Celebrate Chesterfield

Chesterfield’s Bridge Help goes carbon neutral

Chesterfield-based Bridge Help has started 2022 as a carbon neutral organisation, offsetting the entire carbon footprint of its workforce – from their flights and car journeys to lunches and energy usage both at work and home.

In just two months the commercial bridging finance company has directly funded the planting of 508 trees across Madagascar, Kenya, Uganda and Mozambique as well as achieving a reduction in 34.44 tonnes of CO2.

Becoming carbon neutral has been made possible by Ecologi – an organisation which helps companies and individuals fund impactful climate solutions, plant trees, analyse carbon footprint, become climate positive, achieve carbon neutrality and much more.

Every member of the Bridge Help team has been registered with Ecologi and carbon credits aligned according to their lifestyle.

By signing up to Ecologi, the Bridge Help team is directly funding high-impact climate solutions and supporting the town’s ambition to become a carbon neutral borough by 2050.

Companies and organisations that have signed up to Ecologi to date have, together, funded the planting of an amazing 31,450,527 trees reducing 1,239,380 tonnes of CO2 to date in a drive to bring greenhouse gas emissions in the UK to net zero by 2050.

With its team members, brokers and borrowers based throughout England and Wales, the company was an early adopter of Zoom video conferencing technology in order to minimising travel. A number of staff members also drive electric cars.

Chris Sellars, Chief Executive of Bridge Help commented: “Prior to signing up to Ecologi, we made small steps in becoming a carbon neutral business however this has now been accelerated. What myself and the team particularly like about Ecologi, is that we are all offsetting our personal carbon output 24/7 whether we are working or not. It is something the whole team is passionate about and we’ll be taking further steps throughout 2022 and beyond to reduce our impact on the environment.

He added: “We’re a growing business and it’s important to us all that our impact on the environment does not also increase. As we welcome new members to the team, they’ll also be automatically be signed up to Ecologi.”

Despite the economic slowdown due to the pandemic, the highest ever atmospheric CO2 concentration (419 parts per million) was recorded in June 2021. With seven of the warmest years on record all occurring since 2014, the issue of climate change is increasingly pressing.

To find out more about Ecologi and how you can get involved, visit ecologi.com.

Bridge Help supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 200 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

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“We all have a role to play in ensuring that Chesterfield is future-proofed”

Destination Chesterfield Chair, Peter Swallow has published his latest blog focusing on the importance of skills and job creation in the town.


2022 certainly kicked off in style (pun intended) with a trip to Chelsea for Chesterfield FC in the FA Cup.

In what was the ultimate David and Goliath match, Chesterfield FC’s players battled bravely to the end and did themselves proud. However, we must not overlook the fans- Thousands of Spireites travelled to Stamford Bridge and their conduct, friendliness, and optimism made them the ultimate ambassadors for the town. I could not have been more proud of Chesterfield on this historic day.

The conduct of players and fans helped raised the profile of our town in a very positive way, not just nationally but internationally with goodwill messages being received from as far afield as Africa and Russia.

At the 80th minute it would have been easier for the players to sit back and prevent more goals. Not our players, they battled on to score a precious goal against the reigning European champions, sending the fans back home with a smile on their face.

Doesn’t this mirror Chesterfield’s response to the pandemic?

Two years, the town could have bunkered down and ridden out the pandemic. Instead, we chose to forge ahead with existing plans and came up with innovative solutions to ensure Chesterfield continued to grow and develop in the face of adversity.

During the pandemic, Chesterfield has attracted more than £30million in government funding to help revitalise the town centre and regenerate Staveley. Most importantly jobs and opportunities will be created for thousands of young people in the borough.

The last two years have been extremely challenging for students and employers, and it has never been more important to work together to ensure Chesterfield has the skills to grow and recover from those challenges.

We’re committed to creating jobs for local people, which is why, with more than 16,000 students in North Derbyshire set to gain their GCSE and A level qualifications in the next five years, it’s important that they are work ready and know about the opportunities – like apprenticeships – available to them when they leave education.

The annual Chesterfield & North Derbyshire Employability & Skills Conference, which this year fell during National Apprenticeship Week – plays a big role in this.

Organised by Chesterfield Borough Council and Destination Chesterfield with support from Derbyshire North Careers Hub, it continues to strengthen links between education providers and local businesses. Apprenticeships, alongside university and college all take equal billing at the conference, recognising the importance each of them plays in ensuring the town has a skilled workforce.

However, let’s not wait for a conference and awareness week to highlight the importance and value of apprenticeships. Make sure young people around you are aware of apprenticeships and the value they bring to their personal and professional development and the town’s prosperity.

