Newbury Business Today

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Newbury Weekly News

OWN TRADE elissa Hughes wbury BID, page 32 UP FOR AWARD Mo Firouzabadian Lifecycle Software, page 37 Newbury Business at the heart of your community Today Working on mental health Housebuilder employee urges workers to access services provided by employers Date: 4.11.2021 Distributed with the Newbury Weekly News T M Ne

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and are unaware of the support available to you through your em- ployer both inside and outside of work, please make it your business to find out. “It could really help make a dif- ference to your mental state and overall health and wellbeing.” Additional training for David Wilson Homes’ employees was re- cently organised by Mental Health First Aid England. This was conducted via an online portal as a result of the pandemic restrictions at the time. The employees who attended were encouraged to share their own experiences of mental health struggles. This was done to not only aid their learning and understanding of all of the issues that can have an effect on someone’s mental health, but to improve collegiality in the work sphere. David Wilson Homes Southern managing director Campbell Gregg said: “The mental health of our em- ployees matters. “I’d like to take this opportunity to reassure our amazing staff mem- bers that David Wilson Homes will continue to throw its weight be- hind mental health programmes and services as we’re here to help. “As the UK’s leading housebuild- er, we will always offer mental health first aid training to our em- ployees. “The David Wilson Homes men- tal health first aiders are a credit to the company and offer fantastic support to their colleagues.”

FOLLOWING World Mental Health Day last month, a David Wilson Homes mental health first aider is encouraging any- one facing a mental health bat- tle to use the services provided by their employers. According to the charity Mind, one in four people will experience a mental health problem of some kind each year in England; with one in six people reporting experi- encing a common issue, like anx- iety and depression, in any given week. Hungerford-based David Wil- son Homes Southern is making a conscious effort to support its em- ployees if they are going through a difficult time by appointing more mental health coaches and run- ning workshops for staff members. Paul Vincent is one of the estab- lished homebuilder’s employees who, with the company’s full sup- port, has undergone training in mental health first aid. He was inspired to undergo the mental health training at David Wilson Homes after grasping the significance of the subject and feel- ing a strong urge to not only be a sounding board for friends and family, but for fellow colleagues as well. Mr Vincent said: “Workplaces are adapting and starting to grasp that not every employee is in a good headspace all of the time. “Life can be tough and work can be a factor which leaves people susceptible to commonly known problems such as anxiety, low mood and stress.

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David Wilson Homes mental health first aider Paul Vincent “David Wilson Homes is taking ownership of its staff’s issues and leading from the front by putting services in place to assist and sup- port.

“Myself and my fellow mental health first aiders are in place to advise, console, listen, learn and soothe. “If you’re suffering in silence

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Thursday, November 4, 2021

Newbury Weekly News

sations are experiencing staff- ing issues and it’s dishearten- ing to see some venues forced to close for temporary periods. There are mixed emotions for business owners, who are delighted to receive Christ- mas bookings but concerned how they’ll be able to provide a great customer experience with reduced staffing levels. It’s hard to know what the solution is in the short-term, but there’s certainly a need for a long-term strategy to attract workers back into hospitality and leisure. We also can’t ignore the im- pact Covid may have on the town centre again this Christ- mas, with caution being urged by public authorities. We have designed our Christmas events with safety in mind – the Christmas Lights Switch- On Festival and the Victorian Christmas Fayre are taking place outdoors and have clear event safety plans in place. Town centre shops and ven- ues continue to assess and mit- igate risks and are committed to ensuring Newbury is a safe, welcoming, and joyful place to visit this Christmas. From a personal point of view, I remain hopeful that residents and visitors will embrace everything Newbury has to offer over the coming months. The energy and en- thusiasm our team are put- ting into creating Newbury’s Christmas experience is admi- rable and certainly stands us in good stead for success. Entrepreneurs’ relief claims for £5.95bn in the South East MORE than one in eight (13 per cent) claims for En- trepreneurs’ Relief were for gains of more than £1m in 2019/20, with the average claimed at just over £627,000, new anal- ysis from Handelsbank- en Wealth Management shows. Entrepreneurs’ Relief, which allowed an effective Capital Gains Tax rate of 10 per cent on gains from busi- ness disposals over a lifetime of up to £10m, was replaced in the March 2020 Budget by Business Asset Disposal Relief, which limits gains to £1m. Handelsbanken Wealth Management’s Freedom of Information (FOI) request to HMRC found business own- ers in the South East account- ed for more than a fifth (21 per cent) of chargeable gains qualifying for Entrepre- neurs’ Relief worth £5.95bn, according to the most recent data. Handelsbanken Wealth Management head of tax Mark Collins said: “The num- bers of business owners ben- efiting from Entrepreneurs’ Relief has remained rela- tively stable for the past few years at around 46,000 while the value of chargeable gains has increased marginally over the same period.”

