SUPPORTING SPELTHORNE BUSINESSES: Kwasi Kwarteng, seen here in London on July 14, held a business competition in Spelthorne on the same day. (Leon Neal/Getty Images).
On July 14, I was delighted to host the final of the Spelthorne Business Plan Competition, in conjunction with Spelthorne Borough Council (writes the MP for Kwasi Kwarteng).
I created the competition in 2013 to identify and support budding entrepreneurs in Spelthorne, Surrey, and the annual competition has backed some great winners.
This year’s five finalists pitched their business plans to a panel of experts at BP’s head office in Sunbury on Thames.
The judges evaluated the projects according to several criteria, including the commercial potential, the innovative character and the technical feasibility of the ideas, as well as the economic viability and the sustainability of the company.
The five finalists were of a very high standard, but the big winner was Julie Sebastiano for The Village Pottery and Craft Center in Shepperton.
Julie received £3,500 in funding, mentorship support and free website and logo design for her winning pitch.
The second prize of £1,000 went to Holly Hobbs for her business, Aspiring Apprentice, which helps young people get their dream apprenticeship.
Third prize of £200 was awarded to therapist Tracy Tomkins.
I was very impressed with all of the finalists and I wish everyone the best in developing their businesses.
I was also delighted to join the community breakfast at St Hilda’s Church in Ashford in July. I really enjoyed the hearty cooked breakfast, the friendly conversation and the opportunity to share my experiences with the parish.
Finally, I welcome the return of amateur regattas to Spelthorne this summer, especially after two years of disruption due to the pandemic.
The regattas are a fantastic celebration of local sport and community life, with a long history in the borough, and I hope many of you will take part in them this year.