Woking Business

The work of a Woking-based charity that provides small businesses with loans has been recognised with a European microcredit award for its good practices.

The Fredericks Foundation, which received a European Code of Good Conduct for Microcredit Provision earlier this month, provides small business loans to people excluded from mainstream credit.

The microfinance charity, founded in 2001 by Paul Barry-Walsh, a successful IT entrepreneur, says its loans aim is to give individuals the opportunity to transform their lives with dignity – rather than through hand outs.

The European Code of Good Conduct for Microcredit Provision (ECoGC) provides a set of standards in terms of management, governance, risk management, reporting, and consumer and investor relations that are common. These standards are for the benefit of customers, investors, funders, owners, regulators and partner organisations.

It made the award following an extensive audit and review process where every aspect of the Foundation was tested, Fredericks scored highly and received the award on 4 February 2019.

Duncan Parker, CEO of Fredericks, said ‘We are thrilled to have received this affirmation from the European Microfinance organisation. We strive to provide a great service for our beneficiaries and donors and this will give them much confidence in us as the relationship is one built on trust and integrity. I’m delighted for my team at Fredericks as it’s a huge ‘well done’ recognising both their professionalism and especially their passion, commitment and hard work.’

Fredericks Foundation, a member of Woking Chamber of Commerce, has helped create over 1,600 companies and has granted loans of over £5 million. For more information visit www.fredericksfoundation.org

Chobham Business Club Members were delighted to host the Mayor of Woking Cllr Will Forster, 45th Mayor of Woking, at a business lunch on Friday 15th February at the Rosso Mazaro Italian Restaurant in Chobham attended by 22 members.

HELPING THE HOMELESS – Chobham Business Club Members Craig Bourne, Tricia Matthews, Vivian Woodruff and Richard Whittington present a cheque to Mayor of Woking Cllr Will Forster with owner Diego and Ciro from Rosso Mazara. Picture by Marilyn Taylor

The food was excellent and everyone enjoyed their lunch consisting of a variety of different food. The Mayor of Woking gave a speech regarding his chosen charity for his Mayoral year which is to support Woking’s local homeless charity, the York Road Project, which provides emergency lodging and longer term accommodation and ongoing support to help those experiencing homelessness get back on their feet.

Will explains: “My grandmother used to support this excellent charity and as a result I have grown up in Woking and supporting it too. I was surprised to hear that it has never been the Mayor’s charity before and so I am hoping that I can help raise funds for this very deserving cause, as well as raise awareness on how the people of Woking can best help people who have fallen on hard times.”

Craig Bourne Chairman and Tricia Matthews President of Chobham Business Club were delighted to hand over a cheque to the Mayor in the sum of £250.00, some of this money was raised in a raffle on the day.

V4 WOOD Flooring is gearing up for a period of sustained expansion as its £3 million design centre in Woking nears completion.

The business plans to open a showroom in Clerkenwell, which is renowned for being the home of trendy design centres, followed by a centre in the North of England, with Manchester an option under consideration.

“The Woking design centre will be the hub of the operations, but it is important that V4 has a visible presence in key locations including London and the North and this will be our focus going forward, together with introducing designs and products that ensure we remain at the forefront of the flooring sector,” said managing director Chris Vincent.

TARGETS – V4 Wood Flooring managing director Chris Vincent

The new centres will support the dealer network with a wider range of large samples for customers to view and product training facilities, including the fitting of the various floor and wall products.

“Despite the Brexit effect, we have had a very positive start to the year and have the confidence to progress with exciting plans for the future of the business,” he added.

Investment is being made to upgrade the ordering process for its network of retailers, offering 24-hour online ordering with instant access to stock levels and new products are planned for launch during 2019.

Based in Woking, the family-run business has four warehouses that amount to 35,000 sq. ft and employs 40 members of staff.

The innovative new design centre will allow the company to showcase its luxury flooring products and wall panels to customers, architects, specifiers and designers in settings that demonstrate how the products can give homes the wow-factor.

Recently, V4 Wood Flooring managing director Chris Vincent was named as one of the country’s top business leaders in a prominent report.  LDC named Chris as ‘One to Watch’ in this year’s Top 50 Most Ambitious Business Leaders programme, supported by The Telegraph.

The company, which currently has a turn over circa £12million, is targeting growth to £20million over the next three years.

A LOCAL company has won two categories in the British Pool & Hot Tub Awards, including winning  Outstanding Pool of the Year.

Falcon Pools, based near Woodham, won Bronze in the Residential Indoor Pools £75,000 to under £125,000 category and Gold in the Residential Indoor Pools £125,000 to under £150,000 category.

Ian Storr of Falcon Pools said: “We are delighted to be recognised with such accolades, taking home a Gold and a Bronze award and being award the overall winner of the Outstanding Pool of the Year Award.