Legal Question Time

How to prepare for remote hearing in family matters

PRIOR to the pandemic, virtually all family hearings took place in person at court. The courts have had to adapt very quickly to the new ways of working and as such, they have introduced remote and paper hearings to minimise attendance at court. What is a remote hearing? A remote hearings take place by telephone or video. The parties and their legal representatives are not required to attend court in person. The court papers, namely the Notice of Proceedings, will clearly confirm whether the hearing will be remote, in person or on paper. How to prepare for a remote hearing? It is very important to provide your contact details and the contact details of any legal representatives to the court as soon as possible.

or Zoom meeting. At the start of the remote hearing, you will be asked to confirm that you are alone and not recording the hearing. You will also be asked to place yourself on mute if you are not speaking. You should wear smart clothes as if you were attending the hearing in person. If you are representing yourself, you should ensure that you have easy access to the court papers. For telephone hearings, the court will call you at approximately the start time of the hearing. The court often uses a ‘withheld’ or ‘private number’ so it is recommended that you are available up to one hour before and one hour after the start time of the hearing in case there are delays. For both video and telephone hearings, you are usually allowed to file

is needed before another hearing can take place. If you are given notice of a paper hearing, you should prepare a short position statement summarising your case and the points which you want the court to address. Can I request a hearing in person? Some court hearings are continuing to take place in person due to the seriousness of the circumstances, such as a final hearing in care proceedings. If you require a hearing in person due to a vulnerability which would impact your ability to participate in the proceedings effectively, you should contact the court as soon as possible. n If you have received notice of a hearing and would like to discuss what options are available, please contact Stephanie Vyas in the Gardner Leader Family Team.

You should wear smart clothes as if you were attending the hearing in person

a short two-page document called a position statement beforehand. What is a paper hearing? Paper hearings are increasingly common for the First Hearing Dispute Resolution Appointment (FHDRA) in private children proceedings. A paper hearing does not require you to attend in person or by video/telephone. Instead the hearing will involve the judge reviewing the court papers and making directions (instructions) as to what further evidence

Stephanie Vyas

For video hearings, you will receive an email from the court approximately one day prior to the hearing with a video link and joining instructions. It is very similar to joining a Microsoft Teams

A vital Christmas period for town centre traders

Bringing appointments to your front room

IT’S vital that town centres enjoy a fruitful Christmas trading period this year, writes Newbury BID chief ex- ecutive Melissa Hughes . Retail, hospitality and lei- sure organisations still have a great deal of ground to make up after nearly two years of stilted trading. Although the temporary Business Rates Relief for 2022/23 announced in last week’s Autumn Budget brings some respite, a successful Christmas could still make or break some of the small- er, independent businesses which help to make Newbury unique. One of our aims at New- bury Business Improvement District is to create a compel- ling Christmas experience to attract visitors and shoppers to Newbury. This year, we’ve been fortunate to access the EDRF’s Welcome Back Fund via West Berkshire Council to support our efforts. Newbury Town Council also contributes funding to- wards the Christmas lights each year, easing the burden on Newbury’s businesses to fund Christmas in Newbury. We have an ambitious, long-term vision to position Newbury as one of South East England’s key Christmas des- tinations. We are lucky to live and op- erate in a town which has so many desirable ingredients – modern, open-air shopping in a historic, waterside location,

with a vibrant arts scene and a strong sense of community. Our determination to get Newbury on the map means we’re taking our marketing campaign and Christmas events to the next level. Newbury’s first TV advert went live on Sky and Virgin Media in October as part of a 12 Days of Newbury cam- paign, which includes digital, outdoor, broadcast and print media. Our summer campaign (July to September) was a huge success – generating a 157 per cent uplift in visitors to the Visit Newbury website compared to the same period last year and helping to en- sure Newbury’s summer foot- fall performance was strong. We expect even better re- sults from our Christmas cam- paign. There are of course risks and challenges for the busi- ness community as we move towards winter. Many organi- Newbury BID chief executive Melissa Hughes

Newbury Building Society is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority (Financial Services Register number 206077). English Law applies and we will communicate with you in English. We are participants of the Financial Ombudsman Service. We have a complaints procedure which we will provide on request. Most complaints that we cannot resolve can be referred to the Financial Ombudsman Service. 8402 Call: 01635 555700 | Visit: www.newbury.co.uk YOUR MORTGAGE IS SECURED ON YOUR HOME. THINK CAREFULLY BEFORE SECURING OTHER DEBTS AGAINST YOUR HOME. YOUR HOME MAY BE REPOSSESSED IF YOU DO NOT KEEP UP REPAYMENTS ON YOUR MORTGAGE. Building Society Newbury There’s no need to leave the comfort of your sofa; we can come to you. If you’re looking to buy a new home or remortgage, we offer mortgage appointments over the phone and by video call. Book online today.

