Trowbridge Chamber was founded on 29th January 1901 and we are still here well over 100 years later, representing local business.
Led by an Executive Committee made up of volunteer members of the business community, the President, Vice-President(s) Treasurer and Executive members, the chamber acts as a conduit for business advice, networking opportunities, community integration and promotion and development of the town.
Our Objective is: To promote and strengthen the business community of Trowbridge and District and ensure a vibrant future for Trowbridge.
Our Aims are to:
- be the voice of the local business
- be the natural source of best business practice
- be the prime source of business networking
- grow our membership so we are truly representative of the businesses in our town
Executive Committee and Officers
President – Andy Barlow – Barlow Financial Management 0845 177 0789
Andy Barlow is the owner of Barlow Financial Management, a wealth management business based at Grangeside Business Centre in Hilperton.
Andy moved to Trowbridge in 1976 when his father left the Army, he finished his schooling at John of Gaunt before starting his career in the financial world at Lloyds Bank, Trowbridge.
He has been married to Andrea for 28 years and they have five grown up children and two grandchildren. Andy has always enjoyed his sport playing football in the Trowbridge and District League as well as the Chippenham Sunday League, Rugby for Trowbridge and still plays masters hockey for West Wilts currently representing Ireland Over 50’s at International Masters level.
Specialism – Financial Management
Chairperson – Colin Kay – CK Consultants 07941 288475
Colin is 62 and works as a self-employed education consultant offering services such as project management, research studies, academy conversions, training, funding applications etc. He was headteacher of Clarendon College in Trowbridge from 1996-2011 and since retirement has worked for Wiltshire Council, Bath Spa University and is currently New Schools consultant for the Diocese of Bristol Academies Trust.
Although he actually lives in Bradford on Avon, Colin’s work at Clarendon lead him to become very much involved in the Trowbridge community. He served as President of the chamber from 2013 to 2015 and is currently Chair of the Campus working Group and Trowbridge Community Area Future, and works with the Trowbridge Town Hall and Trowbridge Arts Advisory Group. In his spare time Colin writes novels, the first Fateful gift was published in 2014, and enjoys walking, going to the cinema and watching Bath Rugby.
Specialism – Education, Arts, Politics
Vice President / Honorary Treasurer – Aaron Powis, Pearson May 01225 764441
Aaron is an ACA qualified Chartered Accountant and Chartered Tax Adviser who has worked for Pearson May since moving to Wiltshire in July 2007. Originally from Shropshire, Aaron studied Mathematics at Bath University and then set down roots in Trowbridge after graduating. Aaron mainly deals with owner managed businesses assisting them with compliance, taxation and any ad hoc maters which arise.
Aaron joined the chamber as Honorary Treasurer in May 2013 and became Vice President in March 2015. He has very much enjoyed watching the profile of the chamber increase in the town and hopes to continue to be involved for many more years to come.
Specialism – Finance
Committee Members (in surname alphabetical order)
David Baker – Labyrinth Training 01225 777195
David worked in the Retail sector for small/medium businesses and large supermarket chains for 30 years. He held roles such as General Manager, Area Director and Training Manager for multiple companies. Later he supported over 40 businesses to achieve IiP status through his own business Labyrinth Training.
More recently he has been working with young people between pre-school and school leaver age. This includes working with those with learning difficulties, disengaged students, NEETs and YIPs. David was instrumental in the development of a major programme, organised and facilitated for the Gifted and Talented students at Royal Wootton Bassett School.
To support some elements of this work David has also coached and facilitated workshops for teachers and support staff in schools across Wiltshire and Swindon. He has also supported and enabled numerous Pre Schools to achieve IiP Status, including work in Berkshire.
David was also a school Governor for two years before becoming Chair of Governors at Clarendon College, Trowbridge. He has been invited on many occasions to be a motivational speaker to young people. David was on the local Board of Young Enterprise for nine years, also designing and expediting workshops for students.
David has worked with the Chamber for over 30 years and has served as President. He is also chair of the Trowbridge Town Team and organises the World of Work programme, Teenage Markets and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award schemes.
Specialism – Training, Education, Retail, Trowbridge Town Team, BID, Go! Fish…
Ally Fox – Trowbridge Schoolwear Ltd 01225 753383
Ally Fox set up Trowbridge Schoolwear in 2007, to offer local families quality school uniform at affordable prices, all year round.
Ally initiated the floral TIB displays in St Georges Works where her shop was based before moving to larger premises. Before becoming a business owner she was a civil servant. She has been on the chamber executive for a few years.
Specialism – Retail
Kieran Mcelney – Diamond Days & Student
Kieran Mceleny is a budding business mind, who’s self driven complex for achieving the highest quality, his fashion business is growing into a blossoming career.
Also as a trained dancer he is a strong advocate for health, fitness, entertainment and the arts.
Kieran is involved in a variety of community events and projects all apart of his desire to “pay back” for the support he had had in the past.
Specialism – Fashion, Entertainment, Teenage Market
Roger Newman – RF Newman 01225 762337
Roger Newman FIEx has worked for many organisations and specialised in International Trade. He began his career in Birmingham with an export house within the TI Group where 100% of sales were exported. He served in the RAF in Germany during the Cold War performing air traffic control at what is now Cologne Airport. In fact he was serving in February 1958 on the fateful day which saw the Munich Air Disaster involving the Manchester United Team’s plane.
Roger is an Honorary Fellow of the Institute of Export, having studied with them for three years. Remaining within a manufacturing environment he joined a Birmingham Engineering company developing automotive seals and hoses. In the 1960’s Roger joined the Birmingham Chamber of Commerce Airport Committee. A further career move brought him to Trowbridge in 1973 as International Distribution Manager for Unigate International, where he also found himself as the companies representative on the Trowbridge Chamber of Commerce, in 1982 he was elected onto the Executive and was President in 1994.
With the demise of Unigate Roger formed his own business to offer other businesses his wealth of experience in Export and International Trade.
For over twenty years he has been researching the history of Trowbridge Town Centre and has records for over 7,000 businesses going back more than 200 years, plus an archive of over 5,000 photographs of past and present retail outlets.
Specialism – International Trade, Export, History
Tracy Parker – Owner, Leykers Coffee Central 01225 768844
Tracy began her working life with Tesco Trowbridge and followed their management training programme working there in total for seven years.
She then joined the opening team for Center Parcs Longleat on the retail section, setting up and developing the fresh foods areas. Following this Tracy worked for a training company delivering retail / customer service training in store to both independent and national retailers and was in charge of the South of England with 20 trainers under her supervision.
Tracy’s parents have always been self employed, her father was a publican in Trowbridge and the surrounding area for over 35 years. So opening her own business always seemed the natural progression.
In 1999 Tracy opened the first Leykers Coffee Central in White Hart Yard Trowbridge with her husband Graham. They developed the business, in additional locations, to a million pound turnover and employed in excess of 50 people.
When the recession hit they sold off some of the business but also had to close others. This was a very difficult time but probably taught her more about business than any other period in her career.
The biggest lesson was probably the importance of business being involved in the community. It not only helps your business but helps other businesses and the town as a whole. As an independent retailer she also finds it motivating to be involved.
Tracy was successful in becoming one of the Small Business 100 in 2015.
Specialism – Retail, Leisure & Hospitality, Community