Chris’ Blog: A brilliant Teapot Tour, Keele University MBA plans and an excellent talk from James Timpson OBEChris’ Blog:

Yesterday was the latest instalment of the Teapot Tour series, hosted by Protectapet’s Simon Davis, who is on a mission to create a new passion for the Potteries.

We started at Stoke Station, exploring the Etruia Valley on the way to Middleport, guided by local heritage podcaster Jenna Goodwin.

It was, as these tours always are, a fantastic event that really highlighted Staffordshire’s rich heritage – which included the only surviving section of Josiah Wedgewood’s original factory, the Etruria Industrial Museum as well as the former Shelton Bar steelworks site.

‘Manchester Unspun’ author Andy Spinoza shared brilliant insights from the regenerations of some of the industrial heritage sites over at Manchester. Some real food for thought!

Simon has now launched The Teapot Factory CIC, a community interest company, to take on key projects breathing new life into industrial heritage sites. Looking forward to hearing more about this as it continues to gather momentum.

You may have seen on our social media channels that we welcomed the visionary CEO of the Timpson Group, James Timpson OBE to Staffordshire on Wednesday to share some of the secret tactics he uses to hire and retain the best talent for his business.

James shared some fantastic insights around skills – an issue that is constantly flagged as a major concern for businesses during our lobbying work.

James was also joined by award-winning entrepreneur Adam Whitehouse and Perry Smith of Hays, who both shared unique perspectives into apprentices and salary levels.

Thanks to all three speakers for joining us on the day.

We were also delighted to announce that the next event in our Big Business Breakfast series which will be “Economic Insights: Positioning Your Business for Success,” where we’ll delve into the dynamic landscape of politics, economics and banking to equip your business for strategic success.

Joining us for the event will be keynote speaker Vicky Pryce, Chief Economic Adviser at the Centre for Economics and Business Research, who will offer invaluable insights into the economic environment, shedding light on challenges businesses face and what lies ahead.

Book your space to join us on 26 June, here.

On Tuesday we welcomed Colin Rigby, Director of Enterprise at Keele University and Dr. Griff Round to Commerce House to discuss increased business engagement within the full-time MBA offered by Keele Business School.

We had some great discussions centred around the involvement of a different business within each module of the MBA to help inform its curriculum and assessment.

Hopefully this would make for a compelling proposition for both students and organisations.

Finally – today is the last day that Staffordshire businesses can submit a free Staffordshire Chambers Business Awards application.

They take 10 minutes and could unlock a range of new opportunities for your business. What have you got to lose?

Submit your free application, here.