would have liked to stay but the landlords have effectively pushed them out.

You can read our letter of objection in full here:

Chamber Objection to Hewitts 23 7 2015

If you would like to submit a personal objection to this planning application, you can email quoting reference number WA/2014/2384.

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Please spare a moment for this business research

Please spare a moment for this business researchMembers of the Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce are invited to participate in some important business research commissioned by the Gatwick Diamond Initiative.

This regular online survey helps identify business issues and trends and to respond constructively to the changing economic environment.

In this survey, the Gatwick Diamond Initiative would like to explore business sentiment relating to the UK’s current and future relationship with the EU.

It will take approximately 5 minutes to complete.

Anonymity will be preserved unless informed consent has been given.

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Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce Summer BBQ

DSC_9474Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce members networked and relaxed on a balmy summer evening on Wednesday, enjoying a delicious BBQ at The Richard Onslow.

This event has become a popular annual occasion and is an opportunity for members to bring partners.

The locally sourced burgers, chicken and sausages accompanied by salads and jugs of Pimms was much appreciated by the 27 attendees representing retail, horticulture, hospitality, leisure, financial and the services sector from Cranleigh and surrounding villages.

Following the welcome from the host, John Taylor of the Richard Onslow, Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce president  Richard Graham talked briefly about the challenges facing Cranleigh businesses, in particular, retailers in the High Street.

He explained that the Chamber is working hard to promote, encourage and support those businesses to ensure an independent offering remains a key attraction for Cranleigh shoppers and visitors.

He congratulated the Cranleigh in Bloom volunteers for the excellent flower beds and displays which have added a welcome floral element to the village, for a further year.

Roger Coupe, a member of the Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce committee, said that new members were joining the revitalised Chamber every day and already the target of 100 business members has been increased to 150!

A raffle was held with prizes kindly donated by local businesses One Forty, Cranfold Physical Therapy Centre and Posture Perfect Pilates. The raffle and proceeds from evening made a contribution of over £260 towards the considerable cost of installing the annual Christmas lights.

The Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce has been responsible for raising funds for the attractive lighted decorations. The President said that each year it becomes more and more difficult to raise sufficient funds but thanked those current donors and encouraged additional sponsors from the community and businesses to come forward and contribute.

Businesses are reminded that the next networking event, which takes place on 16th September 2015, will be a breakfast at the Swallowhurst showhome on Ewhurst Road, kindly sponsored by Linden Homes.

Local historian and author Michael Miller will speak at this networking breakfast about the history of Swallows Tiles of Cranleigh. Invitations to this event will be issued to Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce members very soon.




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Small builders to benefit from a £100 million cash boost!

Small builders will benefit from a £100 million cash boost to recognise and support their important role in keeping the country building, Housing Minister Brandon Lewis said today (6 July 2015).

The Housing Growth Partnership will act as a dedicated initiative that will invest alongside smaller builders in new developments, providing money to support their businesses, helping get workers onto sites and increasing housing supply.

The Partnership will also establish a network of builders, including experienced developers, who will act as mentors and advisers to those looking to expand and grow their businesses.

Supporting small builders

In the last 25 years, the number of firms building between 1 and 100 units a year has fallen from over 12,000 to fewer than 3,000.

That’s why the government has placed housebuilding at the heart of its long-term economic plan, to get homes communities want built and create jobs in construction and related industries.

The latest housebuilding figures show starts have more than doubled since those seen during the same period in 2009 – with both starts and completions rising in the past year and the number of homes granted planning permission are at the highest annual total for 8 years.

Launched today, the Housing Growth Partnership will help small builders to play their part in this success.

The government has matched a £50 million investment from Lloyds Banking Group to create the £100 million Housing Growth Partnership, which will be used to help smaller builders to invest in new projects and develop their businesses, allowing them to recruit and train skilled workers and become more competitive in their local area.

The partnership expects to make around 50 investments, with the aim to provide an additional 2,000 homes.

Housing Minister Brandon Lewis said:

The 2008 economic crash devastated our army of small builders, with delivery falling from 44,000 homes to just 18,000 – 7 years on, companies are getting back on their feet but we’re determined to give them all the help they need.

Access to finance is one of the biggest challenges they face – so that’s why today I’m launching this £100 million commitment which will help our smaller builders fund new projects, expand their businesses, create more jobs and build more homes.

With housing starts at a 7-year high and climbing and homes granted planning permission at 261,000 – the highest since 2007, this work will ensure we maintain this momentum and keep the country building.

Andrew Bester, Group Director and Chief Executive, Commercial Banking, Lloyds Banking Group said:

The challenge of housing supply and affordability is one of the biggest issues facing Britain today, so we at Lloyds Banking Group welcome the government’s announcement of support for the Housing Growth Partnership, which will double the capability to support SME house builders. It will provide SME house builders with much needed equity to support residential development projects, to stimulate growth in their businesses and facilitate access to conventional property development finance.

We believe building both a greater quantity and mix of homes will help Britain prosper and this partnership will help address the issue of housing supply in the UK.

Brian Berry, Chief Executive of Federation of Master Builders, said:

There has been a sharp decline in the numbers and output of SME house builders over the past 8 years. One of the biggest obstacles these firms have faced is a severe difficulty in accessing finance. Without adequate access to finance they cannot bring forward the number of new homes they would otherwise.

The new Housing Growth Partnership will directly help to address this issue and the additional £50 million greatly increases the scale of what can be achieved. We commend Lloyds Banking Group and the government on their trailblazing approach and we hope this marks a real turning point in the fight to provide adequate finance to the SME house building sector.

Further information

Housing Growth Partnership seeks to invest alongside the following:

• small and medium sized house builders who have evidence of a solid track record in delivering residential development schemes
• house builders who on average have 10-100 single unit completions annually over the past 3 years, and have a proven track record in land buying, design, construction, marketing and sales of new homes
• the government’s investment supplements the initial £50 million announced by Lloyds Banking Group in October 2014
The Housing Growth Partnership will support residential development projects with a gross development value of between £0.75 million and £12 million and will offer investments in the range of £0.5 million – £5 million for each project.

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