About Chesterfield

Support on offer for local jobseekers

Free assistance is now available at Chesterfield Library to aid residents currently seeking employment.

As well as one-to-one computer sessions to help people find jobs and benefits information online, job hunters will also be able to access regular employability sessions each week.

Run by Derbyshire County Council’s Careers Service, the employability sessions will take place between 9.30am and 12.30pm each Friday and will advise anyone who is looking for work or a change in career, those at risk of redundancy, or those who want to create or update a CV.

Deputy Cabinet Member for Health and Communities Councillor Ellie Wilcox said:

“I am delighted to see our libraries providing such a useful scheme in their local communities.

“Our librarians will work with people to give all the help they can and they can then refer them to other organisations for further support if necessary.”

“Those who are job hunting can often be at a disadvantage if they can’t apply online and we want to help with this.

“We also want to help people with money worries to find out information about the benefits and support that they may be eligible for.”

Staff providing the sessions are working with organisations such as the Department for Work and Pensions, Citizens Advice Bureau, Derbyshire Unemployed Workers Centre, Derbyshire Law Centre, the Volunteer Centre and our own Welfare Rights Service.

Participants will be also be able to take away information sheets on a variety of subjects including job searching, volunteering opportunities, money matters, legal information and advice, a beginners guide to the internet, setting up an email account and using Netloan machines in Derbyshire libraries.

Further information about the work and benefits sessions and the employability workshops is available by contacting Derbyshire County Council’s Library Information Service on 01629 533444 or by emailing asklibrary@derbyshire.gov.uk.  To book an employability workshop please call 01629 533400.  Residents can also invited to drop in without reserving a place.

Source:Derbyshire County Council

Posted in About Chesterfield

Chatsworth at forefront of accessible tourism campaign following funding boost

Chatsworth is among eight Peak District and Derbyshire businesses chosen to promote England as a leading destination for accessible tourism – now worth £3 billion to the national economy.

Official tourist board, Visit Peak District & Derbyshire is one of just seven destinations to secure a share in national tourist board, VisitEngland’s ‘Access for All’ project, funded by a 125,000 Euros (almost £98,000) grant from the European Commission.

All the businesses taking part along with Chatsworth – Crich Tramway Village; East Lodge Hotel and Restaurant, Rowsley; Hoe Grange Holidays, Brassington; the Peak District National Park Authority’s Parsley Hay Cycle Centre; Peak Shopping Village, Rowsley and Rivendale Caravan and Leisure Park, near Ashbourne – will have the opportunity to promote and improve their accessibility as part of the project.

Their employees will have access to the very latest training to boost their skills, while an informative guide will showcase the warm welcome and wide variety of experiences all visitors – including those with access needs – can expect in the Peak District and Derbyshire.

VisitEngland will also launch a national marketing campaign in the late summer and early autumn to promote experiences available for visitors with access needs and encourage more people to take a short break in England.

“We’re delighted to have the chance to take part in this VisitEngland initiative, which will put the Peak District and Derbyshire firmly on the map as one of the country’s leading destinations offering accessibility to all,” said Lindsay Rae, Industry Engagement Manager at Visit Peak District & Derbyshire.

“We already work with our Patrons, members and organisations such as Accessible Derbyshire to make people aware that much progress has already been made to improve accessibility to accommodation, attractions and activities in the area.

“‘Access for All’ involves some of the flagship businesses that have already made great strides in catering for this growing market, and will build on what has already been achieved.”

James Berresford, Chief Executive of VisitEngland, added: “We are committed to ensuring England is a destination that offers a warm welcome for all visitors. The Access for All project is a fantastic opportunity to continue to build England’s reputation as a leader in accessible tourism, and help grow this important and valuable market.”

New research by VisitEngland reveals that the overnight accessible tourism market is now worth £3 billion to England’s economy, with day visits boosting the figure to £12.4 billion. Over the past four years, overnight trips by disabled tourists and their companions have increased by 19 per cent, with spending up by 33 per cent.

Source:Visit Peak District & Derbyshire

Posted in About Chesterfield, Visiting

Recognition for Chamber’s efforts to close employability gap

The work East Midlands Chamber does to help create closer links between business and education has been praised by Government.



