Forum outlining support available to businesses hailed as success

Sudbury town centre Picture: GREGG BROWN

Sudbury town centre Picture: GREGG BROWN - Credit: Gregg Brown

The director of Gainsborough’s House museum was among the speakers at an event in Sudbury to demonstrate support available to businesses in the area.

Mark Bills, director of Gainsborough's House Picture: ANDY HOWES

Mark Bills, director of Gainsborough's House Picture: ANDY HOWES - Credit: Andy Howes Photograph

Around 50 business people attended the free business forum, which was organised by Babergh District Council and the New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) Growth Hub.

Mark Bills was joined by Jenny Antill from Sudbury Town Council, Ben le Coq and Glen Richardson of Carter Jonas, Bev Baker from Thomas Gainsborough School, Cathy Frost, Ipswich Vision coordinator, and Andy McMillan from Babergh District Council’s Open for Business Team at the event.

The forum was held to inform businesses of the support available from the council and the LEP, which includes long-term planning to revitalise the town centre and small business grants.

Delegates at the event included local shop keepers, photographers, manufacturers and those with an interest in the growth of the town.

Presentations included an update on Babergh’s Vision for Prosperity, launched in the summer, which sets out the key developments planned in Sudbury to boost its position within the region as a key destination.

Attendees also heard from property specialists Carter Jonas on plans for the town’s Hamilton Road Quarter with a new development prospectus that launched at the event, and an update about the Sudbury Congestion Relief Scheme progress.

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Simon Barrett, Babergh District Council’s portfolio holder for growth, said: “We at Babergh are determined to lead the growth agenda all across our district, and today’s event brought together many of the players and projects that are shaping the future of business development in our area.

“The event was on the key themes of branding, positivity, community and partnership, and I’m sure the delegates took those ideas to heart, together with a more rounded understanding of the work that is going on – often behind the scenes – to ensure our future is prosperous.

“I’m thrilled to have been able to have chaired such a forward-looking and positive event.”

Richard Glinn, senior business growth adviser at the New Anglia Growth Hub, said: “We reach out to local businesses all across Suffolk, and this type of forum is an excellent way for us to engage with the businesses which can benefit from our services.

“Working with the council, agencies and local businesses themselves, we’re able to build a better picture of the business landscape and improve our help and advice offer.

“I’d strongly encourage anyone in business – or thinking of starting a business – to contact the Growth Hub.

“Our services are free, confidential and tailored to your business. We’ll help you be more efficient, introduce you to others who can help, and potentially offer grants to help you be more successful.”