Teenage entrepreneur programme hopes to be catch of the day in Trowbridge

A NEW programme which aims to prepare young people for the world of work, or to become a young entrepreneur will officially be launched in Trowbridge tonight.

Go! Fish, which is the brainchild of Trowbridge Chamber of Commerce and Town Team, has been developed to help youngsters aged between 13-19 through a series of workshops to cover issues such as interview techniques, CV writing, marketing, business presentations and leadership skills.

Read the full Wiltshire Times article here



The President of the Trowbridge Chamber of Commerce invites you to join us for our AGM.

This year we are extremely fortunate to have Lance Allan, Trowbridge Town Clerk; who will be presenting on the future developments in Trowbridge:
“Trowbridge Town Council considers that it has a responsibility to care for the whole town, they would like to do this for the town centre through a partnership with local businesses and for some parts of the town which are outside the town boundary, including new developments and business parks. 2016 is a crucial year for decisions relating to these two issues and the Town Clerk, Lance Allan would like the opportunity for those attending the AGM to think about how Trowbridge can move forward for the future.”

The presentation (18:30 – 18:45) is open to non-members of the Chamber and will be followed by the Annual General Meeting (18:45 – 19:30) for members only with the opportunity to network.

The AGM will take place from 6.00pm on Tuesday 5th April at Trowbridge Town Hall where there will be a finger buffet and, wine and soft drinks available.

If you are going to attend it would be helpful to have numbers for catering so please let us know by emailing info@trowbridgechamber.co.uk.


Trowbridge BID

Discover Trowbridge Logo

We are aware of the height of feeling throughout the town centre towards the Trowbridge BID at present, and would like to point out that we need to remain neutral in this matter. Some of our members are for the BID, and others against, and we must reflect their positions.

We have shared information in the past to be of benefit to all businesses affected in the BID area and have representatives on the Task Group, but we have no influence one way or the other with how Mosaic choose to administer the BID development.

We understand that shortly; based on all the information that local businesses have supplied to Mosaic, a draft Business Plan will be available for all those who would pay the levy and that they will have an opportunity to reflect on and respond to the Trowbridge BID Manager.


Go! Fish…



Following a successful bid to Wiltshire Council via the Local Youth Networking Group, The Trowbridge Chamber of Commerce, in association with the Trowbridge Town Team are ready to launch a new programme aimed at the towns young people to prepare them for the world of work, or to become a young entrepreneur.

Sarah Holland, Community Youth Officer for Wiltshire Council says, “This project has been supported by the Trowbridge’s Local Youth Network MG Group and Trowbridge Area Board. It is great to see a project that will help young people develop their entrepreneurial skills happen in Trowbridge. This project will help to provide young people from this local area with new skills to help them develop themselves and provide them with added confidence and self-esteem. I look forward to monitoring this project and the development to the young people involved.”

For more info or to join the programme click here


The Old Manor becomes “The Moonraker”

The Moonraker

The Moonraker LogoWhen Lucy and Tudor Hopkins bought the hotel in July 2013; their intention was to bring to life and celebrate the wonderful beauty, history and food of Wiltshire.

They got to work refurbishing the public areas and guest bedrooms, created a kitchen garden, bought rare breed pigs and, working alongside Chef Matthew Briddon (River Café), started sourcing ingredients from the local farmers and artisans that surround the hotel.

They were delighted in February 2015 to be written up by Olive magazine as ‘modern British hospitality at its relaxed – and romantic – best’.

When they discovered the legend of the Wiltshire Moonrakers in an old book in the Trowbridge museum, we were very excited and felt certain we had found a name befitting of a hotel that
celebrates the history, food and folk law of the area.

They hope you enjoy the story of the Moonrakers as much as they do.


Between the fifteenth and eighteenth centuries the wool produced from the English county of Wiltshire was known and prized all over Europe because of its superb quality. Dutch and Flemish merchants had permanent headquarters in the Wiltshire town of Swindon, attracted there by the high profit obtained from the wool trade.

But there was a problem! The merchant’s favourite tipple was gin from Holland and brandy from France, but that carried a heavy import duty. The solution for the Wiltshiremen seemed obvious, they would have to smuggle in the barrels of spirit and so avoid the import duty.

By the mid-sixteenth century they had established a smuggling operation that would run for more than 200 years. The barrels of spirit were landed in quiet coves on the Hampshire coast and brought up to Swindon by night. The barrels were hidden during the day in church crypts or in village ponds. The green weed in the ponds concealed the barrels beautifully.

One cold and still night, many moons ago, they nearly got caught…the smugglers were raking their barrels out of the village pond when they were surprised by a patrol of excise men.

The smugglers thought quickly and pointed to the moon’s reflection in the pond and told the officials that they were trying to rake in the cheese. The excise men, thinking they were simple local folk, laughed at them and went on their way. The Moonrakers had the last laugh over a tipple… and the legend of the Moonrakers was born!