The Chamber’s Schools Forum, established to promote better engagement between education sector and the private sector, has been highlighted in a report from the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills which looks at the relationship between employers, schools and the National Careers Service (NCS).


The research paper, written by former National Careers Council Chair Dr Deidre Hughes, examines the role of the service in helping employers to work with schools, to the benefit of individuals and businesses.


It holds the Schools Forum up as an example of best practice of schools and businesses working together, stating: “An important element of the forum is to provide information on labour market intelligence relating to area of economic growth and employment opportunities in the region.


“This has been provided by the Local Enterprise Partnership, local authorities, employment and Skills Boards and from research undertaken at local universities.


“The aim of this is to ensure that curriculum development and careers advice is not disjointed and removed from the realities of the needs of local employers.”


East Midlands Chamber, which represents businesses across Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Leicestershire, has worked closely with the Department for Education, Ofsted and the Local Enterprise Partnerships for the three counties on a host of skills-related initiatives over the past two years.


And in its recently launched 2015 election business manifesto, it has called for measures to incorporate employment outcomes in secondary school assessments, ensure work experience is embedded into education, champion vocational options in education and ensure there is a clear link between the curriculum and the demands of the local labour market.


Chris Hobson, the Chamber’s Head of Information and Representation, said: “Members frequently tell us that skills shortages are among the biggest problems they face when it comes to recruitment, which is why the Chamber has been working hard to improve the employability skills of school-leavers and young people.


“The work that has been done is an important part of correcting the skills shortages both in the short and longer term. In the short term, it’s vital the Chamber works with others to ensure people in work and those looking for jobs are equipped with the skills to succeed.



“It is gratifying that the hard work has been recognised but while progress has been made there is still more to do on this agenda to help ensure that all young people have the skills, attributes and attitudes employers demand.”

Source:East Midlands Chamber

Posted in About Chesterfield, Business

Chesterfield Borough Council branding changed for first time in 40 years

New branding is being introduced to help Chesterfield Borough Council improve customer service, generate more income and save on future design costs.

The council’s branding was originally created 40 years ago and so was not designed with modern publishing needs in mind, particularly for websites or social media.

The new visual identity, produced by Chesterfield-based company Crush Design, continues to feature the town’s famous Crooked Spire and is designed to help attract more people to use services that generate income, such as the council’s leisure centres.

To help the council save money in the future templates are also being produced to enable council staff to create posters or leaflets for events they are running without having the cost of designing each one individually.

Implementation of the branding will be phased in so that items are only replaced when they reach the end of their working life to prevent additional costs. Many uses of the branding can be changed without any cost, such as social media or when producing future leaflets or posters.

Councillor John Burrows, leader of Chesterfield Borough Council and Vice Chair of Destination Chesterfield, said: “At the moment we provide around 60 services. Different teams in the council tell the public about them in different ways and using different visual styles.

“So while they might know we are responsible for rubbish collection they might not know we run the Pomegranate Theatre and Winding Wheel or the parks. Instead they often mistakenly think we are responsible for roads, schools or social care when those are services run by Derbyshire County Council.

“By simplifying the messages we give out and presenting them in a more modern and consistent way people will be able to easily identify what services are run by Chesterfield Borough Council and how to contact us about them.”

A separate organisation, Destination Chesterfield, which is a partnership between private businesses and the public sector, is responsible for marketing Chesterfield as a place to invest in and visit.

In recent years Destination Chesterfield has created an identity to promote Chesterfield which has been used at key gateways to the town, on tourism promotional materials and to promote economic development and regeneration projects.

The council branding has not been changed for 40 years and only applies to services provided by Chesterfield Borough Council. The new branding will not replace any of the work done by Destination Chesterfield to promote Chesterfield.

The council has approved the use of the new branding from late January.

Source:Chesterfield Borough Council

Posted in About Chesterfield, Made in Chesterfield

New era beckons for Peak District and Derbyshire Tourism

Tourism in the Peak District and Derbyshire is poised on the brink of a brand new era as the newly-restructured tourist board looks forward to fresh challenges and opportunities in 2015 and beyond.


Changes at the top at Visit Peak District & Derbyshire are designed to take the organisation forward into an even brighter future as a world class tourism destination.

