Chamber launches Cranleigh & District BIG Awards

Cranleigh & District Business, Innovation & Growth (BIG) AwardsThe Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce, in collaboration with Surrey County Councillor Alan Young, have launched the first Cranleigh & District Business, Innovation & Growth (BIG) Awards.

These awards will highlight, recognise and celebrate the area’s entrepreneurial businesses, from micro businesses to large, from newly set up to well established.

The Cranleigh & District BIG Awards were formally launched and open for entries on Monday 5th October, with a closing date for entries of 20th November.

The winner of the inaugural Cranleigh BIG Award will be presented with a £3,500 cash prize and trophy at a sparkling awards evening on 11th January 2016 at the Cranleigh Arts Centre. In addition, a Highly Commended entry will receive a £500 cash prize and trophy.

Businesses can submit their own entry or be nominated to win an award. Entrants can be at any stage in a business lifecycle but should demonstrate innovation, commitment to growth and employee best practice.  It is not necessary to be a Chamber member to enter the BIG Awards.

Alan Young, Surrey County Councillor for Cranleigh and Ewhurst, is sponsoring the awards alongside One Forty, Informed Choice and Cranleigh Arts Centre. This generous sponsorship has enabled Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce to deliver an entirely free competition.

Richard Graham of One Forty, President of the Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce, commented:

“Cranleigh and surrounding villages hold a vibrant business community, often hidden from public view. Alan Young and the Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce want to celebrate their achievements and the Cranleigh BIG Awards represent the perfect opportunity to do so.

“We look forward to receiving entries from a variety of business types across all sectors, ranging from start-ups to established firms, from home based ventures to internationally trading companies.”

Shortlisted entries will be judged by an expert business panel including Alan Young, Rosemary French OBE and Nick Bamford.

The Cranleigh & District BIG Awards are open to any business, social enterprise or not for profit organisation located within Cranleigh, Ewhurst, Albury, Shere, Gomshall, Peaslake, Holmbury St Mary, Forest Green, Ockley, Walliswood, Rudgwick, Alfold, Dunsfold, Shamley Green, Wonersh, Blackheath, Loxwood and all areas in between.

To find out more, businesses should visit

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Cranleigh in Bloom continues to flourish

Cranleigh in Bloom continues to flourish ‘Mrs Bloom’ has handed responsibility for Cranleigh in Bloom to the Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce, following two years of hard work and dedicated service.

Cranleigh in Bloom had another successful year thanks to the drive and determination of Gill Ford, affectionately known in the village as Mrs Bloom, who officially stepped down as chairperson today.

Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce committee member Martin Bamford was voted in as new chairman of Cranleigh in Bloom, as the Chamber works towards establishing a new not-for-profit enterprise to oversee this and other key events in the village.

Commenting on the handover, Martin Bamford said:

“The Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce is excited about taking the lead for delivering another incredible Cranleigh in Bloom next year. We look forward to working with all members of the community to bring flowers and planting to the village, in this annual event which makes Cranleigh look so attractive for residents, retailers and visitors.

“We would like to express our heartfelt thanks for all of Gill’s hard work and also to all of the volunteers; we look forward to continuing to work with you all in the future to promote Civic Pride and capture the imagination of the village.”

The existing members of the Cranleigh in Bloom committee all expressed their thanks to Gill Ford at the handover meeting this week and agreed to continue serving on the committee for the following year.

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Phase one of Gatwick’s £1 billion investment programme takes-off in North Terminal

Phase one of Gatwick’s £1 billion investment programme  takes-off in North TerminalGatwick Airport’s £1 billion investment in its ongoing transformation is being realised with the first phase of a new departures level opening this October in the North Terminal.

Construction work started just one year ago on this £36 million project which will see the World’s largest self-service bag drop zone start a phased opening from 20 October, with a two week period of operational testing taking place prior to this date, and a one-month trial coming to an end on November 18.