We all have a role to play in ensuring that Chesterfield is future-proofed. Having a skilled workforce is key to ensure our town continues to thrive for generations to come.

Posted in Apprentice Town, Blog, Business, Celebrate Chesterfield, Destination Chesterfield, Development, Love Chesterfield, UncategorisedTagged in , , , , , ,

Vicar Lane set for boost as popular pizza maker moves into new store

Chesterfield Town Centre is set to welcome a new business, with popular food outlet Pizza Pi moving into a unit at Vicar Lane.

The new restaurant will be located on St James Square (underneath the centre’s outdoor screen), and will offer its customers ‘’honest, simple and good food’’.

The menu consists of wood-fired pizzas, garlic bread, fries and sides, with the dough and sauce made fresh every day. The shop is preparing to open just in time for Chesterfield residents to get their orders placed for Valentine’s Day.

Founded in 2017, originally as a mobile business, Pizza Pi has gone from strength to strength, and their new restaurant at Vicar Lane will cater for twice as many customers as their old premises on Beetwell Street.

While they are working around the clock to get the new restaurant ready in time for the opening, the Pizza Pi team are serving takeaway pizzas from a trailer out the front. Visit pizzapiuk.com to find out more.

Shaun Brown, Operations Manager, Vicar Lane said “We’re really excited to welcome Pizza Pi to our line-up. The restaurant is looking great and we can’t wait for them to open their doors next month!”

Pizza Pi joins Chesterfield’s plethora of food outlets, providing great dining options across the town. Find out more about what’s on offer at: https://www.chesterfield.co.uk/visiting/eating-out/

Based in the heart of Chesterfield, Vicar Lane Shopping Centre is  home to a range of popular high-street retailers and a mix of unique independent stores.

The centre features high street brands such as Waterstones, F.Hinds, Superdrug, Holland and Barrett, Clintons and New Look. It offers a great shopping experience in a clean, safe and easily accessible area of the town centre with its own multi-storey car park.

Vicar Lane Shopping Centre supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 200 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

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Businesses set to move into Chesterfield’s new Glassyard development

One of Chesterfield’s exciting new developments, The Glassyard is beginning to welcome businesses on-site with a local hairdresser confirmed as one of the companies set to move into a retail unit there.

A move to The Glassyard has enabled MD Hair to take the business to the next level after operating as a sole trader for five years.

The Glass Yard is a 50,000sq ft development comprising a mix of office and retail space as well as an artisan food and drink hall, known as the Batch House – set to open in February.

The move to The Glass Yard on Sheffield Road, has seen MD Hair grow from sole trader status to a team of three.

Michelle Dalman, Director of MD Hair commented: “I’m really excited to see more businesses moving into The Glass Yard. I am already delighted with the number of new clients we’ve had through the door. Now, it’s all about building the brand and moving forward from there.”

Despite having grown from a sole trader working in premises on Mansfield Road, to a salon with eight chairs, Michelle already has further plans for future growth. She explained: “We’re already thinking about how we can grow. We’ve got room here and I would like to add another salon in the near future.

“We’d also love to open a training academy and be able to offer in house apprenticeships. All our staff have got higher training and that’s important to us. We’re offering a luxury, premium service here and want customers to have more than just a haircut – it’s an experience.”

Sheffield-based property law specialist Mason Thomas Law assisted in her move to the brand new, bespoke premises at The Glass Yard. Mason Thomas Law worked closely with Blue Deer Ltd, to secure the lease deal on behalf of MD Hair.

Michelle explained: “The team at Mason Thomas Law has been amazing. Not knowing anything about the legal side of things, they have really helped me understand everything by breaking everything down into Layman’s terms. Jumping from being a sole trader to this is quite a big leap, so it’s good to have their support.”

Cathy Thomas, Director and Solicitor at Mason Thomas Law said: “It’s been great to see the growth of MD Hair and we’re thrilled to help the business move into its new premises. As well as acquiring new premises, Michelle was upscaling the business at the same time, so it was important to us that we made the lease negotiations at The Glass Yard as straightforward as possible for her. It’s an exciting time for Michelle and her team and we all wish he well and look forward to seeing the business thrive.”

To learn more about how Mason Thomas Law can help you, get in touch with the team today on 0114 2945 360.

 

Posted in About Chesterfield, Business, Celebrate Chesterfield, Destination Chesterfield, Development, Featured, Home, Leisure, Love Chesterfield, Property and Construction, Uncategorised, VisitingTagged in , , , , , ,

Innovative swimming programme picks up national award

An innovative swimming programme which supports local people who have had cancer has been recognised with a national award.