DMO Director Jo Dilley – who has been involved in the strategic development of the tourist board since its inception – is now at the helm of a leaner, reshaped team.

The announcement comes at the end of a review of the tourist board, instigated by its key public funders to assess its performance and achievements since it was set up nine years ago.

The review panel – consisting of representatives from both the public and private sectors – was also charged with recommending ways in which the tourist board’s structure and operations could be modified to ensure its continued success.

A new, revised structure has now been approved by both the review panel and Visit Peak District & Derbyshire’s Board.

“I am delighted to welcome Jo Dilley as DMO Director,” said Paul Roden, Chairman of Visit Peak District & Derbyshire. “After nine years as a pivotal member of the tourist board’s senior management team, she is the ideal choice to steer the organisation through its current period of transition.

“I would like to assure visitors, stakeholders, Patrons and members that they can continue to count on the high standard and wide range of services they have come to expect from the tourist board as we embark on an exciting array of marketing activities in 2015 and beyond.

“Much has already been achieved, and with our revised and responsive new structure, we can look forward to an even more promising future – building on the strong relationships we have forged with all our public and private sector partners.”

David James, former Chief Executive at the tourist board, who will join Bath Tourism Plus as Chief Executive in the New Year, added: “It has been a great honour to lead the team at Visit Peak District & Derbyshire for the past nine years.

“It has been particularly rewarding to see the difference our destination has achieved over that time. Our national Tourist Board, VisitEngland, now recognises it as one of the leading destinations in the country – a massive result achieved by working together with all our public and private sector partners for the greater good.

“I can only wish the team, the stakeholders and the industry the very best of luck for the future. The Peak District and Derbyshire is a magnificent part of the country, and it has been my privilege to serve and represent it in the tourism sector.”

Source:Visit Peak District and Derbyshire

Posted in About Chesterfield, Visiting

Council approves study into new Chesterfield market layout

Plans to improve the layout of the historic Chesterfield Market market are to be drawn up.

Councillors have approved plans for experts to carry out a feasibility study to improve the popular attraction, which is owned and run by Chesterfield Borough Council.

Currently, of 151 stalls in Market Place, only 46 of them face outwards or are at the end of a row.

The study will look into changing the layout of the current market to increase the number of stalls which are in a prominent position looking outwards which can be easily seen by shoppers.

Other issues which will be investigated include:

  • Increasing the power supply to stalls to allow for more refrigerators and tills, allowing modern payment methods to be used
  • Increasing aisle space to make it easier for shoppers with pushchairs and wheelchairs to use the market.

The council has carried out consultation with traders and their views will be taken into account when the report is prepared and considered.

Councillor Amanda Serjeant, Chesterfield Borough Council’s executive member for leisure, culture and tourism, said: “Although our traditional open-air market continues to be popular with residents and visitors alike, we currently have a problem for traders where the majority of traders do not have a prominent position facing outwards or at the end of a row, meaning they cannot be seen easily by shoppers and attract less trade.

“We have listened to concerns raised by traders and we will be inviting experts to come and look at a new layout for the market which will increase the footfall to the area.”

Source:Chesterfield Borough Council

Posted in About Chesterfield, Visiting

More Good News on Jobs

The number of people claiming unemployment benefit across the region has fallen once again.

Figures released this morning show a reduction in Jobseekers Allowance claimants of 2,533 across Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Leicestershire from 42,223 in October to 38,690 in November – a fall of 17,475 compared with November 2013.

The countywide figure for Derbyshire showed a drop of 434 from 7,570 to 7,136 for the month, a reduction of 3,299 for the year.

In Chesterfield the number of people claiming out of work benefit stood at 1446 in November, which has dropped by 503 from 1949 since the same month in 2013 and the figure is now at its lowest since June 2008 which stood at 1449.  It is the lowest figure recorded in the town on the records which go back to 1992.

George Cowcher, Chief Executive of East Midlands Chamber – the Chamber of Commerce for Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Leicestershire – said: “The continuing fall in the number of Jobseekers Allowance claimants is welcome and is indicative of the strength of the local economy.

“The East Midlands region has been one of the main drivers of the economic recovery and the provisional results of the latest Quarterly Economic Survey carried out by the Chamber suggest that firms are continuing to recruit and will do well into 2015.