The check-in hall will open in two phases between October 2015 and April 2016 – with a better layout and more space, increasing peak check-in capacity from 3,000 to 4,350 passengers per hour.

This follows successful trials of a self-service bag drop in the South Terminal which proved queuing times can be significantly shortened by allowing passengers to take charge of their own journey through the airport.

Self-service bag drop enables passengers who have checked in on-line to take their bags straight to a machine upon arrival at the airport, where they can print their luggage tag, apply it to their bag and load it straight onto Gatwick’s state-of-the-art baggage sorting system. Gatwick will have 60 check-in points with 48 of these being self-service bag drop units, 28 of these will be open for the October date.  This means the check-in process can be completed in less than two minutes.

Gatwick CEO, Stewart Wingate said:

“Gatwick has added eight million passengers since we came into private ownership in 2009, and we are about to reach the 40 million mark. This is a decade ahead of industry predictions and we will continue to grow.

“While we wait for a decision on building a new runway, we are investing billions to ensure we can grow from our existing infrastructure, but this will only take us so far.

“Gatwick remains the best and most deliverable option for expansion – we can go from the World’s most efficient single runway airport to the World’s most efficient two-runway airport while limiting the impact on the environment.”

Behind the complex operations of a working terminal building, a 24/7 construction site has been underway behind the hoardings.

Major projects such as breaking through a completely new staircase linking the ground floor arrivals to the first floor transit shuttle which goes to the train station.  The installation of a completely new escalator, an investment of £1 million, and commissioned in the UK, built in China and assembled at Gatwick, have all taken place through the night.

Other features include completely new flooring, 400 metres of new baggage belts, new lighting, new electrical and mechanical systems, ceilings, wayfinding, retail stores and IT infrastructure.

All this has been achieved while 150,000 passengers per day pass through Gatwick’s terminal buildings.

Other aspects of the North Terminal development programme will include:

•    £30 million to create a world-leading new security area opening in North Terminal in Summer 2016 halving passenger transit times will be halved and giving Gatwick the ability to process 5,000 passengers per hour
•    £21 million invested to create a world-class new departure lounge in North Terminal – more space will make room for future growth while more retail and restaurant space will offer more choice
•    £10 million is being invested to fully refurbish the North Terminal’s arrival area, and is due to open in time for the peak of Summer 2016.
•    £10 million to upgrade the North Terminal border zone – more space, new technologies and 15 state-of-the-art new e-gates will help lead to shorter queues for passengers
•    £250 million to maintain and replace facilities including lifts, escalators and the technology infrastructure, and
•    £80 million to reconfigure the Pier 5 facility and £185m to construct a state-of-the-art new Pier 1, offering new aircraft stands, gate rooms, new lounge facilities, and storage for 2,600 bags.

Join Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce for breakfast at Hurtwood Park on Wednesday 14th October 2015 to hear from Hannah Staunton, Community Management Manager at Gatwick Airport.

Come to this breakfast and hear Gatwick’s response to the recommendation by Airports Commission to consider how the UK can “maintain its status as an international hub for aviation and immediate actions to improve the use of existing runway capacity in the next five years”.

More information and booking details can be found here.

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Cranleigh, Gatwick & breakfast

Cranleigh, Gatwick & breakfastWe are delighted to be able to bring you a fantastic joint networking breakfast between Surrey Chambers of Commerce and Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce.

This breakfast networking event takes place at Haywards at Hurtwood Park at 7.30am on Wednesday 14th October 2015.

Delegates at our event will be able to hear from Hannah Staunton, Community Management Manager at Gatwick Airport.

In 2012, the government established the Airports Commission to consider how the UK can “maintain its status as an international hub for aviation and immediate actions to improve the use of existing runway capacity in the next five years”.

The question of how to make best use of and expand airport capacity has become the UK’s most significant infrastructure issue over the last few years.

After three years of deliberation, the five person commission, chaired by economist Sir Howard Davies, reported its recommendations to government on 1st July. That recommendation was that a third runway should be built at Heathrow while Gatwick would also be a ‘plausible’ option.

