CHAMBER TALK – A monthly column by Spalding and area Chamber of Commerce President Phil Scarlett

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Reasons to be cheerful in 2013

Enough has been reported on the Red Lion Quarter during the year and we have to hope and believe that South Holland District Council will learn from the mistakes made. We have heard lots on the rail hub and on town centre plans to regenerate Spalding but little substance as yet has materialised.

On a disappointing note, 2013 will be the last Flower Parade and Chamber are conscious we will lose this opportunity to showcase the area. It has never been simply about the Parade but about the chance to show off Spalding. We are facilitating a meeting of stakeholders in both the Flower Parade and Food Festival in January to explore what new event should be introduced.

Our members unanimously asked us to seek funding from the council’s s106 fund that is designated for the promotion and marketing of Spalding Town Centre and for the appointment of a Town Centre manager. We believe that with support the right individual can deliver a vibrant plan to promote the town.

We look forward to more details of a Holland Market development. Chamber are supportive of an in town development as opposed to another edge of town retail complex but we need to see the details of how the “whole” town can be made to work together.

Looking forward to 2013, Chamber will continue to act as the business voice for its members not just in Spalding but throughout South Holland. We support a number of successful business forums and these will continue to provide us with input on issues that need to be resolved and opportunities shared. Next year there will be a new format

to the Spalding Visitors Guide. Chamber have worked closely with Newton Press to provide a guide for both residents and visitors to our area. 20,000 copies will be printed and distributed within this area and neighbouring counties to highlight the many attractions.