About Chesterfield

New Chesterfield business provides hours of fun with Nintendo Switch consoles and giant golf simulator

A new business open in Chesterfield promises to provide people of all ages with fun activities, with the ability to host huge multiplayer games on Nintendo Switch consoles, along with a state-of-the-art golf simulator.

Leisure Pod is based at Tapton Park Golf Course, providing people of all abilities the chance to work on their swing indoors when the conditions outdoors are less than favourable.

The golf simulator technology transports players virtually to some of the world’s most famous courses, such as The Belfry. It can be booked by more serious players looking to perfect their game, or those looking to have a bit of fun.

Leisure Pod can also be booked for parties, with youngsters (or those young at heart!) able to play on Switch Games such as Ring Fit, Just Dance and Mario Kart.

The venue is kitted out with gaming chairs for the ultimate immersive experience. Disco lights are also provided, so the room can also be used for other functions, parties and activities.

Speaking recently on The Chesterfield Show Podcast, founder Kelvin Wilson said: “Back during the first lockdown I bought a golf simulator for personal use.

“But then I quickly realised with the help of my family that it could be a cinema, we could hook Nintendo Switch consoles up to it, put disco lights in and use it as a party space; and that’s how Leisure Pod was born.

“The venue is brilliant for corporate parties, kids parties and individual use too. The reason we chose Nintendo Switch is because my background is in health and fitness. I want people to be active.”

Kelvin also has optimism for other leisure businesses in the town which have opened recently in the wake of the pandemic.

He said: “The leisure industry, like every industry during Covid has taken a massive hit, but I think that coming out of it now, it is definitely going to flourish.

“Golf has had a massive uptake so I want to keep that golf offer for when it gets dark and the weather isn’t great outside. We are not elitist in this room, I don’t care if people haven’t picked a golf club up in their life; It is about the enjoyment.”

Leisure Pod also has the ability to bring Nintendo Switch parties to your house or other external venues. For more information about the new business, go to: https://leisurepodhire.com/


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Chesterfield’s MTM Products scoops top industry award

Long-standing medical graphics specialist, MTM Products, is celebrating after being named Industrial Graphics Specialists Company of the Year by a leading industry publication.

MTM were handed the prestigious award by Industrial Process News for ‘helping its existing and potential customers establish an optimum cost-effective solution for their requirements’. The Derbyshire firm has 40 years’ experience in manufacturing and supplying labels, graphic overlays, bespoke safety signage to parts manufacturers in the UK and EU.

A lot of MTM’s focus in 2021 has been supporting the medical sector with bespoke products and they are proud to have helped long-standing customers over the past 18 months. To support the medical sector, MTM has produced UDI and brand labelling for medical device manufacturers, graphic overlays for medical device control panels and nurse call handsets, as well as hygiene and safety labels for hospitals, care homes and industrial companies.

MTM’s focus now is solidifying its reputation within the sector so it can provide cost effective, regulated bespoke graphics solutions in the years to come.

Ian Greenaway, Managing Director of MTM Products, commented: “We are delighted to have received this award and we feel our achievement is down to hard work and the strong relationships built with clients over the years. I’d like to thank our team for their incredible efforts.

“It has been a privilege supporting our clients within the medical industry during these challenging times and we will continue to offer the same quality of service across other industries that are starting to get back on their feet.”

Find out more about MTM Products at www.mtmproducts.co.uk

MTM Products supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 190 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

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Robinson partners with The History of Parliament Trust to celebrate 300 years of Leadership and Innovation

Robinson – the manufacturer specialising in value-added custom packaging – is the proud partner of a new publication to celebrate the best of British leadership, launched this week with The History of Parliament Trust at Westminster Abbey.

Robinson was selected to feature by The History of Parliament Trust – one of the most respected and authoritative research projects in British history. Entitled ‘300 Years of Leadership and Innovation’ the book is produced in partnership with leading publisher St James’s House and written by an editorial team of distinguished academics and award-winning authors. The beautifully designed, fully illustrated, 600-page hardback publication is being launched to coincide with the 300th anniversary of the appointment of Britain’s first prime minister, Robert Walpole, in 1721, and in the year of Her Majesty the Queen’s 95th birthday.