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Newbury Weekly News

Take part in WBTC 100 Apprentice Challenge Call to levy paying firms to donate towards apprenticeships in West Berks

THERE is no denying that it has been a challenging few years for businesses, both large and small. In response to the pandemic and its effect on the economy, Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced the development and launch of a new system that will allow apprenticeship levy paying organisations to easily donate up to 25 per cent of their levy to smaller organisations. The vast majority of organisations aren’t aware that their unused levy funds (taxes) will automatically go back to the Treasury and be absorbed into the day-to-day costs of government. Newbury MP Laura Farris recently called for the Government to take steps to support the transfer of unspent levy funds from large organisations to small and medium-sized enterprises. Mr Sunak said, “Our small and medium-sized businesses

It has been a difficult time for our economy, and by launching our 100 Apprentice Challenge we are supporting our local community to build back better

industry sector. West Berkshire Training Consortium managing director Matt Garvey said: “It has been a difficult time for our economy, and by launching our 100 Apprentice Challenge we are supporting our local community to build back better. “We have already had a good amount of interest and pledges from employers and we can’t wait to hit that 100 mark.” If you are interested in taking part, or to find out more, please contact karen@wbtc- uk.com

are the cornerstone of our economy, and so I’m thrilled

that we’re making it easier for them to take on apprentices.” In response to this, West Berkshire Training Consortium (WBTC) is launching a new initiative to help levy paying employers to connect with small businesses that need help in growing back after the pandemic. The 100 Apprentice Challenge will be officially launched during a visit from Laura Farris MP on Wednesday, November 10. The 100 Apprentice Challenge aims to secure donations from local employers to fund 100 apprentices. Employers can decide how much to donate and which sectors they want to donate to. Their donations can make

Firms can donate up to 25 per cent of their levy to support the WBTC 100 Apprentice Challenge

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Newbury Weekly News

UCN helps Xtrac apprentices achieve their dream career Fully-qualified production engineer now works with top motorsport teams around world

Chancellor Rishi Sunak extends the incentives for hiring new apprentices AT the recent Conservative Party Conference chancellor, Rishi Sunak announced that the Government had extended cash incentives for hiring new apprentices. Bonuses of £3,000 for every apprentice a business hires were due to end in September but have been extended to the end of January. back into an organisation. Apprentices are a valuable investment; they can boost capacity and add fresh energy and ideas to your business. To discuss the apprenticeship opportunities for your business, contact University Centre Newbury today on (01635) 845000 or email info@ ucn.ac.uk Apprenticeships are an amazing opportunity for companies to reskill or upskill existing staff to build capacity

The huge variety and problem-solving aspect of determining the

XTRAC employee Jamie Rusbridge recently completed his degree apprenticeship, a BEng in mechanical engineering design, at University Centre Newbury (UCN). By following the apprenticeship route, he is now a fully-qualified production engineer working with top motorsport teams around the world. During a recent spotlight chat, Jamie gave an insight into his role at Xtrac and how he achieved the career he wanted. What does your job as production engineer entail? I act as a link between the design office and the shop floor, ensuring that the parts we design can be manufactured. I’m responsible for defining the manufacturing routing, deciding which processes or machines a part needs in order to achieve the final design, along with designing any work holding or tooling

As long as I can remember I’ve been interested in vehicles and inherently motorsport

manufacturing method for complex components and the challenges of working in a fast-paced environment. I greatly appreciate the quality of the engineering I’m surrounded by and the satisfaction of seeing our products in their final applications. Which of your career achievements are you most proud of? Winning the 2015 Apprentice of the Year award was a real boost to the start of my apprenticeship. In 2016, having completed my apprentice factory tour, I secured a position in production engineering, where I’ve worked since. Applications for Xtrac’s award-winning apprenticeship scheme are open from January to March every year. Find out more about their careers by visiting www.xtrac.com

required for processing on each of those machines at each stage of manufacture. What qualifications do you have? I’ve just finished a degree apprenticeship through University Centre Newbury, having achieved my BEng in mechanical engineering design in 2020. Prior to this, during my apprenticeship, I’ve worked from BTEC Level 3 through to Level 6 and NVQ Level 2 to Level 4. What inspired you to pursue the career you have today? As long as I can remember I’ve been interested in vehicles and inherently

Jame Rusbridge

motorsport. I had a really positive experience through my product design classes in sixth form, being lucky in the fact that I was able to do turning, milling, brazing, welding and even some sand casting.

From that point on I knew I wanted a career in engineering and with the combination of engineering and motorsport at Xtrac, the apprenticeship was a perfect fit for me. What do you like most about your job?