The reasoning behind the decision was the greatest economic benefit would come from Heathrow.

However, Surrey still awaits a decision on where the the expansion will be. The final decision is expected from government by Christmas.

Come to this breakfast and hear Gatwick’s response to the recommendation.

The cost of this networking breakfast is £10, paid on the day.

Book your place online here or email so we can add you to the guest list.

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Cranleigh Chamber Half-Year Update

Cranleigh Chamber Half-Year UpdateWith the children back at school, Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce is proudly reporting its half year update this week.

Following the election of a new committee in May, the Chamber has been working hard to revitalise the business environment for Cranleigh.

At the time of the committee election, newly elected Chamber president Richard Graham announced that the Chamber would mount a strong campaign for all enterprise in the local area and put Cranleigh back on the map.

Getting quickly to work, the Chamber has already notched up the following list of achievements:

-Boosting membership by over 50%, putting the Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce on track to achieve its initial goal of 100 members.

-Working on a joint project with Waverley Borough Council to introduce pay-on-exit parking for the Village Way and Stocklund Square car parks.

-Successfully campaigning to introduce 4G high speed mobile Internet and better mobile phone coverage to the village.

-Working in partnership with the Cranleigh Arts Centre to organise the first annual Cranleigh Food & Music Festival, to be staged on Saturday 3rd October 2015.

-Anne Milton MP has accepted an invitation to meet with Chamber Members on 23rd October 2015.

-Establishing the Cranleigh Business, Innovation & Growth (BIG) Awards with support from County Councillor Alan Young, with these awards being launched on 5th October 2015.

-Hosting three networking events for members, including a sold-out breakfast workshop about getting business from Social Media with international public speaker Philip Calvert.

-Working with Balfour Beatty to progress plans for an affordable Guided BusWay on the Downs Link from Cranleigh to Guildford station.

-Masterminding routes for a new cycle path through Cranleigh in conjunction with Surrey County Council.

Richard Graham of One Forty, President of the Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce, commented:

“Within the space of a few months, the Chamber has demonstrated what a group of energetic local business leaders can achieve to benefit the village.

“Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce is just getting started and we have ambitious goals for the next twelve months; we plan to grow our membership, host several events to showcase the village, and bring a really positive energy to Cranleigh.”

To join, businesses should visit or contact Roger Coupe, Membership Secretary on 01483 268555 or email

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Breakfast, networking & history at Swallowhurst, Cranleigh

Breakfast, networking & history at Swallowhurst, CranleighCranleigh business owners were treated to a fantastic talk by local historian Michael Miller at the Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce monthly networking meeting on Wednesday morning.

Breakfast was kindly provided by Linden Homes in the showhome at its flagship development, Swallowhurst, on Bookhurst Road, which was formerly home to the Swallow Tiles factory.

In those luxurious and spatial surroundings, 25 local business people had the opportunity to network before sitting down to hear from Michael Miller, chairman of the Cranleigh History Society.

The history of Swallow’s Tiles Company from 1860 till its 2008 closure was the subject of his presentation.

The audience learned that until the 1950’s the clay was dug by hand, that their handmade tiles took 13 weeks to dry before firing and that manufacturing and warehousing conditions remained almost exactly as 100 years earlier right up until closure when it was still in the ownership of the Swallow family.

There were also many pictures of former employees who had worked there all their lives through a 1970’s strike, both in freezing and then overheated conditions. It was a tough working life for them.

Following a question and answer session, the assembled guests toured the five double bedroom show home.

The next breakfast networking event takes place on Wednesday 14th October at 7.30am, at the Hurtwood Polo Park where the speaker will be Hannah Staunton from Gatwick Airport.

This is a joint event with Surrey Chambers of Commerce and tickets are available via their website at

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Cranleigh in Bloom 2015 Prize Giving Tea Party

Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce was pleased to be invited to the Cranleigh in Bloom 2015 Prize Giving Tea Party at Notcutts Garden Centre this afternoon.