Chesterfield Borough Council was announced as the winner of the Swim England Health Impact Award at the Teaching and Education Awards 2021 for its delivery of ‘OutSwimming Cancer’ sessions at its leisure centre.

Since early 2020, residents in Chesterfield who have had cancer have been invited to take part in free, relaxed swimming session at Queen’s Park Sports Centre thanks to funding from Weston Park Cancer Charity.

The council was first approached about the session by one of its swimming instructors, Lesley Rechert, who realised the benefits that swimming could bring to people after their cancer treatment. Working with Lesley, the council was able to create a programme that provided swimming sessions for adults that would assist with their long term recovery.

Councillor Jill Mannion-Brunt, Chesterfield Borough Council’s cabinet member for health and wellbeing, said: “We are very proud of the team at Queen’s Park Sports Centre for achieving this award as they have put a huge amount of effort in to making the session a success.

“It’s important that everyone feels like they can pursue a healthy lifestyle and use our facilities to achieve this. Our staff at the centre are really supportive and it’s brilliant that we can offer this provision to people who are going through such a difficult time in their lives.

“Recovery from cancer can take a long time but swimming is really beneficial for the journey back to better health – it’s a great way for rebuilding your strength and confidence. Quiet sessions like OutSwimming Cancer aim to create an inclusive environment that is supportive as well as enjoyable.”

Swimming instructor, Lesley, added: “It is wonderful to see people enjoying the water again, increasing their swimming skills and regaining fitness and confidence.  Our participants are very supportive to each other and you will be made to feel welcome whatever your level of swimming.  We are very grateful for the support of Weston Park Cancer Charity.”

OutSwimming Cancer sessions continue to take place every Monday. Further information, including details on how to book a place can be found at www.chesterfield.gov.uk/sport-and-leisure/queens-park-sports-centre/out-swimming-cancer

Funding for the OutSwimming Cancer sessions is provided by Weston Park Cancer Charity with support from Chesterfield Borough Council. Swimmers must be fit and healthy enough to be in the swimming pool and are encouraged to speak to the GP before attending a session if they are unsure.

Ruby Osborn, Grants Manager at Weston Park Cancer Charity, said: “We’re thrilled that OutSwimming Cancer has been recognised by Swim England.

“Lesley and the team have created a wonderfully supportive environment to encourage people living with and beyond cancer to get into the pool and enjoy the benefits of swimming.

“The feedback we’ve had from participants shows how much of difference this programme is making and we look forward to the partnership continuing.”

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SDE Electrical & CCG join forces to offer a one stop shop for all EV requirements

Chesterfield-based SDE Electrical has agreed a nationwide partnership with Car Charge Go to support domestic and commercial customers converting to electric vehicles.

The number of EV vehicles in the last 12 months has increased by 67%, whereas sales in petrol and diesel vehicles have fallen significantly. Battery EV uptake has doubled, but the new car market remains well adrift of pre-pandemic levels.

SDE Group says that while the demand for Electric Vehicles is at an all time high, the EV charging and infrastructure network does not currently support the uptake. The announcement of this strategic partnership will help support the gap by offering customers a complete end-to-end solution for all EV needs.

Both SDE & CCG have both secured nationwide contracts in their own fields with global companies, with SDE being a commercial EV specialist and CCG specialising in the domestic market.

Furthermore, SDE has successfully secured a contract with Gridserve for the rollout of new rapid chargers. The contract is for both installation and maintenance across the electrical highway (motor services, Ikea stores etc.) from Lands End to John o’ Groats.

This contract is set to help increase the EV infrastructure across the UK. Car Charge Go will support SDE by providing administration & technical support.

Jonathan Bennett, Managing Director of SDE Group commented: “The change in behaviors in consumers and businesses looking to convert to electric is phenomenal when you look at the numbers.

“Along with the environmental benefits and financial savings attached, key policy changes set by government and events such as COP 26 have helped create this uptake, therefore this partnership is critical to support all our customers and aid the transformation for consumer and businesses. We are looking forward to working with Kate and the team at CCG.”

SDE Group supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 200 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

 

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Local charity receives national recognition from the BBC’s The One Show

North East Derbyshire based local charity – crafting2gether which has supported over 1000 businesses during the pandemic, has received a surprise visit from the BBC’s The One Show to thank their founder, Shelagh Cheetham.

The charity, formerly Shelagh’s Sewing Circle, has supplied over 77,000 face masks to frontline workers and businesses and has now received recognition for their dedication to helping those in need.