“What is important now is for the gap between the skills of school leavers and the needs of employers to be closed so that more young people are properly prepared for work and for Government to make sure business has easy access to the finance it needs to invest for the future to create even more jobs.

“There is little doubt now that interest rates will rise next year. It is vital for business that the increase is controlled so that it doesn’t punish firms which have already invested and cause them to review recruitment plans or even reduce staff levels to offset any increase in the cost of borrowing.”

Source:East Midlands Chamber

Posted in About Chesterfield

New facilities in Chesterfield for Derbyshire athletes

A new satellite hub designed to help athletes from the Chesterfield area reach the top of their chosen sports has been unveiled.

The Derbyshire Institute of Sport (DIS) programme is for elite performers and has been established as a legacy of the London 2012 Olympic Games, with the aim of giving stars of the future the chance to push their sporting careers to the next level.

Support comes in the shape of strength and conditioning coaching, access to physiotherapists, nutritional advice and the provision of training facilities.

The main DIS hub is at the University of Derby, who, along with Derby City Council and Derbyshire County Council, provide funding to back around 50 athletes.

But two additional sites in Chesterfield – at Chesterfield Borough Council’s Queen’s Park Sports Centre and Staveley Healthy Living Centre – will ensure that those on the DIS programme based further north in the county will enjoy easier access to facilities.

Colin Deaton Table Tennis Academy player Isobel Ashley, 18, from Barrow Hill, is delighted she will now be able to spend more time training.

“The Staveley site is just five minutes from my school where I am studying for my A levels and means I can go straight to the gym there after,” she said.

“I can also use the sports hall to practise at Queen’s Park, as well as the swimming facilities, and it cuts down on the travel to Derby, which can take an hour or more at busy times.”

Golfer George Woolgar, 29, from Tapton, and a member at Chesterfield Golf Club, is aiming to win a place on the European Tour next year.

He said: “I’ve already trained at Staveley and it’s a great facility. It’s a massive help knowing that these places are on my doorstep.”

Another golfer on the DIS programme is 22-year-old Jamie Boler, from Chesterfield. “We can, and will, still travel to Derby some of the time, but training in the town over the winter is going to be a great help,” he said.

The deal between DIS and Chesterfield Borough Council was officially signed on Wednesday morning (December 16) at the Market Hall, Chesterfield.

“It’s a significant development and an opportunity to build on the already great things that Chesterfield people are achieving in sport,” said Mick Blythe, Vice-Chair of Active Chesterfield.

“It gives the community confidence that the right things are in place to give people that final extra value that’s needed to sustain a high performance level.”

Cllr Amanda Sarjeant, Executive Member for Leisure, Culture and Tourism, at Chesterfield Borough Council added: “The link ties in well with the other work we are doing to support promising young athletes, such as the ICON bursary programme and the Chesterfield School Sports Partnership.”

Although still relatively new, the DIS programme is already beginning to bear fruit, with Tansley shooter Caroline Povey having used her backing to help secure a Commonwealth Games bronze medal in Glasgow this summer.

Ilana Freestone, Director at Derbyshire Sport, which manages the DIS programme, said: “We are trying to give athletes from across Derbyshire the best possible chance to succeed. It’s important to provide local facilities for local athletes.”

Caption: From left to right, Ilana Freestone (Director at Derbyshire Sport), George Woolgar (DIS golfer), Jamie Boler (DIS golfer), Isobel Ashley (DIS table tennis player), Councillor Amanda Serjeant (Executive Member for Leisure, Culture and Tourism at Chesterfield Borough Council).

Source:Derbyshire Sport

Posted in About Chesterfield, Development

Mayor opens new home for three of Chesterfield’s small businesses

The Mayor of Chesterfield, Councillor Alexis Diouf, took time out of his busy schedule on Small Business Saturday (6 December) to officially open the new home of three small businesses – StraightCurves, In the Works PR and eBusiness Works – who have all relocated to 104 Saltergate.

The four storey building, situated opposite the former home of Chesterfield Football Club, was purchased by StraightCurves earlier this year after the business outgrew its previous home in the Market Hall.