ADVERTISEMENT FEATURE Getting down to business at Blue’s SERVING up prime cuts, brisket and burgers

galore in Newbury Market Square, Blue’s Smokehouse has become the place to be. All our BBQ classics are smoked in-house over hickory wood to ensure true, delicious flavour, just what you need for that next brainstorming session. With an authentic attitude and a unique atmosphere, plus dishes to suit every taste, it’s the perfect spot for everything from entertaining clients to working lunches. Study those stats with a chilled Siren in one hand as you enjoy a delicious Mr President Burger or Blackened Salmon Steak – business bites indeed. And at this time of year, we know you’ve got something else on your mind – the Christmas party. If you’re the person nominated to organise the annual winter shindig, you have our sympathies – we know it’s not an easy gig. Finding a venue – and a menu – for your holiday office celebrations that everyone will love is a tall order. You’re probably considering just going where you went

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Picture: James Robinson

last time simply because no one completely hated it, but let’s face it, that’s a bit boring. From delicious bacon- wrapped meatballs to smoked Norfolk Black turkey, we have an absolute cracker of a Yuletide feast waiting for you, a real Blue’s Smokehouse twist on the traditional Christmas dinner. Plus, with a drinks menu packed with craft beer, bourbon and fully loaded

cocktails, you know the good cheer will truly be all around. Elvis might have sung about having a Blue Christmas but he’d never had one at Blue’s. So roll up your sleeves and get ready to impress your colleagues with a menu full of BBQ treats. Book now at www. bluessmokehouse.com We’re looking forward to greet y’all already!

Thursday, November 4, 2021 35

Newbury Weekly News

New duty to prevent sexual harassment in workplace Andrew Egan from Andrew Egan Associates with helpful legal advice for employers

THE Government has recently published a report which states that it will be introducing a new duty requiring employers to prevent sexual harassment in the workplace. The main areas of importance are: n Introducing a mandatory duty on employers to protect protections for employees from harassment by third parties, such as customers or clients. n Extending the time limits for bringing such claims in the Employment Tribunals from three to six months. n Developing a statutory code of practice on sexual harassment and harassment at work (including delineating what steps employers should take to prevent and respond to sexual harassment, and what can be considered in evidence when determining whether the duty has been breached). Under current legislation, employers are already expected to take reasonable steps to prevent workplace harassment, but the new legislation will impose a proactive duty on employers to do so. This will support the existing protection for individuals under the 2010 Equality Act. The Government hopes this will lead to employers being more proactive in preventing workplace harassment and promoting inclusive working environments. The arrival of the new legislation is unsurprising given the Government’s response to a 2019 consultation on sexual harassment in the workplace, BUSINESS confidence in the South East fell by 11 po i n t s dur i ng Oc t obe r to 21 per cent, the lowest of all UK regions and na- tions, according to the lat- est Business Barometer from Lloyds Bank Commer- cial Banking. Companies in the region reported lower confidence in their own business prospects month-on-month, down 12 points at 24 per cent. When taken alongside their optimism in the economy, down nine points to 19 per cent – also the lowest in the UK – this gives a headline con- fidence reading of 21 per cent. The Business Barometer questions 1,200 businesses monthly and provides early signals about UK economic trends both regionally and nationwide. A net balance of 18 per cent of businesses in the region expect to increase staff levels over the next year, down one point on last month. Overall UK business con- fidence remained steady month-on-month dipping by just three points to 43 per cent and remaining comfortably above the year-to-date aver- age of 26 per cent. Hiring in- tentions were unchanged on September’s reading at 37 per cent, while firms’ optimism in the economy (down four their staff from sexual harassment at work. n Introducing explicit

discrimination or have supported someone who has made a complaint of sex discrimination. In addition to an award of damages for actual losses they have suffered, employees who claim sexual harassment can be compensated for injury to feelings. They have the right to make a claim under the 1997 Protection from Harassment Act through the County Court within six years from the incident(s). Following the new legislation, Employment Tribunals will expect employers to at least introduce an equality and anti-harassment policy and effective staff training in the workplace. Employers should also consider whether they are currently complying with their legal duties, such as the requirement to take reasonable steps to prevent harassment and to remedy this if they have not already. Employers should review how their staff report harassment,

clarify issues of privacy and confidentiality, handle disclosures in a sensitive manner, train investigators to handle case sensitivity, use the right terminology and keep the victim informed. They should also ensure investigations and procedures are not prejudiced against women or minority groups. Employers should also encourage training, bearing in mind that some workers and workplaces are more vulnerable to sexual harassment including lone, night and part-time workers, those with additional needs, younger workers, workers from sexual minority groups or anyone working in any industry where there are high levels of customer contact, client events or alcohol consumption. Overall, employers must adopt a zero tolerance approach to sexual harassment both in principle and in practice. For advice on this subject, call Andrew on 07904 391756 or (01635) 890560.

the importance of the issue and the increased scrutiny of employers. The subject is topical as we have seen several sexual harassment cases hit the headlines this year. For example, a part-time gym worker won a £6,000 sexual harassment pay-out after she was left feeling ‘uncomfortable’ when she overheard her male colleague bragging about his sex life, and a sales manager who was sent derogatory remarks on a work WhatsApp group chat by senior colleagues won £5,000 in a sexual harassment claim. Harassment is defined in the 2010 Equality Act as unwanted conduct which has the purpose or effect of violating a person’s dignity or which creates an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment for a person.