The charity has expanded and is not just about crafting, people are welcome to join the group for a cup of tea and a chat, helping people to combat loneliness and isolation as well as developing a new skill if they wish.

BBC’s The One Show surprised founder Shelagh at Dronfield Sports Centre and was broadcast to millions of viewers on national TV where she was thanked for her incredible efforts to help key workers, businesses and local communities.

TV star and fashion business owner Patrick Grant was in attendance to surprise Shelagh and thank her.

North East Derbyshire District Council Cabinet Member for Communities, Cllr Alan Powell said, “I am delighted Shelagh has received the recognition she and the other volunteers deserve. I cannot express enough how grateful we all are to have such inspirational members of our community helping others selflessly through the pandemic and beyond.

“I am proud to say we stepped when it was needed most to offer space in our leisure centre at Dronfield so the BBC could attend and put crafting2gether on the National stage.

“Our authority is here to support our local community groups – like crafting 2gether and it’s a great privilege to support the work they do which has helped thousands of key workers and charities worldwide. Thank you.”

Pauline Memmott, a volunteer with crafting2gether, said “We are very grateful to Dronfield Sports Centre for letting us use their venue for the BBC’s One Big Thank You surprise for our founder, Shelagh Cheetham.

“The success and growth of the Charity is all down to Shelagh, although she would say it’s the volunteers!

“With Shelagh’s commitment, we’ve provided thousands of masks to key workers, helped a charity in Armenia by knitting scarves and at a local level, we help combat isolation by providing social contact for members of our community.

“Everyone is welcome to join us to create or just have a cuppa and a chat.”

Posted in About Chesterfield, Celebrate Chesterfield, Development, Home, Leisure, Love Chesterfield, Uncategorised, VisitingTagged in , , , , , ,

Thinking of launching a new business in 2022? Here’s why Chesterfield is the perfect place to start

Have you been thinking about a career change lately? Maybe you’ve always dreamed of starting your own business and following your passion.

Well there’s no better time than now to make those dreams a reality, and here in Chesterfield there’s a wide array of support available to kickstart your new business.

Find out below about what’s on offer to help you start the ball rolling, and why 2022 could be the year you become your own boss!


Vision Derbyshire business start-up support scheme

driving business success

In light of the difficulties faced by businesses during the Covid-19 pandemic, the Vision Derbyshire initiative was set up to help would-be entrepreneurs based in Derbyshire get their businesses up and running, to help create jobs and keep the local economy thriving.

A team of local expert business advisors are in place to offer free advice and support and funding of up to £10,000 per applicant is also available as part of the scheme.

More Information


D2N2 Business Starter Programme

If you’re looking for somewhere to start, but aren’t quite sure how to get a new business set up, D2N2’s Business Starter Programme is a great place to begin.

It’s a dynamic project helping people in communities throughout Derbyshire to start their own business through a programme of themed workshops and one-to-one support.

The scheme has successfully supported over 190 businesses to start and thrive in Derbyshire, and your’s could be next!

More Information


D2N2 Growth Hub

The good news is that the support on offer doesn’t just help you with getting started, there are a number of schemes in place to help you along your business journey as you continue to grow.

The D2N2 Growth Hub provides businesses in our region with a single point of access to business support.

The team of Growth Hub Business Advisers and a dedicated telephone enquiry service have the knowledge, skills and expertise to signpost you to the right initiatives and resources to support your business growth.

More Information


Chesterfield Digital High Street

If you’re setting up a new company in the modern age, it will be important to ensure your business is as visible and resilient as possible.

That’s where the Chesterfield Digital High Street scheme comes in. Support and funding is available to help you set up a fully search engine optimised e-commerce website.

Alongside this, a team of expert advisors will be able to signpost you to a number of great new ways to attract customers and sell goods, both in-person and online!

More Information


Chesterfield Innovation Support Programme

Chesterfield’s Innovation Support Programme (Chesterfield Borough Council) is a project which aims to increase the level of support available to businesses in the Chesterfield area.

The project has been set up to offer a variety of funded support which includes:

  • one-to-one business reviews
  • workshops, seminars and networking events
  • access to specialist innovation advisers
  • support to identify potential funding choices

For further information on the Innovation Support Programme, contact Adrian Williamson, Innovation Support Project Manager at: adrian.williamson@chesterfield.gov.uk


Great workspaces available to suit your every need

Dunston Innovation Centre - Business Chesterfield

Another benefit of setting up your business here in Chesterfield is the ability to get your hands on quality, affordable office space to suit all budgets and requirements.