Cranleigh in Bloom has been such a big success this year, with thanks to the incredible support of the volunteers, under the expert leadership of Gill “Mrs Ford” Bloom.

The project has promoted Civic Pride, encouraged people to get involved in their community and brought people together of all ages and of all abilities. It has been fabulous that so many of the shops have taken part and that the charity shops have been supported to take part.

Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce is already looking forward to Cranleigh in Bloom 2016, when the Chamber will be working with volunteers to bring stunning floral displays to the village.

Here are some photos from the Cranleigh in Bloom Prize Giving Tea Party this afternoon.

DSC_1803 DSC_1806 DSC_1807 DSC_1808 DSC_1809 DSC_1811 DSC_1814 DSC_1815 DSC_1816 DSC_1825 DSC_1826 DSC_1832

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Office to let in Cranleigh

Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce member Michael Wilson Restorations has an office to let in Cranleigh from 1st October within their offices in Cranleigh.

Kent House

The room is £900 per quarter (ie £300/month) to include all utilities, council tax, cleaning etc. also free use of the kitchenette and other facilities.

Please call Michael Wilson on 01483 271733/271766 or email to more details.


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Memorable Cranleigh telephone number up for grabs

Memorable Cranleigh telephone number up for grabsCranleigh Chamber of Commerce member Robert Isherwood-Crook has a telephone number he no longer needs.

As it’s a memorable one, he thought a Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce member might like to take it over.

There’s no cost for the number though there may be to install it, dependent on whether it is fixed line or VoIP, and it would need to stay with his reseller for a minimum of 12 months. Robert tells us call costs are not exorbitant.

The number is 01483 271000.

If this is of interest, please leave a comment below and we will put you in touch with Robert directly.

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The first ever Great Cranleigh Bake off in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support

The first ever Great Cranleigh Bake off in aid of Macmillan Cancer SupportRolling pins at the ready – Linden Homes and Maddalenas to host the first ever Great Cranleigh Bake off in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support!

Do you have what it takes to be crowned Cranleigh’s Star Baker? Could your baked goods give Mary Berry a run for her money? If so then the first ever Great Cranleigh Bake Off is the event for you!

Hosted by Linden Homes and Maddalenas, the event will be open to locals of all ages with all proceeds going to Macmillan Cancer Support as part of its ‘World’s Biggest Coffee Morning’ campaign.

In keeping with the UK’s favourite Wednesday night television show, entrants to the Great Cranleigh Bake Off can enter their creations into three categories; the Show Stopper, the Technical Challenge or the Signature Bake.

For the Show Stopper category entrants must create a novelty cake with a ‘House’ theme while those who enter the Technical Challenge must battle it out to produce the perfect pastry. The last of the categories will be for children only and split into two age ranges; 6-8 and 9-12, with participants creating their best signature cupcakes.

Entries will be judged on Saturday, 26th September 2015 at Swallowhurst, a development in Cranleigh by Linden Homes in partnership with Wates Developments, which comprises a collection of four, five and six-bedroom Arts and Craft-style homes, set in 33 acres of stunning historic woodland.

Don’t miss out on your chance to take home the title, rise to the challenge and create a bake to be proud of!

It’s a piece of cake to enter, simply fill out an entry form, which can be collected from Maddalenas Café Tea Room on Cranleigh High Street between 4th and 19th September, and pay the entry fee of £5.

Entrants will then be asked to present their creations at the Swallowhurst development, off Bookhurst Road, between 10am and 12 noon on Saturday 26th September, with the winners being announced at 4pm.         

Macmillan Cancer Support provides invaluable practical, financial and emotional support to people diagnosed with cancer. As well as supporting cancer patients Macmillan helps carers, families and communities, doing everything from funding nurses and other healthcare professionals to providing precious time off for carers.

For more information on the Great Cranleigh Bake Off visit

Entry forms can be collected from Maddalenas Café Tea Room, 6 Bank Buildings, 159 High Street, Cranleigh.

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