The Moonraker, Trowle Common, Trowbridge, Wiltshire, BA14 9BL
TEL: +44 1225 777 393 FAX: +44 1225 765 443 EMAIL: reservations@moonrakerhotel.com


Trowbridge Town Team announces the Hitachi “Inspire the Next…” Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award winner to a packed audience

Hitachi & Town Team Logo at BottomThe Trowbridge Town Team this week announced the Hitachi “Inspire the Next…” Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award winner at their Hitachi’s headquarters at Hakuba House. The award, judged by local business people within Trowbridge, recognised the outstanding passion, commitment and dedication of the young entrepreneurs that had demonstrated customer service excellence and commercial awareness in their businesses.

The award, the first of its kind run by the Trowbridge Town Team, was conceived to recognise the commitment and success of young entrepreneurs who took part in the inaugural Trowbridge Teenage Market (part of the Teenage Market Project) in October 2014; with the winner taking away a cash prize of £500.

In January this year, young fashion designer Kieran Mceleny (Diamond – Days), Hannah McBride (Miss Rosina’s Curiosity Cabinet), and Zita Hooper (Music Index); were joined by fellow finalists greeting card designer Leona Curtis (Leona Curtis Design), fashion accessory maker Maxine Aldridge (Buttons and Bows Boutique) and SuperCrafts – a market stall devised by a group of young people selling handmade crafts and bird boxes to raise funds for Larkrise Community Farm, a Trowbridge based charity, were put through their paces by a judging panel made up of representatives from the local business community.  Len Turner Head Judge was very impressed by the standard of the entrants and their enthusiasm for their businesses.

Buttons & Bows winner
Maxine Aldridge – Buttons and Bows Boutique accepts her trophy from Jon Lawes, Managing Director Hitachi Capital Commercial Vehicle Solutions.

It was certainly smiles all-round for the winner of the coveted award; Maxine Aldridge from Buttons and Bows Boutique; who showed the judges her passion and enthusiasm for her business but also a strong business plan for the future and a clear goal of where she wished to invest her prize money to ensure future success for her hand-made hair accessory business.

The delivery of excellent customer service at the Trowbridge Teenage Market was also celebrated; with the three winners taking away holiday vouchers and £100 cash prizes in recognition of going “above and beyond” for their customers.

The Trowbridge Town Team want to thank all of the local businesses and community groups; because without the support of Hitachi Capital Commercial Vehicle Solutions, Wiltshire Council, Trowbridge Chamber of Commerce, Castle Place Shopping Centre, Howard Travel, Trowbridge Town Council, Trowbridge Arts, Youth Development for Young People, St. James’ Parish Church (Trowbridge), Active Trowbridge and the Youth Development Service, this programme would not have been possible.

David Baker, Chair of the Trowbridge Town Team said “it is amazing what young people can achieve through local business help and support. The Teenage Market gave them a platform to gain experience and knowledge. We are intending to organise further Teenage Markets and hopefully will continue with the Young Entrepreneur Award, which would never have happened without the vision and support of Jon Lawes MD of Hitachi Commercial Vehicles.  To support the finalists and other young people a business development programme called WOW (World of Work) is commencing in March and will run until the end of the year.  Local businesses and entrepreneurs will be giving their advice, expertise and experiences’ throughout the programme.  I would also like to recognise the work put in by Ellie Gill our Market Manager”.

Emma Roberts; Chair of the Trowbridge Chamber of Commerce and White Horse Employment’s Support Services Manager, was one of the judges and was truly inspired by those who took part. “The quality of awards entrants, showcased the talented young business owners who are right on our doorstep. Supporting small businesses within the community will see success in the future for the local economy and these young people are the leaders that will take us there. I was very honoured to be asked to judge these young people; and they certainly reminded me that as our businesses grow, we should never lose sight of the passion, enthusiasm and sheer grit to succeed that these young people have demonstrated time and time again. Well done to them all”.


Magna Carta Business Expo event to encourage business success

Business Expo - Discover, Connect, Grow

Square Business Expo Logo on BlackThe Trowbridge Chamber of Commerce, Town Team and Town Council are is staging a special weekend-long event in Wiltshire’s County Town; dedicated to showcasing the diverse and exciting range of businesses that are active, and successful across the county.

The 2015 Business Expo will be held in conjunction with Trowbridge’s Magna Carta 800 Charter Fair between 9.00am and 5.00pm on Friday 24th July and 9.00am to 1.00pm on Saturday 25th July at the modern Trowbridge Civic Centre, and will provide local businesses with the opportunity to promote their companies, as well as collaborate and network.

David Baker, Chair of Trowbridge Town Team, said: “The Trowbridge Chamber has run a number of these all-day Expos in the past and have proved to be one of the most popular events in the business calendar. This year we expect a great turnout, with significant visitors expected over the Magna Carta celebration weekend; what better way to showcase local business and what they have to offer.

Emma Roberts, Chair of Trowbridge Chamber of Commerce,  added; “we are very grateful to our sponsors; apetito, Office Evolution Limited and Hitachi Capital Commercial Vehicle Solutions; because without their support for the local business economy of Trowbridge we wouldn’t be  welcoming such a diverse range of exhibitors showcasing their businesses – an excellent time for local business to discover, connect and grow.”

Stands are booking up quickly; however for anyone interested in exhibiting; there is an early bird discount of 15% from the stand price of £150.00 for stands booked and paid for by 31st March 2015.

For more information on the Business Expo visit www.wilts-business-expo.co.uk, or get in touch by emailing info@trowbridgechamber.co.uk.