Here’s a list of some of the places you may want to look into:

  • Dunston and Tapton Innovation Centres – Chesterfield Innovation Centres are designed to assist small to medium sized businesses to successfully innovate and grow. They can offer you professional help in a friendly atmosphere.
  • Northern Gateway Enterprise Centre – This brand-new development is due for completion in early 2022 and will provide modern office space for start-up and medium sized businesses on the site of Holywell Cross (Donut) car park, right in the middle of town.
  • West Studios – West Studios’ main aim has always been supporting SME growth within the creative sector and within Chesterfield. Situated on the Chesterfield College campus, the building has a range of shared studio spaces and offers a virtual office service too.
  • Great 2 – Great2 supports local entrepreneurs and growing small businesses across Derbyshire. The company also offers business operations and marketing support services to help owners scale up.
  • Monkey Park- This community organisation thinks about workspaces differently, and provides a great place to work with none of the strings like leases attached.
  • Loundsley Green– Alongside providing affordable office space, the Loundsley Green Enterprise Centre is able to provide 1-to-1 enterprise coaching to people considering starting their own business and working for themselves.

If there’s nothing on the above list that suits your needs, there’s no need to worry! Chesterfield Borough Council’s expert economic development team can run a property search and help you find the perfect location.

Contact the team on 01246 345255 or email: economic.development@chesterfield.gov.uk Or find out more about commercial property in Chesterfield here.


Join Chesterfield Champions and become a part of the local business community

Champions breakfast Ringwood Hall

If you are growing your organisation in Chesterfield or North Derbyshire and are looking for marketing and business support, Chesterfield Champions is a great way to get your name out there locally.

For a small annual contribution towards the wider marketing of the town, the initiative can help you build relationships with likeminded organisations and keep up to date with local news and developments.

There are a range of opportunities for Chesterfield Champions from senior networking events and priority invitations including consultation events to media opportunities and a profile on the Chesterfield business directory.

More Information

Posted in About Chesterfield, Blog, Business, Celebrate Chesterfield, Destination Chesterfield, Development, Featured, UncategorisedTagged in , , , , , ,

Chesterfield Escape Rooms among the best in the UK according to Tripadvisor

Chesterfield Escape Rooms is celebrating success as the attraction has been listed among the top 10 best escape room attractions in the UK, according to reviews website TripAdvisor.

The business has shot up the rankings since its opening in Summer 2021, following hundreds of positive reviews on the site. At the time of writing, the escape room sits at number 5 in the UK rankings. You can see the list here.

Expressing his delight at the news, owner Nick Hogan said: “Living and working in a small town that encourages visitors, customer’s feedback and word of mouth referrals are so important. Trip advisor is also a huge area of interest for visitors to assess what to do when visiting the area so this was a key focus from Day 1.

“The team have been brilliant in ensuring that customers are made aware of our objective to be a top ranked Escape Room and its only with their help and support in providing on line feedback we have managed to achieve our goal. The team have to ensure they deliver a quality product every time and they have achieved that!

Nick also added that the ranking on TripAdvisor is positive news for the town as a whole, adding to Chesterfield’s visitor economy offer: “We can tell from our booking system that approximately 35-40% of our players are from outside of Chesterfield, with a growing number travelling in from Nottingham, Sheffield, Derby and even further afield! These players are using the Escape Rooms as one of the things to do in Chesterfield but then go onto to increase spend elsewhere in the local vicinity.

“There are 790 different locations offering over 2500 Escape Rooms in the UK so we are overwhelmed with the success to date. It was a real pinch yourself moment when we got into the top 5 as our target was to be a top 50 venue.

“Our next target is to consolidate our top 5 position and then try and build on it. We have a new game going into construction in February / March ready for Easter so with further support from our customers, we maybe be able to go a little higher. The visitor economy is so important to the town so the more attractions we get the better and we are delighted to be able to help out.”

Two other business have also opened in and around the Escape Rooms. Chesterfield Virtual Reality offers an arcade approach to Virtual Reality (for up to 4 players) and also offers VR Escape Rooms. Game Zone has also opened on the town, providing a mix of retro and modern day gaming in a social environment.

Those businesses, combined with the existing Geeks Headquarters on Soresby Street are coming together to offer varying solutions to the entertainment portfolio of the town in one place, all under the banner of Chesterfield Games quarter.