The book is presented in two volumes with expertly written articles on those who have shaped British society, past and present: from Walpole to Cromwell, Churchill to Blair, The Queen and Prince Charles to captains of industry and those pushing the boundaries of innovation.

The team at Robinson were interviewed for their article, which is included in the second volume dedicated to organisations leading in sustainability.

CEO Dr Helene Roberts says: “At a time when many businesses are seeking to align themselves with sustainable values, Robinson is a rare example of a company that has such principles embedded into its behaviour from the very beginning. The business was founded in 1839 by John Bradbury Robinson to create boxes for medical supplies, such as pills and ointments, but Robinson was equally concerned with employee welfare. He bought sports grounds for his staff and the local town of Chesterfield, created pension schemes, and provided access to fair pay, housing and health care.”

That longstanding approach has stood Robinson in good stead as time has progressed. The company now develops a range of plastic and paperboard packaging for the food, homecare, personal care & beauty and luxury gift markets. Through all this change, the company continues to collaborate with the community, working with local schools and colleges to develop apprentices with the specialist technical skills, also engaging with the wider population about the importance of sustainability and circular economy.

Dr Roberts continues: “We work with the local economy and waste-management companies to source recycled plastics and paperboard to use in our packaging. Here the size of the company is very helpful. As a small business, Robinson maintains speed of execution and is a provoker of change, so while big businesses can do the research, we are more responsive and agile enough to integrate new technologies into existing processes. Businesses like ours have a great advantage as our agility and impact of change is nothing like the impact of change in a big business.”

“What sets us apart is how we do business,” says Dr Roberts. “We go above and beyond, whether it’s the way we treat our staff or how we service our customers. We have combined that original mindset with the speed with which we can operate and how we collaborate – that drives our behaviour and explains our success.”

Robinson supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 190 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

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Chesterfield wins Gold in East Midlands In Bloom

Chesterfield has won Gold in the small city category at the East Midlands In Bloom Awards.

Representatives from the Chesterfield In Bloom committee and Chesterfield Borough Council were presented with the award at a ceremony on Wednesday 22 September.

They were also presented with a Judge’s Award for the development of Edinburgh Road Pocket Park and received commendations in the Least Littered and the Wildlife and Conservation Area categories.

Councillor Jill Mannion-Brunt, Chesterfield Borough Council’s cabinet member for health and wellbeing, said: “It’s fantastic to receive this recognition for our marvellous floral displays. It is a real testament to the hard work of both local volunteers and our officers in ensuring our borough is a bright and beautiful place to live, with lots of fantastic green spaces for everyone to enjoy.”

Chris Turner, chair of the Chesterfield In Bloom committee, said: “I’m delighted that we’ve been recognised for all our hard work over the last year. It takes a lot of effort from many different community groups and the council to ensure the borough is looking its best in time for judging. In Chesterfield we have lots of great green spaces and the work done helps ensure these are looking their best.”

Judging for East Midlands In Bloom took place in July and the judges were taken on a tour of the borough, starting in Queen’s Park, they visited the town centre, Holmebrook Valley Country Park, the Britannia Inn, Hunloke Allotments, Brimington Circle and the new pocket park on Edinburgh Road Park.

Edinburgh Road Pocket Park was completed earlier this year and features a number of raised beds that have been planted with wildflowers and plants to support pollinators like bees, new paving and local urban artist Peter Barber has created a wall mural that celebrates nature behind the raised beds.

Chesterfield is also competing in Britain In Bloom and will find out the results later this year.

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Weightron Bilanciai partners with the world’s first football club, Sheffield FC

Sheffield FC (The World’s First Football Club) has welcomed Chesterfield Champion, Weightron Bilanciai Ltd as the club’s community and brand partner.

The club, founded back in 1857 and based at The Coach and Horses Ground in Dronfield has partnered with the manufacturer, which will provide direct support to women’s and junior squads. They include:

  • Junior Disability Teams – Under 12’s & Under 16’s
  • Women’s Development Team
  • Under 18s Team
  • Girls Under 18’s – 2 teams

Richard Sheldon (General Manager/Club Secretary) said “This is an amazing and integral partnership for not only the club as a whole, but in particular our community teams. This will provide new kit and equipment for every community team we have and will support our amazing SFC Women Development, SFC Junior Disability and Under 18’s boys.