Andrew Egan

‘Unwanted conduct of a sexual nature’ covers verbal and physical treatment, like sexual comments or jokes, touching or assault, as well as emails of a sexual nature or pornographic pictures. An employee may also be victimised because they have complained of sex-related

Under the Act, an employer can be liable if their staff, clients or suppliers harass an employee, and the employer fails to prevent harassment from occurring. In terms of what constitutes sexual harassment in the workplace, this entails being made to feel humiliated, offended or degraded on the basis of one’s sex. Importantly, it makes no difference what sex the individual is or the sex of the person doing the harassing.

Overall, employers must adopt a zero tolerance approach to sexual harassment both in principle and in practice

NWN TRAVEL OFFER New Year Isle of Wight

South East business confidence lowest in UK but in positive territory

About NWN Travel Offers NWN Travel Offers celebrates 25 successful years in 2021! We launched the service back in 1996 to offer good-value breaks And days away with interesting itineraries departing from handy local pickups. Thousands of readers have enjoyed a wide variety of breaks. NWN Travel Offers is simply a way NWN readers can enjoy quality weekends and holidays with the added bonus of travelling with other people from the locality

Stunning coastlines, gorgeous countryside, vibrant towns and award-winning attractions - all on one beautiful, picturesque island. Our hotel is the fabulous Trouville at Sandown which is centrally located on the seafront with panoramic views and famed for its golden sandy beach and the traditional British seafront and pier. All twin and double rooms come with a sea view. * Live entertainment every night * Hot Drink every afternoon, with a slice of Cake on arrival * Bumper Quiz of the Year * Gala Dinner * Champagne Toast at midnight followed by a Light Buffet * Bucks Fizz Brunch Thursday December 30th: We cross by ferry to the Isle of Wight and on to our hotel in Sandown. New Year’s Eve: We view the magnificent coastal scenery along the south of the island as we travel to Alum Bay for a short stop overlooking the Needles. We then call in at Yarmouth with its continental atmosphere and picturesque harbour. Back to the hotel in time for a cup of the tea and the Bumper Quiz of the Year before the evening Gala Dinner and Entertainment. New Year’s Day: Following our leisurely Bucks Fizz Brunch we visit the seaside resort of Shanklin, a traditional seaside town that regularly tops the charts for the number of sunshine hours and has a great beach, shops and cafes. It also has an Old Town that is worth exploring. Sunday: A final drive across the island before catching our ferry back to the mainland.

points to 44 per cent) and con- fidence in their business pros- pects (down one point to 42 per cent) were down marginally. All UK nations and regions reported positive confidence readings for the seventh con- secutive month. Firms in London (up three points to 65 per cent), the North East (un- changed at 61 per cent) and the East Midlands (up eight points to 55 per cent) had the highest confidence readings, while, af- ter the South East, businesses in Wales (down 23 points to 23 per cent) had the lowest over- all confidence level. Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking regional director for the South East Paul Evans said: “South East businesses reporting a downturn in con- fidence for the first time since July, along with declines in trading and hiring prospects, is a reminder that the road to recovery is bumpy. “ “This is especially true for the region’s hospitality indus- try, which of course had only half a summer to make up for lost time following the lifting of restrictions in July.” From a sector perspective, confidence remained strong- est in manufacturing, rising to a five-month high of 51 per cent (up two points from 49 per cent) with trading prospects being particularly positive (60

per cent expecting stronger activity in the year ahead). Additionally, 68 per cent of manufacturing firms are planning on bringing all fur- loughed staff back which is more than any other sector. However, these firms are also less likely to say it is easier to find people with the right skills and experience. Business confidence in re- tail and services fell slight- ly to 37 per cent (down five points from 42 per cent) and 43 per cent (down four points from 47 per cent) respectively, although they remain higher than three months ago. Fifty-nine per cent of firms in both retail and services ex- pect all their furloughed staff to return. Higher proportions of firms said that it is becom- ing easier to hire people with appropriate skills and experi- ence proportions (46 per cent in retail and 53 per cent in ser- vices, compared with 41 per cent in manufacturing). Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking senior economist Hann-Ju Ho said: “While eco- nomic optimism saw a slight dent in October due to rising costs and the on-going supply chain issues, it is clear that firms are still feeling relative- ly buoyant as overall business confidence remains high and above the long-term average.”