Following a Global Derbyshire Grant, the building was completely refurbished to be fully accessible and to create office space for two other small businesses – In the Works PR and eBusiness Works – who have moved into the top floor of the building.

The move into larger premises has also enabled StraightCurves, a small business delivering art and craft courses and workshops to both children and adults, to create a new full-time job.

During the opening the Mayor and Mayoress were given a tour of the building which includes three large studios dedicated to crafts, including a special space for children’s parties, kids crafting workshops and after school clubs, a brand new kitchen and disabled toilet facilities across two floors. They also met with a number of local artists, designers and craftspeople who use the space at StraightCurves to deliver craft workshops to the public.

Mayor of Chesterfield, Councillor Alexis Diouf said: “It has been great to visit on the opening day. We wish you all success, and hope to visit again soon.”

Karen Rogers, owner of StraightCurves said: “We were thrilled that the Mayor was able to officially open our new home on Saltergate. It was so fitting that our official opening was on Small Business Saturday, which is all about supporting, inspiring and promoting small businesses, as it just embodies the spirit of the companies based in our new home.  We’re all thrilled with the new premises and excited about the opportunities that it offers.”

Anna Melton, Director of In the Works PR said: “We’re delighted with our new home, the building’s lovely to work in and a great place to welcome clients too. Having just won Business Idea of the Year for eBusiness Works at the Derbyshire Times Business Awards, our plans for expansion are moving forward quickly and our new office space allows us to do that.”

Following the official opening by the Mayor, StraightCurves continued their celebration of Small Business Saturday by hosting an Open Day which featured a craft fair with stalls from lots of small crafty Chesterfield-based businesses selling everything from cards, to original artworks, jewellery and ceramics.


Posted in About Chesterfield, Business

Building foundations for new Chesterfield Sports Centre

Work has begun on building foundations for new Chesterfield Sports Centre on behalf of Chesterfield Borough Council.

Work is currently being carried out by construction and infrastructure company Morgan Sindall on erecting the steel structure of the new centre on the site of Queen’s Park Annexe. A clause in the contract specifies they should use local labour and materials where possible.

The new centre is funded by £6.725 million from Chesterfield Borough Council, £2.5 million from Chesterfield College, as part of a dual use agreement, £2 million from Sport England’s Strategic Facilities Fund and £25,000 from Squash England.

The current Queens Park Sports Centre will remain open until the new centre opens in early 2016.

Posted in About Chesterfield, Development

Young People Hail Inaugural Made in Chesterfield Week a Success

More than 400 students from North East Derbyshire’s schools have hailed Chesterfield’s very first manufacturing festival, Made in Chesterfield, a success.

The week (10 – 14 November), which was coordinated by Destination Chesterfield, featured a programme of manufacturing dedicated events.

The Mayor and Mayoress of Chesterfield kicked off the festival by unveiling a new sculpture outside Chesterfield Coach Station, which was a collaboration between, Franke Sissons Ltd’s apprentices and students from Parkside School.

Year 10 Parkside School student Bayley Siddall, who worked on the sculpture’s design said, “It’s given me a real insight into what I would like to do in the future.”

The week-long festival was designed to showcase the town’s successful manufacturing and engineering sector and ignite career interest in the sector from young people as well as bring together the business community.

School events included tours of United Cast Bar Ltd, Franke Sissons Ltd, MSE Hiller, Penny Hydraulics, Corregated Case Company and Kingfield Electronics, as well as making a stainless steel die at NLT, and an open evening at Chesterfield College.

There was also a number of competitions held throughout the week including design a tent with FieldCandy and Crush Design, and a Twitter vs Drone competition hosted by Magnifica Technologies Ltd and Kingfield Electronics, which was won by Brookfield School.

Commenting at a business round table event during Made in Chesterfield Week, Andy Dukelow, Managing Director of Franke Sissons said: “You have to overcome a generation that thinks manufacturing is noisy and dirty.  There are young people leaving school now that haven’t had family members working in industry and view manufacturing as the past. This isn’t the case. Chesterfield has a thriving manufacturing and engineering sector and many companies within it are working throughout the world.”