“This will allow the club to continue its development and strengthen it’s presence in the local community and increase participation in football for a wide range of variations of the game.”

“It’s been a pleasure to work with Nick Catt in putting together this partnership and it’s clear that Weightron Bilanciai Ltd are committed and pride themselves in supporting integral community projects in the local area.”

Nick Catt, Managing Director at Weightron Bilanciai Ltd. said: “We are delighted and excited to be partnering with Sheffield FC for the 2020/21 seasons, we at Weightron Bilanciai recognise and support the work that Sheffield FC are doing and their role in the local community, we feel it is even more important in times that we are all facing together today to keep that community outreach and support going.”

The company is the UK’s leading manufacturer of weighbridges, industrial weighing equipment, process weighing systems and software. Find out more. 

Weightron Bilanciai supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 190 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

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Volunteers required for the 2021 Redbrik Foundation Chesterfield 10k

Charity partners of the 2021 Redbrik Foundation Chesterfield 10k are on the lookout for volunteers to get involved with this year’s event, which takes place on 17th October, beginning at 10am from Queen’s Park, Chesterfield.

Volunteer marshals will help to play a key role in the success of the event and will be stationed at various points around the 10k course, assisting and supporting participants, local residents and spectators.

John Timms, Event Director, said: “Due to the pandemic cancelling the 2020 event, we are eager to make this year’s 10k memorable whilst fundraising in support of the local charities; Ashgate Hospicecare, Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice and The Redbrik Foundation.

“We are calling on volunteers to support Ashgate Hospicecare and Bluebell Wood and all the runners, cheer them on and get them around the course safely.

“The 10k is also a great way to gather the local communities back together again after a difficult past year during the pandemic and what better way to come together than supporting these charities that provide extremely valuable services.”

Carl Jones, Fundraising Manager at Ashgate Hospicecare, added: “I would like to personally encourage individuals to take the opportunity to get involved.

“If you can spare a few hours, it’s such a rewarding experience to witness the determination of the runners, as well as the amazing community spirit of the supporting locals.

“Access to marshal points is very straightforward and all volunteers are well looked after before and during the race.”

If you are aged 18 or older and are interested in volunteering at the 2021 Redbrik Foundation Chesterfield 10k, contact the events team at Ashgate Hospicecare on 01246 233404 or email events@ashgatehospicecare.org.uk.

The Redbrik Foundation Chesterfield 10k will take in some of Chesterfield’s most prominent landmarks, starting and finishing in the famous Queen’s Park.

You can find out more about the event in a conversation with Event Director, John Timms and The Redbrik Foundation’s David Cooper on the latest episode of The Chesterfield Show Podcast, now available on Spotify.

Redbrik  supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 190 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.


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Shorts launches new microsite to support businesses with R&D tax relief

The Radius team at Shorts Chartered Accountants has launched a new R&D tax relief microsite to help boost the finances of local businesses.

The microsite is designed to help raise greater awareness of R&D tax reliefs, which are generous, government-backed tax breaks for innovative companies. This tax relief is often worth around 25% of qualifying R&D expenditure.

As the region’s business community continues to adapt to the ongoing difficulties presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, Radius is encouraging businesses to check their eligibility, which they can do for free by way of a 30-minute consultation.

R&D tax relief is one of the most significant government-backed tax reliefs available today, but many companies do not realise they qualify.

Whether local SMEs innovated in order to survive repeated lockdowns, furloughed staff and remote working infrastructure, or if they plan to develop innovative new products, services or solutions to bounce back for 2021-22, R&D tax relief is an incredibly valuable cashflow tool.

Chesterfield and wider Derbyshire businesses can visit the new microsite for detailed information of how R&D tax relief works, information on whether their business qualifies, and a free calculator to estimate how much of a tax saving they could make.

With a long-standing heritage of over 130 years, Shorts has grown from a local business to a nationally recognised award-winning firm. Find out more about the company here.

To find a wide range of business support available in Chesterfield, including details on how to access the innovative Chesterfield Digital High Street scheme, go to: https://www.chesterfield.co.uk/business/business-support/

Entrepreneurs and start-up businesses can also receive funding through the Vision Derbyshire scheme, as part of efforts locally to encourage more people to set up their own companies.

