February Newsletter




A busy month for all business as we gear up after the Christmas break. For some, particularly in retail, this means a bit of a lull in sales and a chance to reset while for others returning from holiday it is like turning on a tap – a rush of enquires, orders and interest. Whatever, your business, if you have any pressing concerns, commercial issues, any matters on which we can advise, support or just help point you in the right direction – then get in contact (chair@waylandchamber.co.uk) – we are here to help.

In our Newsletter this month – a high profile visitor, an introduction to a new Committee Member, some details of our 2022 Programme of Events and local and statutory Plans and what they mean for you; and the 40th edition of the Chamber Directory of Services in the making!



The High Sheriff, Michael Gurney visited Watton Tuesday 25th January to meet with David Dent, the Mayor and Deputy Mayor, and representatives of community groups and staff at the Wayland Academy. Pictured here, David (on the right) talks to The High Sheriff about the Town’s Neighbourhood Plan (David Chairs the Steering Group on behalf of the Council), the needs for the High Street and our retailers, and the Chambers strategy for growing business and new opportunities in Wayland. The High Sheriff was particularly interested in the business and community opportunities that will be delivered through the proposed Digital and Creative Media Centre, especially those for young people. He offered his encouragement and services in helping to promote and engage with our partners over the coming months.


We are delighted to announce and welcome our newest member Tony Cane to the Chamber Management Committee. Tony brings a wealth of business experience and knowhow to the Committee from his career in exports, sales and property management.

In 1986, after a successful role as an Export manager in the Middle and Far East, Tony started a Commercial Sealants distribution Business in Essex with just £100.00 ( thats all he had). His first order was £6.45. He never cashed the cheque retaining to this Day. Over the next 30 years the business became the largest distributor of Silicone sealant and self adhesive lead strip in Southern England. Tony’s success has been featured as a Case History “rag to riches story” on National Television and National Radio. During the period there was parallel expansion into Commercial and Domestic property investment, along with the purchase of a Country House restaurant in East Sussex.

Tony brings to the chamber a wealth of experience and knowledge in most aspects of running a successful Business. His strengths lie in spotting and acting upon opportunity and negotiation. He has been involved in doing business in the jungles of Borneo (land of the head hunters), to the deserts of Arabia and even a Cafe on the shore of Southend sea front. Vastly different locations and different needs. Understanding those needs, Tony believes is what acts as the foundation to any aspiring successful Business. He is here to help you get there.


We have an exciting programme lined up for you this year: including visiting speakers, social events, workshops while continuing to publish our much cherished annual Directory of Services, monthly email newsletters to keep you informed of important commercial developments within the community. in addition we on the Committee are always working behind the scenes representing Wayland business interests and lobbying on your behalf at local, district, county and national government levels.

High Profile Speakers
A key date for your diary is Thursday 31st March for our first speaker in this years series: Ashley Cane who is coming to talk to us about establishing and delivering sales on-line. Ashley is Managing Director of Digiflex Ltd – one of Amazon’s most successful online Sellers. Digiflex achieve substantial Worldwide sales and were listed in the Sunday Times annual export awards for medium size businesses. One of those ‘must be there’ opportunities and we look forward to seeing you. Reservations will be taken nearer the event which will be held at Broom Hall Country Hotel, on Richmond Road but you can let us know now if you would like to reserve a place – email chair@waylandchamber.co.uk.

Social event – free drinks
Our next social event, a gathering with free drinks for members will be held in the Kings Arms, Middle Street, Watton on Wednesday 23rd February at 6pm with another on 27th April. Put the dates in your diary – we will be pleased to see you there. Meet the Committee and other members of the Chamber to chat about your business, to hear all about new developments and activities, and build your local networks.


Watton Neighbourhood and Breckland Town Delivery Plans

Two plans, two opportunities to have your say – the first – the Neighbourhood Plan a statutory document and the second a guide to future opportunities in Watton.

The Watton Neighbourhood Plan (NP) goes out to consultation in the 3rd week of February. The NP, is a statutory level document carrying significant authority and is a crucially important strategic document for the Town; it addresses the needs, opportunities, policies and community actions to achieve and meet the Town’s immediate and future priorities.

Your Chamber has been fully engaged in representing business and commercial interests in the the development of the plan. Concerned with maintaining footfall on the High Street we in the Chamber argued for policies and actions that can help rejuvenate the High Street, encourage new traders, including parking and traffic flow. Our flagship initiative to generate new businesses through providing centrally located serviced offices and business incubator within the new Digital and Creative Media Centre at Wayland House. A new facility that will encourage and support start-up and established digital/creative business; as well was providing training and community digital gaming facilities – all integrated with a modern state of the art library and Wayland Partnership facilities.

The Neighbourhood Plan consultation starts the week of 14th February and there will be a formal vote to adopt or reject the final version of the plan, following consultation later in the year. You will be able to access the plan online at the Chamber and the Watton Town Council Website. If you have any thoughts or queries from a business and economic perspective please get in contact chair@waylandchamber.co.uk.

The draft Town Delivery Plan, can be found at: https://www.breckland.gov.uk/media/19649/Watton-Town-Delivery-Plan/pdf/Draft_for_Publishing_-_Watton_Town_Delivery_Plan_v3.pdf?m=637783582833270000


The 40th edition of the Chamber Information, Trade and Services Directory first published in 1982 is currently in preparation. If you know of a business and colleagues who will benefit from a listing or advertisement in the Directory tell them to contact us (chair@waylandchamber.co.uk). The Directory goes to over 7,500 Wayland households and businesses and is used throughout the year – a great way to advertise your services for as little as £45.00 – a real bargain for all year round promotion!


You can find us on a variety of social media platforms – please follow us, tag us and share our stories!

You can find us:
On Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/waylandchamberuk/
On Twitter – https://twitter.com/WaylandChamber
On Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/WaylandChamberNorfolk/


We want to keep the new website up to date with the very latest news and information that will be relevant to visitors and of use to the local community, so if you have a news story, or maybe want to share information about how your business has been coping in lockdown, then please send your information to us with any relevant images and we will add this to our website and promote through our social media.


We hope that you have found this newsletter informative. Please get in touch if you have any ideas for future articles or if you would like us to feature some news about your business. We always welcome any suggestions from members about how we can improve what the Chamber does – so please get in touch!






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