Sun shines on business festival

By John Corser | Business | Published:

The sun shone brightly as the Black Country Business Festival went out of doors for a golf day.

Organisor Mick Woodhouse, right and Dave Barron with fellow business golfers at Penn Golf Club

Penn Golf Club played host to the event for teams of four from businesses across the region on day three of the festival yesterday.

The day also provided a networking opportunity and before tee off Ben Johnson from England Golf delivered a short presentation on golf and business links.

Dr Adam Marshall, Director General of the British Chambers of Commerce, praised the festival while attending the Black Country Chamber of Commerce's Business in a post Brexit Britain event before an audience of 120 at the University of Wolverhampton Technology Centre last night.

"I'm really proud of the chamber for this festival .It is such a brilliant idea," he said.

"It is feeding of the energy in this chamber of commerce and bringing together the local business community."

Other guests on the panel included Stephen Phipson, Director General of MAKE UK, Josh Hardie, Deputy Director General of the Confederation of British Industry and Mike Cherry, national chairman of the Federation of Small Businesses

Also yesterday Walsall College officially launched its new Digital Engineering Skills Centre.

Speaking at the opening Stewart Towe, chairman of the Black Country Local Enterprise Partnership said that specialist digital skills were the main criteria for driving local industrial strategy.


Thomas Dudley in Dudley hosted an Inspiring the Workforce of the Future event and RP Technologies in Kingswinford hosted a factory tour.

Among 17 events taking place today the Federation of Small Businesses West Midlands is holding a round table to meet the Bank of England at Walsall Council House from 11am to 1pm. Companies have been invited to talk to the bank's Deputy Agent for the West Midlands Glynn Jones about its financial stability work and how this impacts on small businesses.

Attendance across the festival is now expe4cted to top 5,500 – more than 20 per cent up on last year.

The second Black Country Business Festival runs to May 24 and there is still time to book tickets for the mainly free events at


More than 100 Black Country female business leaders will gather on Friday morning at The Mount Hotel, Wolverhampton, for the launch of the Black Country Women in Leadership, an initiative set up by the Black Country Chamber of Commerce on International Women’s Day earlier this year.

It has been set up to highlight the achievements of women in leadership across the region, to promote them as role models for the next generation and to support and inspire females in business aiming for future leadership roles.

The forum will also work to highlight the continuing gender pay gap, lobby for more flexible working practices and aim to promote diversity across the region.

Julie Cunningham, first woman chairman of the Black Country Chamber of Commerce in its 160-year history, said: “We want to focus our energy on promoting the amazing women leaders we have in the Black Country region, encourage them to come forward as spokespeople, inspire the future generation and raise awareness of the obstacles we still incur."

John Corser

By John Corser
Business Reporter - @JohnCorser_Star

Express & Star Business Editor at head office, Wolverhampton. Welcomes all news of companies and business organisations.


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