£479 to include Return coach travel; Tours as indicated; Ferry crossings; Hotel accommodation of Bed, Breakfast & Evening Meal. No single supplement. (Some single seaview rooms available at a supplement). Optional travel insurance £27

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Thursday, November 4, 2021

Newbury Weekly News

Codelocks celebrates 30 years of innovation Newbury firms looks back on three decades of growth and to future too

By DOMINIC RYAN Operations director Codelocks

has been proven capable of eliminating the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus (Covid-19) within minutes. Not surprisingly, it’s been popular with businesses and organisations such as in education and healthcare environments, offices, shops, and restaurants. A great team You don’t run a successful business for 30 years – and survive a world-wide pandemic – without having a great team. And there’s no doubt that one man in particular – Colin Campbell, who joined us in 2015 and is now managing director – has made a big contribution to our current success. One of Colin’s biggest challenges was to see us through the pandemic – and he’s done a great job. “The business was already in a good position to ride out some tough months, and we quickly put a plan together,” Colin said. “We began by reassuring all staff that their jobs were safe. And we’re proud to say we lost no employees because of the pandemic.” But what really helped us was that Colin (and the rest of the team) had already built a resilient business. We have strong financial management, great supplier relations, a loyal customer base and passionate workforce. Loyal customers We wouldn’t be where we are today without our customers – both the locksmiths and installers that fit our products, and the clients that use them. We put our customers first. What’s next for Codelocks? Over the next 30 years, we plan to continue our rapid product innovation programme and grow and expand the business. I am proud to say that the company still has the same feel as when I first joined in the early 1990s. From humble beginnings in a flat in Central London, a worldwide company has evolved. So, as we celebrate our 30th birthday, let’s raise a glass to all our staff, colleagues, partners, and customers – past, present, and future. Here’s to another 30 years of success. Cheers!

HOW quickly time passes! As Codelocks celebrates its 30th birthday, I can’t help feeling amazed – and proud – of what the company has achieved. I’d like to take this opportunity to look back at the origins of the business and thank the many people that have helped us get where we are today. The story so far... It all started from Red Lion Square, Central London. Dorothea and Desmond Ryan taking calls in the fourth floor flat, running down five flights of stairs to the basement where the stock was stored. Then they’d take the orders around the block to the post office for dispatch. As business rapidly took off, and their legs began to resent the multiple trips up and down stairs, they rented a small unit at the back of the square to increase stockholding and

Codelocks HQ on Greenham Business Park

Though we’re still pushing the boundaries with our latest smart locks, we never forget that we built our customer base by offering a wide range of practical solutions. One of our early mechanical locks for example, the CL255 mortice latch, is still hugely popular, standing out from the crowd with its premium finish, and our 50p-shaped thumb turn. Another product that has outlived many of its competitors, is the CL5010 Heavy Duty Tubular Mortice Latch. To me this is the holy grail; an electronic lock with a solid mechanical foundation that provides access control without the expense of installing a hard- wired traditional system. The CL5010 was a milestone on our electronic lock roadmap bridging the gap between mechanical and electronic locks. An eye on the future While there is still a lot of demand for our traditional product lines, our ability to innovate as we develop new products and services is core to our success in new and existing markets. Our app and web-based access solutions, for example, enables us to appeal to a wider audience, and customers are finding ever more interesting ways to utilise our technology. Our KitLock by Codelocks locker locks, have been used to provide secure, flexible access to equipment in recording studios, to create VIP storage solutions at music festivals, and to enable sports fans to book and gain access to lockers at football stadiums from their smart phones. We are quick to react to changing circumstances in order to support our customers, too. In 2020 we released Clean by Codelocks – a photocatalytic coating that

improve logistics. I helped out, running smaller orders to the post office and visiting local customers. This happy arrangement continued for a year, until the business outgrew our small stock unit. We needed more space, but that was expensive in Central London. We also needed a computer system to create accounts, raise invoices, load stock on to – and generally keep pace with the company expansion. As luck would have it, Desmond’s brother was a self- taught computer whizz. Better still, living in Somerset, this offered us the opportunity to rent warehousing space at far more reasonable rates. We also took on another employee in dispatch and recruited two part-time office clerks for invoicing and telesales. Meanwhile Desmond and Dorothea were searching for a place outside London to both live and ultimately relocate the Codelocks operation. Which brought us to Newbury, and we have been here ever since, although our rapid expansion has led us to move three times in and around the town itself. On our third move, we opted for a new-build project that would give us plenty of room to continue to grow. Our recipe for success Of course, surviving for 30 years in a rapidly changing world doesn’t happen by accident. Here are a few of the things that I believe have contributed to our success. Family values Though much has changed in the access control industry, I’m proud that Codelocks still has the same family values as when I first joined in the early 1990s, when there were just three of us servicing our core industry distributors. I am also happy to say that we still supply those distributors today. The family has always been very hands-on with the running of the company, from operating the warehouse and talking to customers, to getting out and visiting sites. We try to impress the same ethos with our management team. We strive to be inclusive and value our people as individuals. A strong product range

Codelocks is proud of its range of products

Delivering peace of mind to the Newbury community for 125 years.