Shorts supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 190 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

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Week-long initiative launched to help people feel more connected

A project aiming to break down the barriers around ‘social connectedness’ has launched an initiative encouraging people to share what they have done to feel less lonely and isolated.

Derbyshire Voluntary Action’s (DVA) Feeling Connected project has launched ‘Feeling Connected Week’, taking place between 25 September and 2 October.

The aim of the initiative is to inspire people to talk about what they have done to make themselves or others feel more connected, as well as encouraging people to come together and reconnect as group, whether it be with colleagues, friends or a social or special interest group.

The week also aims to encourage those who are struggling with feelings of loneliness and isolation to get in touch for support.

Debbie Fennell, Social Connectedness Development Worker at DVA, said: “This has been such a difficult and lonely year for so many people. As restrictions lift we want to encourage people to get together more and help to reduce those feelings of social isolation that many people have struggled with during the pandemic. This is where the idea of Feeling Connected Week came from.

“Whether you are meeting with friends, have re-grouped with your social or special interest group or are having a team meeting with colleagues, or maybe you run or lead a group and haven’t met for some time but would really like to get going again.  This could be the perfect opportunity to invite everyone to reconnect.

“We’re really looking forward to seeing and hearing about the positive impact that reconnecting with others has had on people and what they have been doing to support one another. But also it’s a great opportunity for us to provide further support to those who might still be struggling with loneliness and isolation.”

Feeling Connected project aims to raise the profile of the benefits of being socially connected, raise awareness of existing services that support social connectedness and identify interventions, initiatives, and activities to assist people to feel socially connected.

The project is a multi-agency Health and Wellbeing Partnership project in Chesterfield and North East Derbyshire, led by DVA. DVA, which has created a network of more than 300 organisations with the aim of making the voluntary sector stronger and more joined up, is this year celebrating its 30th anniversary this year after forming in 1991.

People can share their stories on social media of what they are doing to help themselves and others feel more connected during Feeling Connected Week by using the hashtags #FeelingConnected and #feelingconnectedweek.

For more information about the Feeling Connected Week visit https://dva.org.uk/feeling-connected-week or contact Debbie by email at debbie@DVA.org.uk or phone 07547342251.

Derbyshire Voluntary Action supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 190 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

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Furniture and lighting firm chooses Markham Vale for its northern base.

Aver Property has confirmed a 224,000 sq ft deal with one of the UK’s biggest furniture companies at Markham Vale.

The deal will see Gallery Direct take the Orion 1 unit on Seymour Link Road as its packing, warehousing, and distribution hub for the North.  This newly built facility owned by Aver property, comprises an eaves height of 15 metres, 21 docking doors and spaces for 39 trailers. It boasts over 224,000 sq. ft. of space, enough to house 35,000 pallets.

This distribution facility sits prominently fronting onto the M1 Motorway and will serve as Gallery’s northern packing, warehousing, and distribution hub, with enough space to accommodate the ongoing expansion of the business. The property is also planned to accommodate a new 30,000 sq. ft. state-of-the-art showroom over three floors.

Established in 1973 as a small family run business, Gallery Direct has grown to become the leading British based designer, manufacturer and worldwide distributor of furniture, home decor and accessories, committed to offering the complete home furnishings solution.

Peter Delaney, managing director at The Gallery Direct Group, commented: “We are absolutely delighted to have secured this prestigious facility in an amazing northern location. The fact is that this new property, combined with our southern warehouse and head office, improves further our distribution and operational capacity. We will be able to serve 96% of our clients’ requirements with one day delivery times, utilising our own home distribution fleet.

“We are excited to be expanding Gallery’s established home interiors categories, including furniture, lighting, wall décor and textiles, as well as the newer developments in outdoor living, home accessories and Christmas. Our strategy to be the leading supplier of the complete home and outdoor solution continues at pace. OrionOne is another significant milestone for our business and we look forward to welcoming clients to our grand opening early in 2022.”

Rob Whatmuff, from Colliers, commented: “We are delighted to have advised Aver Property on this transaction. Agreeing the deal in advance of practical completion is testament to both the quality of the building and the Markham Vale location.”


