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Discover how the Association of Gloucestershire Business Groups can help your business

PUBLISHED: 10:13 13 April 2017 | UPDATED: 10:13 13 April 2017

The city of Gloucester (c) Caron Badkin / Shutterstock

The city of Gloucester (c) Caron Badkin / Shutterstock

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The Association of Gloucestershire Business Groups will be listening at the Gloucestershire Business Show 2017 - see how they can help you!

Since its inauguration, the Association of Gloucestershire Business Groups (AGBG) hit the Gloucestershire roads in late 2016, the Business Group has gone from strength to strength - partners now include Gloucestershire Business Show (GBS), Market Towns Forum Ltd, Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) and Gloucester Rugby Club. The AGBG is a voluntary organisation with no membership fees and includes the 16 independent town business groups, but crucially IT is open to all – all businesses, all groups, all sectors.

The Association has evolved over the last six months and is working hard to bring the towns of Gloucestershire and micro-businesses across the county to discuss and really listen to the issues that are affecting them and their local communities. The idea of Claire Thayers of Claire Thayers Associates, along with CEO of Cheltenham Chamber, Michael Ratcliffe – they are the driving force behind the Association.

Claire comments, “Our strapline has evolved to become ‘we are listening’ and we are – we have listened and we are still listening, but crucially we are now taking action to drive through change to some of these issues. I cannot believe how fast the Association has developed in the last 5-6 months and would like to extend my thanks to all those who have come along and supported our informal, but effective brunch mornings – 5 each month in 5 different locations across the county – and discussed the issues that really are hitting businesses.”

Issues that include the just about managing (JAM) businesses, the business rates disparity; the visitor economy (including tourism); the car parking and rate pressures across the county; to the lack of required skill-set in Gloucestershire – to name a few. It is with this in mind, that the Association is partnering the Gloucestershire Business Show at this year’s event, taking place on 17 and 18 May 2017. Claire will be chairing a number of Q&A panels, with invited guests, on visitor economy debates, discussions on the plight of the High Street as well as issues affecting food and agriculture.

Pete Allison, GBS Director explains, “Our partnership with the AGBG has been instrumental in enabling the GBS team to reach out to business communities across the county; many of the seminars that are part of the Business Show programme have evolved through the dynamic discussions that have taken place over the AGBG brunches. Working together with organisations such as the AGBG has informed our thinking to develop a relevant, exciting and diverse programme.”

Claire continues, “Being part of the GBS will enable us to discuss key issues raised over the past six months, with a larger audience and expert speakers, from out the county as well as within. We want to promote and demonstrate how the AGBG is working towards resolving these issues with measures to actively lobby to Government.”

Claire concludes, “The AGBG will also be running this year’s Business Advice Centre and partners, sponsors and supporters of the AGBG will be there to help to connect you with your local business group, signpost you at the show to those who can help and offer services such as a laptop to use, charging point, WIFI connection, rooms that can be booked for private meetings and a generally good place to meet to discuss these issues and more.”

For more information and the brunch morning (5 a month round the county) calendar of events, please visit www.AGBGGlos.co.uk or tweet us with your issues @AGBGGlos.

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