He added: As a former apprentice myself, I am very passionate about working closely with local schools. Working with students at Parkside School gave us the opportunity to give 10 young people and insight into the manufacturing industry, and show them the different careers and routes they could pursue. Many children think that manufacturing is just solely about working in a factory, but there’s so much more to it and that’s what Made in Chesterfield was designed to show them.”

A highlight of the week included the arrival of the travelling engineering showcase, MANTRA, (Manufacturing Transporter), sponsored by commercial insurance broker Arthur J. Gallagher, on Thursday 14 November at the Proact Stadium. The 14m HGV trailer, packed with state of the art engineering technology has been developed by The University of Sheffield Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) with Boeing, a world-class centre for advanced machining and materials research for aerospace and other high-value manufacturing sectors.

Toby Perkins MP for Chesterfield, joined students from Tupton Primary School on Mantra. He said: “Manufacturing is vitally important for Britain’s future and motivating the next generation of Engineers to see the potential opportunities is a great idea.  I hope that some of the children I met here today will be the Engineers of the future.”

A number of sixth form students were also invited to take part in the annual manufacturing breakfast seminar held at The Proact Stadium during the Week. Hosted by Shorts Chartered Accountants, NatWest and Banner Jones Solicitors, the event brought together key speakers from the heart of local business, putting emphasis on the future of manufacturing within the region.

Made in Chesterfield Week also coincided with UK Trade & Investment’s (UKTI) sixth Export Week. It emerged during the festival that many of the town’s companies are supplying their products globally and also contributing to Chesterfield reputation for manufacturing and engineering specialisms.

11% of the country’s gross comes from manufacturing which contributes £6.7 trillion to the global economy and locally this represents around 20% for Sheffield City Region.

Simon Grandidge, International Marketing Manager for UK Trade & Investment East Midlands said: “The week long Made in Chesterfield festival provided a fantastic opportunity to celebrate the products and services that come from the area and we were delighted to support Destination Chesterfield with our own export themed event, offering advice to local businesses on how to boost their profits by winning business overseas.

“The event formed part of the biggest Export Week we have held in the region yet, with over 400 companies attending across the week, but we still think that more firms should be taking advantage of the support that is available to them through UKTI and other business support organisations.

“Our research tells us that only 14%, some 8,000, of East Midlands companies export – so there is a lot more we could achieve by boosting this figure by just a few percent.

“We will continue to work with our regional partners, including Destination Chesterfield, to encourage businesses to look at overseas markets and to help drive the economy forwards.”

Although the coal mining industry in north east Derbyshire has ended, Chesterfield’s reputation as the centre of centrifuging in the UK continues with MSE Hiller, based at Markham Vale. The company supplies and rents centrifuges and environmental engineering products to the water, food and other industries throughout the UK. Ivan Fomin, Managing Director of MSE Hiller said: “No one in Britain is doing what we are doing. Our products and services are very much in demand.”

Earlier this year United Cast Bar (UK) brought Chesterfield to the attention of the global iron industry after it successfully produced a record-breaking 665mm diameter bar of iron, casting 220 tonnes of material using the continuous casting method.

James Brand Managing director of United Cast Bar said: “While there are fewer jobs in the sector today, he believes there is a wealth of undiscovered opportunities for young people and I urge schools to encourage young people to consider a career within it.

“If we are to develop our young people and retain their talent in the UK, schools must start bringing the manufacturing and engineering sector to their attention. Made in Chesterfield has made a fantastic start in doing this and I very much hope it continues.”

Dominic Stevens, Destination Chesterfield Manager added: “Chesterfield has a rich heritage in the manufacturing and engineering sector and it’s important to celebrate that. We’re really passionate about inspiring young people to pursue a career in manufacturing or engineering but to be able to do that it’s vital to show them that there are hundreds of careers paths they could pursue in the sector.

“We’re thrilled that the first Made in Chesterfield festival went down a storm. Thank you to all of the local businesses that got behind the week by hosting their own events and attending others. We can’t wait to bring it back again next year to more young people.”


If you’re interested in getting involved in next year’s Made in Chesterfield Week, please contact dom.stevens@chesterfield.co.uk

Source:Destination Chesterfield

Posted in About Chesterfield, Business, Celebrate Chesterfield, Destination Chesterfield, Made in Chesterfield

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