To find out more about the range of attractions in the Chesterfield Games Quarter, visit: www.chesterfieldgamesquarter.co.uk

Chesterfield Escape Rooms supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 200 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

Posted in About Chesterfield, Business, Celebrate Chesterfield, Destination Chesterfield, Development, Featured, Home, Leisure, Love Chesterfield, Uncategorised, VisitingTagged in , , , , , , , ,

New financial facility confirmed for Custom Solar

Custom Solar has announced that the company has secured £4.8m in new lending from Virgin Money to accelerate its growth ambitions.

Based in Chesterfield, the business is behind the largest rooftop commercial installation in the country, fitting 21,000 solar panels at the Port of Hull, which will reduce carbon emissions by approximately 1,400 tonnes every year.

The company has grown a pipeline of future projects and as such has looked towards further growth opportunities and with financial support from Virgin Money, it has given the business flexibility to target bigger designs and installations across its corporate and public sector customers.

Custom Solar was founded in 2011 and over the last 10 years the team has grown to 30 people, who travel to customers all over the UK. With the relaxation of Covid-19 restrictions, it’s seeing an increase in customers moving towards sustainable business improvements and taking advantage of the incentives available when investing in renewable energy.

Gary Sucharewycz, Chief Executive Officer, Custom Solar, said “We are extremely pleased with the facility that will now be in place with Virgin Money. This will support and accelerate our ever-growing 200MW pipeline of solar projects that the company is securing. We wanted to match our growth and ambition for the future with a tangible financial facility that will accelerate our ability to complete projects at an expedient rate. This will not only be a benefit to our clientele but to our planet.”

Custom Solar scored highly on Virgin Money’s Sustainable Business Coach, a recently launched free app designed to help businesses be more sustainable by measuring, tracking, and offering guidance on improving their Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) credentials.

Gary added: “We were really pleased that the results of the Sustainable Business Coach demonstrated the high standards of our internal sustainability credentials. The Coach was really easy to use and enabled us to look at our own business, providing the encouragement that we are not only doing good by the work we do, but by the way we operate. We are committed to staying on top of our own carbon footprint.”

David Burgess, Director, Business Network, at Virgin Money, said: “Renewable energy is a vital part of our energy sources and we want to support sustainable organisations to help them grow and thrive. Custom Solar has been on quite a journey since its inception, with notable commercial projects that have demonstrated what the team is capable of. We are looking forward to working with the business as it accelerates its growth strategy, offering the financial backing it needs to deliver and exceed its customers’ expectations.”

Custom Solar was advised on corporate finance by fellow Chesterfield Champion BHP, with a team led by Partner, Kevin Davies, and Tim Brind, Director.

Kevin said: “We are delighted to have been able to support Custom Solar on this next step in its exciting development. It is a fantastic business that sits right at the heart of the current environmental narrative, supporting UK business in its drive for sustainable energy sources.”

Custom Solar supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 200 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

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Chesterfield Champions reflect on 2021 and look ahead to the new year

As we enter the festive season and the new year, Chesterfield Champions have been sharing their successes and reflecting on the challenges and progress made throughout 2021.

If you love Chesterfield and would like to chat about becoming a Champion, find out more at: https://www.chesterfield.co.uk/destination-chesterfield/champions/

Find out what local businesses and organisations had to say below, as we head into 2022.


Rod Auton, Chesterfield Canal Trust

“It’s weird to think nothing happened for the first four or five months of the year, but we adapted wonderfully.  This resulted in our trip boats and our Information Centre & Shop both being really busy; and more than 1,000 seats booked on our Chesterfield Santa Special cruises.

“The restrictions have made people explore their own town more and discover how great it is, including the canal where towpath use has gone up hugely. We are now looking forward to the final Government approval of the Staveley Town Deal next spring, receiving the money and starting detailed planning of the restoration of our beautiful canal. We are also working out our carbon footprint as a first step towards becoming a carbon net-zero organisation.”


Amy Revell, We Are Spaces

“I have been super impressed with how resilient and positive the Chesterfield business community is. Everyone is supporting one another and are super ambitious for the future. Chesterfield has performed strongly against all the national statistics in relation to unemployment and job creation, especially for under 25s, which is fantastic news.

“I am hoping the risk and consequences of COVID reduces as we move into 2022. It’s been a tough few years for many, but I know we will continue to be resilient, push innovation and draw new investment into our fantastic town of Chesterfield!”


Howard Freeman, Shorts Chartered Accountants

“2021 was yet another challenging year for the region’s businesses, with many continuing to show resilience and diversification. I’m proud of the way our region has pulled together and facilitated new opportunities, with many businesses going from strength to strength. We’re looking forward to 2022 when we hope to see even more of a return to the normality, that we all recognise.”