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Chesterfield’s Custom Solar completes innovative panel installation at the port of Southampton

Chesterfield-based green energy company, Custom Solar is proud to have completed its latest innovative solar project in the Port of Southampton.

The latest development in partnership with Associated British Ports sees the Horizon Cruise Terminal fitted with 2,000 solar modules, providing an 871kWp (Kilowatt Peak) system which will generate 850MWh per year. This ultimately means that on a day-to-day basis the terminal will generate more energy than it uses.

The new Horizon Cruise Terminal is thought to be the greenest in the UK. It is a significant step forward in energy sustainability within the maritime sector, with the ‘plug-in’ Shore Power technology that will allow vessels to connect to the national grid for power, significantly cutting carbon emissions.

The innovatively designed curved rooftop of the Horizon Cruise Terminal provided challenges to the project, with significant obstacles spanning spotlights and shipping infrastructure. As well as this, the installation of the project accounted for snow loading challenges with the architectural design of the rooftop. The Custom Solar design team expertly surpassed these challenges with a bespoke developed design.

ABP’s Sustainable Development Manager, Sue Simmonite, said: “From the outset of the design phase, we have been committed to ensuring our new Horizon Cruise Terminal embraces sustainability principles. Working with Custom Solar we have been able to maximise the amount of solar generation installed on the roof space of the design such that the terminal will be a net generator of renewable energy.”

Custom Solar’s Chief Executive, Gary Sucharewycz, said: “We are proud to have delivered another fantastic project for the Associated British Ports at the Port of Southampton. We have been involved in the project from concept and worked on complex solutions through the architectural design phase.

“This resulted in our team designing a bespoke mounting solution to seamlessly integrate the solar system into the bi-directional curvature of the roof. It’s been a fantastic project to have been involved with and one that our team have enjoyed being part of. The visual impact is impressive but more importantly we have assisted our client in identifying and creating solutions for deploying on site solar in a complex environment which is what we specialise in with our expert team.

“We operate and maintain over 3MW of solar assets at the Port of Southampton that we delivered over the last 3 years with further projects being developed and delivered.

Custom Solar LTD designs, develops, installs, and maintains large scale infrastructure storage and solar systems for clientele including commercial and public sector institutions across the UK.

The firm’s track record of tailoring projects for large-scale commercial clients relies on creativity, expertise in engineering, and an industry-leading attitude to health & safety. The company values the trust placed in it to provide the correct solar solution and investment plan for each unique scenario.

Custom Solar supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 190 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.


New solar installation at Port of Southampton, Image Credit – ABP

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New soft play, entertainment and dessert venue open in Chesterfield

A brand new venue for children is set to open in Chesterfield, which will house family-friendly entertainment, a soft play area and mouth-watering desserts.

Kooca will be open seven days a week, from 10am to 6pm to help provide fun for your little ones, while you, your family and friends tuck into an indulgent treat.

The venue on Beetwell Street will officially open its doors to the public from Saturday, 2nd October, with toy cars and pony cycles also included to enable children to have a fun experience.

Special events such as Halloween and Christmas parties will also be lined up at the new venue, which aims to provide hours of fun for youngsters across North Derbyshire and beyond.

Operations Director Ian Biggin said: “Our intention is simply to be Chesterfield’s Premier Children’s Soft Play, Entertainment, Party and Dessert Venue.

“Kooca features the latest in soft play design, along with a family friendly entertainment venue which will host shows and events throughout the year.

“We can offer bespoke party packages from tailored group experiences including food and drink packages up to exclusive venue hire for your special event.”

Kooca will be offering guests a delicious range of treats for guests, including freshly made waffles topped off with locally-made Frederick’s ice cream, coffees with flavoured shots, milkshakes and much more.

Further plans for the new business include the development of ‘Our Tiny Town’ in which the business’s owners will work with teams from Chesterfield borough council and Chesterfield College to create a miniature replica of Chesterfield within the building.

You can find out more about Kooca, and all the exciting events taking place there over on the venue’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/koocaltd or by calling 01246 604670.

There is so much to do across Chesterfield to keep the whole family entertained. Find out what you could be getting up to in the town on our ‘Places to Visit’ page.

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