Free 30 minute initial consultation available for: • Making or updating a Will • Lasting Powers of Attorney • Divorce or separation • Child agreements & Child Care arrangements • Financial arrangements • Pre- and post-nuptial agreements • Cohabitation

White Hart House, Market Place, Newbury RG14 5BA 01635 508080 | gardner-leader.co.uk

A Codelocks staff party

Thursday, November 4, 2021 37

Newbury Weekly News

All you need to know about the Bank of Mum and Dad Newbury Building Society’s advice on much-used method of buying a home for under-35s

THE Global Telecom Awards, or GLOTEL, has named Lifecycle Software as a finalist in the BSS/OSS Transformation Excellence category. A partnership between Newbury-based Lifecycle and SMARTY and its impact on the telecom market was one of the key points for the nomina- tion. The companies, products and services shortlisted for a Global Telecoms Award rec- ognise innovation and excel- lence from the firms involved in advancing and transform- ing the telecoms industry. Lifecycle Software chief executive Mo Firouzabadian said: “Lifecycle’s data-driv- en approach has enabled 99.5 per cent of transactions to be fully automated, allowing our customers to focus on their customers. “We are very honoured to be shortlisted for this pres- tigious award. Our work with SMARTY has made a differ- ence for hundreds of thou- sands of customers during the pandemic with a digital-first customer experience and be- ing spotlighted as a finalist makes us very proud.” The UK’s telecom scene has been shaken in the last few years with the introduction of disruptive players. Lifecycle Software, a global online charging system, bill- ing and business support sys- tem solution provider – with offices in Sterling Industrial Estate, Kings Court – was key to the debut of major new suc- cess SMARTY, delivering an honest, simple mobile service. The partnership between Athena in November THE West Berks Athena Network has four topics for its November meetings, the last monthly meetings of the year. Helen Bantock from Kite Web Design will highlight the benefits of having a website that works with your social media at the Newbury West group on Thursday, Novem- ber 11. On Friday, November 12, Tanya Gaffon from Distink- tiv encourages others to en- gage in smarter marketing through her talk titled ‘How not to have a marketing one- night stand’ at the Hunger- ford meeting. Keeping the online theme, Fiona Jones from Number- work Services will be sharing her advice on tips to Newbury East members on preparing for the ‘Tax Digital era and how to manage your business finances more effectively’. The last meeting of No- vember is on the 18th when the Newbury Central group will have a session with Suze Mannion of Style by Suze, who will be sharing her handy tips on how to stay ‘on trend’ with an autumn/win- ter wardrobe without spend- ing a fortune. Athena meetings take place online monthly from noon to 2pm. Visitor places can be booked in advance by email- ing caroline.snowdon@thea- thenanetwork.com

for a first-time buyer. Commonly known as BO- MAD for short, this structure is normally used in the context of a property purchase. It involves a house buyer’s parent, grandparent or guard- ian providing financial assis- tance towards a deposit or to financially support their mort- gage application. There are commonly three categories that fall under- neath Bank of Mum and Dad: 1. Gifted deposit; 2. Borrow- ing on a family home; 3. Joint mortgage – sole ownership. 1. Gifted deposit Gifted deposit is when a family member can gift a sum of money which will help to- wards their child’s or grand- child’s property purchase. Without a deposit a house hunter is unable to buy a property; therefore, having a deposit will enable you to buy a home and having a larger de- posit could potentially lower the interest rate of the mort- gage. 2. Borrowing on the family home Providing the parent or

FIVE things you should know about… the Bank of Mum and Dad (BOMAD), by Luke Pummell, direct sales manager at Newbury Build- ing Society. The definition of Bank of Mum and Dad The Bank of Mum and Dad (and now also Granny and Grandad) has become more popular than ever. In 2020, gifts from parents, grandparents, friends and relatives were behind more than half of house purchases among the under-35s, accord- ing to research by Legal & General – and this seems set to continue due to rising house prices, slow wage growth and the deposit amount required Grandparents are rapidly becoming more prominent within the lending community “

The parent would be joint- ly named on the mortgage; however the ownership of the property would remain in the name of the child. This means stamp duty on a second home is not payable. 4. Do not forget Grandma and Grandad It is not just down to the Bank of Mum and Dad any- more. In 2019, 32 per cent of 18- to 34-year-olds received financial help from their grandparents to get a foot on the ladder, ac- cording to research by Trus- sle. Whether as an early inher- itance or simply looking to invest spare funds, grandpar- ents are rapidly becoming more prominent within the lending community. If you would like to talk to a qualified mortgage advis- er about helping a relative to purchase their first property, contact us to discuss your op- tions. n Research by Trussle https:// trussle.com/mortgages/blog/ whats-fuelling-the-bank-of- granny-and-grandad

Luke Pummell

grandparent owns their home, equity can be released from their property by raising a mortgage. By doing so, parents can unlock cash on their property to gift their children or grand- children a deposit. 3. Joint mortgage – sole ownership

When applying for a stand- ard mortgage, parents can help their children borrow more by standing as a joint mortgage borrower. This could potentially in- crease the size of a mortgage they are able to achieve and enable them to get on to the property ladder.