Nick Hogan, Chesterfield Escape Rooms

“After opening on 17th May 2021, we have had over 5000 players through our doors, and this has given me the confidence to expand the business and create a fourth room.  I am really excited about the new Chesterfield Games Quarter which will service all of the gaming needs of the town.”


Fiaz Sadiq, ActionCoach

“We’ve celebrated a number of successes in 2021, not least doubling our team members and clients. I have been really impressed with the resilience of the Chesterfield community and it wanting to help each other. I hope in 2022 that there is more financial support for local business and supporting wellbeing in the community.”


Joe Cattee, Director, Peak Pharmacy

“The challenges we’ve faced this last year have been extraordinary. We’ve had to adapt our pharmacies, depots and offices to ensure that they are as Covid compliant as possible, whilst juggling staff shortages due to positive tests results. Despite this we have managed to administer nearly 50,000 Covid jabs to date, as well as provide 48,000 flu vaccinations.

“Our staff have been fantastic during this whole process. Looking to 2022, we are looking to really invest in the area next year, relocating our sites into one depot. This will support our ambition to be as sustainable as possible and being as carbon neutral as possible over the next decade.”


Richard Fowler, Technical Sales and Account Manager, Ra Information Systems

“Having worked alongside our customers for over two decades we have seen technology play a pivotal role in enabling business success and continuity. We have worked closely with our customers throughout 2021, supporting them to adjust to changing demands. We were delighted that our proactive approach to product development was recognised when we won the Flexible Space Association award in Technology Innovation 2021.”


Chris Sellars, Managing Director, Bridge Help

“2021 saw Bridge Help undergo a rebrand, a recruitment drive and a move to larger premises which we have already outgrown. It’s been a year of sustained growth which is showing no signs of slowing down and which means we’ll shortly be moving to larger offices. It’s not just at Bridge Help where I see growth.

“Chesterfield has always had a resilient business community and I continue to be impressed at how businesses have adapted and evolved to both survive and thrive throughout Covid and Brexit. Bridge Help is very proud to be part of the community. The team and I are looking forward to working closely with more local businesses, sports clubs and charities in 2022. Exciting times are ahead.”


Tom Swallow, Development Manager, Bolsterstone Group PLC

“2021 has been a formative year for Chesterfield Waterside. Works continues apace on the Waterside Quarter with Avant Homes with excellent sales progress. Construction of the office block also continues to progress and we are now close to completion. Despite the challenges of Covid, I have been particularly impressed by the resilience of the contractors at Waterside and the continued progress of other exciting schemes across the borough.

“The amount of progress we are now seeing is testament to the investment confidence in the town, Chesterfield Borough Council and their forward-thinking vision. Our office at Waterside, One Waterside Place, will welcome its first tenants next year – that is an office party I am very much looking forward to!


Anna Melton, Director, In the Works PR

Anna Melton - In The Works PR

“The end of year COVID restrictions, while a disappointment, must not overshadow the successes of the town and its businesses. I am very fortunate to work with a number of businesses and projects in the town and I have been so impressed how, uncomplainingly, they have adapted quickly to the ever-changing COVID landscape throughout 2021.

“Their resilience, can-do attitude and forward-thinking makes me very proud to be part of the business community in Chesterfield and I am filled with hope and enthusiasm for 2022.”


Cllr Tricia Gilby, Leader of Chesterfield Borough Council

“It’s been an incredibly challenging year for everyone in our community, but I am deeply proud of the spirit and resilience that has shone through from Chesterfield people and businesses – pulling together to help one another.

“While the pandemic is not over yet, 2022 brings hope and our borough has a bright future. Our ambitious investment and regeneration projects mean we’re in a strong place to recover from the impact of the pandemic at a faster rate than many other towns. We will continue to work closely with the community to make sure Chesterfield remains a thriving borough.”


Peter Swallow, Chair, Destination Chesterfield

2021 has been a year of change and adaptation which has seen the town’s drive, commitment and community spirit come to the fore. As we continue to navigate through one of the most testing periods in recent history we have shown, once again that Chesterfield is resilient and forward thinking.

“New developments have come out of the ground and plans are in place for a further £1billion of developments across the borough. This will bring employment and opportunity to local people, not just in 2022 but far beyond that. Exciting times are ahead for Chesterfield – it is a town, and community, which I am proud to be part of.”


Hannah Bowdler, Junction Arts

“Junction Arts’ main aim for 2021 has been to bring our communities back together again. It has been a year of returning to face-to-face workshops and support within our communities helping people to feel confident and give them something to look forward to. A highlight has been bringing back one of our largest annual events back to the Chesterfield Canal: The Tapton Lock Festival.  And this year was our busiest yet! We were so proud this festival enabled people to reclaim the canal as a space to use and enjoy together at a local event.”


