President's Heartbeat 1st August 2019

Yeovil is now capable of confidently punching above its weight.

The expanding suite of Chamber member benefits and business support took a significant step forward today. Following a recent request from Neil Discombe, MD of Chamber member business Garador, I met with representatives from Garador, Chamber, SSDC Economic Development and Leonardo Helicopters at Garador today to discuss the concept for a manufacturer's best practice network. Our brief, but productive meeting agreed the way forward for a working party under the Chamber umbrella, to establish and deliver a sector-wide network for engineering and manufacturing businesses located in and around Yeovil.

The proposed network is envisaged as sharing generic and specific best practices, providing mutual support and identifying potential supply chain and other business opportunities. Despite Yeovil enjoying a long history as a manufacturing town, Chamber membership from the engineering and manufacturing sector is currently very low. The new network will also serve to encourage Chamber membership for manufacturers, delivering member benefits, big-picture insight and reasons to stay and flourish in Yeovil, feeling they are part of the growing Yeovil success story. I said at the meeting, Yeovil is now capable of confidently punching above its weight; especially from within the manufacturing and engineering sector, which would assist with the town centre regeneration and release yet more of the massive potential of the town.

Talking of which; as I arrived at Garador, I spotted the diggers, commencing groundwork on the new £13m iAero facility, located opposite Garador at the south-east corner of Leonardo airfield. More good news, and a very visible sign of economic development at the western gateway to Yeovil.

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Released on 07/08/2019