Lifecycle shortlisted for top telecom award

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DEGREE LOCALLY University Centre Newbury (UCN) offers an extensive range of higher education opportunities so that you can achieve your degree locally.

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Lifecycle chief executive Mo Firouzabadian Lifecycle and SMARTY ex- hibits 4.2 on Trustpilot and enjoyed 154 per cent growth in H1 2021.

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out of automation capabilities proved essential for SMARTY to manage the business im- pacts of the pandemic. SMARTY does not need to have a large IT organisation to deliver a variety of different customer acquisition strate- gies and a very high level of service, because it self-serves all strategies. More than 99.5 per cent of the transactions are fully automated. The GLOTEL awards win- ners will be announced dur- ing an online ceremony on November 23.

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The success was developed on SMARTY’s customer-cen- tric strategies to address and build rapport with customers’ needs. Lifecycle Software uses a microservices approach to its platform to minimise time to market and invests in product evolution to increase automa- tion and efficiency from tech- nical and operational levels. The improvement and roll-

*When studied as part of an apprenticeship.

38

Thursday, November 4, 2021

Newbury Weekly News

Ticketer excited by its new DRT partnership Hungerford firm improving demand responsive transport in rural areas

electronic ticket machines (ETMs). The third element is Con- nection Protection, which will provide assurance that there will be a connecting service available. Public transport is a key service that connects people to their jobs and leisure. Passengers in urban are- as often enjoy better public transport options in terms of accessibility and frequency. DRT services aim to bring a similar level of connectivity that is enjoyed in city centres to suburban and rural areas, and a seamless payment expe- rience when changing modes which is a key element for the success of any multimodal programme. Presenting a consistent user experience through ticket- ing that works on both a DRT service and fixed-line buses, alongside accepting payment methods like EMV contact- less, ITSO or cash, will help get more people out of their cars and back to public trans- port. The Padam Mobility and

Ticketer collaboration will enable a smooth modal inte- gration through the existing Ticketer ETMs with one sin- gle driver interface, reducing operator costs as well as pro- viding simplicity and flexibil- ity for drivers. For passengers, the travel experience is improved by re- moving any payment friction, and connection protection will ensure a reliable, connected and integrated multimodal service. Ticketer Group general manager UKand international Antonio Carmona said: “This is another step on our path to opening up our Ticketer plat- form to new partners. “We are excited to work with Padam Mobility to bring DRT and conventional public transport networks closer to- gether. “A convenient, reliable and equitable alternative to car travel is the first step in addressing the mobility and sustainability challenges that we have as a society, and this partnership is an important step in that direction.”

HUNGERFORD - BASED public transport ticketing software and information systems provider Ticket- er and smart and flexible mobility solutions provid- er Padam Mobility have formed a partnership wid- ening the opportunities for further demand responsive transport (DRT) integration for operators and local au- thorities. The planned Padam Mobil- ity and Ticketer integration will see further enablement of DRT and fixed-route bus intermodality, along with a new level of flexibility for op- erators in the way they deploy their services. Three key components will provide the impetus to change the DRT landscape for the bet- ter. The first is the ticketing integration between Ticketer and Padam’s mobile app for booking and following DRT trips. The second is DRT driver features that will be avail- able on the existing Charn- ham Lane-based Ticketer’s

Local beers can be enjoyed along the Great West Way in pubs like The Bell at Ramsbury Picture: Great West Way Tourism support for firms on Great West Way

GREAT West Way is work- ing in partnership with VisitEngland, tourism or- ganisations, official tour operators and industry partners to deliver a new travel industry support programme for tourism and hospitality businesses and destinations along or within easy reach of the route. Great West Way is a tour- ing route between London and Bristol which is based on ancient landscape, following 500 miles of navigable routes, roaming through idyllic coun- tryside, quaint villages and elegant towns, including New- bury and Hungerford. The virtual business sup-

port programme is aimed at tourism and hospitality busi- nesses and destinations who are either new to working with the travel trade or for those who are more experi- enced but keen to develop a clearer understanding. It aims to grow volume and value by way of winning new travel trade business and levelling up tourism and the spread of visitors to the re- gion. Content is delivered by VisitEngland as part of its li- censed training programme ‘Taking England to theWorld’. To find out more, visit https://www.greatwestway. co.uk/ambassador-network/ travel-trade-training

Antonio Carmona

This is another step on our path to opening

up our Ticketer platform to new partners

Create a buzz Newbury Business Today can get people talking about your business. For more information on how advertising in Newbury Business Today can help you, please contact 01635 550444

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