Sarah Temperton, Chief Executive, NLT Training Services

 

“What a year it has been. Like all training providers we have juggled the ever-changing COVID regulations to ensure people can access the training they need to do their jobs properly and safely. It has also opened our eyes to a gap in training provision; older people in particular who find themselves out of work. Looking to 2022, NLT is drawing on its charitable roots and will be working with a number of grass roots charities and groups in the area to ensure that free training is available to help people get work-ready. The team and I are very excited by the prospect.”


Charlotte Watson, Interior Designer, SDE Group

“As always, SDE Group have continued to look at ways in which we can expand. Our latest highlight is the launch of SDE Electrical where we have responded to the continued growth in the electric vehicles market and introduced our EV Charging service. Our 3D Design team have grown due to the increase in demand for 3D design and visualisations, welcoming university graduates to develop their career within interior and industrial design. We are looking forward to another successful year in 2022!”


Rebecca Priest, JP Fire Safety

“As we come to the end of what was meant to be a more positive year, we count ourselves thankful that we have continued to see consistent growth. With an increased workforce and the lease signed on new offices on Beresford Way, 2022 looks set to be another successful year for JP Fire Safety Solutions. By continuing to adapt and develop different ways of working we look forward to a healthy and prosperous 2022.”


Julie Richards, Principal and CEO of Chesterfield College Group

“The sheer determination and willingness of so many local people and organisations to support our students and apprentices to achieve has impressed me this year. I am forever grateful to teaching and support staff of the college for the work they do every day. I must also thank employers for creating so many work experience opportunities this year.

“We have excellent partnerships with employers who are as committed as we are to ensure they have a workforce for the future. I am looking forward to developing even stronger partnerships with employers and exploring more innovative ways to help businesses and individuals bounce back from the effects of the pandemic or take advantage of new opportunities it might have created.”


James Pogson, Director, Northern Tea Merchants

Northern Tea Merchants

“I think we all thought 2021 was going to be a breeze compared to 2020 but in many ways it’s been harder, with even greater uncertainties… Having said that 2021 has still seen huge strides being made by Northern Tea Merchants in our sustainability journey and is something we are really proud of.

“I am delighted to share that ALL our teabags are now made with fully biodegradable teabag paper, and we are working hard on our journey to become carbon neutral and as part of this, we are now planting a tree for every web order placed. We have exciting plans for 2022 which we know many of our tea and coffee devotees are going to really love.”


Theresa Goldsmith, Owner, The Goldsmith Clinic

 

“Another year amidst a global pandemic has been a whirlwind for sure! As a close contact business and a registered nurse practitioner, my main aim is to keep our patients safe and well and we have certainly been kept on our toes with the ever-changing COVID regulations. However, we have managed to grow exponentially in 2021 introducing ground-breaking treatments to The Goldsmith Clinic.

“We are finishing the year on a high by adding another two treatment rooms and taking on a full-time beauty therapist that will appeal to a new customer base for us. The entire team are very much looking forward to 2022 and sharing our passion for skin health with the good people of Chesterfield.”


Neil Johnson, Managing Director, DBCP

“It has been so encouraging to see development projects progressing in 2021 despite COVID restrictions, not only in Chesterfield but throughout Derbyshire bringing real benefits to the local economy. The team at DBCP has been phenomenally busy all year prompting the creation of a number of new jobs.

“And there are no signs of slowing down in 2022, which is a direct reflection of the town’s resilience and can-do approach. Planning for the future demands of DBCP, building control and the town, next year will see us recruit two degree apprentices. The prospect of developing the career of school leavers here in the town is something the team and I are very much looking forward to. Chesterfield really is a town of opportunity.”


Izabella Edwards, Managing Director, Edwards Employment Solutions

“2021 has been another colossal year for many industries and people and, it seems, is not going to end quietly. Despite the pandemic, we have experienced two busy and successful years, helping many key worker industries to find the staff they need. We are also ending the year on a high, having just recruited three new team members – an apprentice and two people via the Kickstart scheme.

“We are committed to giving them the help and support they need to really enjoy and succeed in the industry during the programmes, but more than that, helping them to progress here at Edwards. We are really looking forward to 2022 and helping many more local businesses and people find the staff and jobs they need.”

Posted in About Chesterfield, Blog, Business, Celebrate Chesterfield, Christmas, Destination Chesterfield, Featured, Love Chesterfield, UncategorisedTagged in , , , ,

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