“For over 40 years Falcon Pools have become synonymous with building bespoke designed swimming pools to the highest standards with an unsurpassed level of care and attention. These awards will be greatly received by our dedicated team at Falcon Pools, celebrating our companies exceptional work in the wet leisure industry”.

The award ceremony was held during SPATEX, the UK’s largest dedicated pool, spa and wellness show at the Ricoh Arena, Coventry. The awards were presented by Wasps rugby player Charlie Matthews.

Ewbank’s, Surrey’s leading auction house, is preparing for a two-day entertainment sale, with memorabilia and movie props going under the hammer on February 28, and vintage posters on March 1.

RESISTANCE IS FUTILE: A production-used static phaser rifle, from the 1996 film Star Trek First Contact, has been valued at between £2,000 and £4,000

Music fans will be delighted by the opportunity to snap up a Clearaudio Innovation TT-3 turntable, which carries a pre-sale guide price of between £1,000 and £1,500. This is part of a large consignment of high-end audio equipment that includes Wilson Audio Sasha Series II speakers, and Bang & Olufsen Beolab speakers amongst others.

An original prop mask designed and used in Pink Floyd’s 1982 musical film, The Wall, is going under the hammer with an estimate of between £800 and £1,200. It has been consigned for sale by Oxfam, and all proceeds will go to the charity. The mask has been signed by British illustrator Gerald Scarfe CBE, for Oxfam. Scarfe worked with Pink Floyd on their album The Wall, the ensuing film, as well as the video for Welcome To The Machine.  

Another lot bearing famous signatures is a hardback copy, with dustjacket, of Harry Potter and The Philosopher’s Stone. The book is signed to the inside by Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter), Emma Watson (Hermione Granger), Rupert Grint (Ron Weasley) and Jamie Waylett (Vincent Crabbe). The vendor worked as a transport driver on numerous films, including Harry Potter. The book has been valued at between £400 and £600.

Another movie prop sure to garner buyers’ attention is a production-used static phaser rifle, used in the 1996 film Star Trek: First Contact. It has been valued at between £2,000 and £4,000, and comes with a copy of original invoice from Profiles In History. It was one of three versions, constructed of painted wood with decals and arm strap, and measures 36 inches long.

COME OUT TO PLAY: The brown, synthetic leather waistcoat
worn by Michael Beck’s “Swan” in the 1979 film The Warriors

A brown synthetic leather waistcoat as worn by Michael Beck, star of the 1979 film The Warriors, has a guide price of between £5,000 and £8,000. The garment was worn throughout this landmark film, has black patterned piping with button front closure and handwritten in black ink near the internal label is ‘Swan’. The iconic vest features embroidered ‘Warriors’ title and insignia patches on the back. This is one of very few vests known to have survived production.

A crew gift statue from 2001 film Lara Croft: Tomb Raider is on sale, with an estimate of between £400 and £600. This metal ape-like humanoid statue was given to heads of department who worked on the film, it has been consigned by the family of Peter Wallace, who worked in the art department.

It stands on wooden engraved base, and is 16 inches high. Also included are two copies of unit lists showing Peter Wallace as ‘H.O.D. Rigger’, two premiere tickets for Leicester Square and a construction pass.

Among the many vintage posters on sale on March 1, is a poster advertising the 1966 film Carry On Screaming, starring Kenneth Williams and Harry Corbett, valued at between £300 and £500. The poster features artwork by noted poster artist Tom Chantrell.

Also on offer is a US half-sheet poster from 1969 film Bullitt, starring Steve McQueen, carries a pre-sale guide of between £200 and £400.

If you would like an auction assessment please contact the team at Ewbank’s. Ewbank’s is open Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm at the Burnt Common saleroom in Send just off the A3.

–          Ewbank’s: 01483 223101 or email valuations@ewbankauctions.co.uk.

–          Live internet bidding is available through  www.ewbankauctions.co.uk and www.theauctionroom.com

A SURVEYING firm based in Woking is looking for new staff in a job that offers the opportunity to travel and explore the country.

Macleod Simmonds, whose Surrey office is in the Boundary Business Centre in the town centre is looking to expand its team and has a selection of roles available from trainee to Qualified Surveyor.

Jon Bottomley says: “Working as a surveyor will give you the opportunity to travel all over the country and spend lots of time outside.”

The firm, whose head office is in Chichester, is involved in some of the most exciting  engineering projects in the country and has pioneered sub-surface radar technologies as well as more traditional and drone methods.

The projects it is working on include the East-West super cycle highway in London and developments in the City of London in areas of high archaeological significance.

The firm was awarded the prestigious Most Innovative Highway Authority Award at the 2018 Highways Awards for its work at Aldgate Square in London, with the judges praising “very positive outcomes achieved from the highways project that has shown excellent practice and new ways of working.”

Matt Cook, a utility mapping surveyor, joined Macleod Simmonds two years ago as a trainee and now helps to train new recruits alongside travelling around the country to work on some of the highest profile construction projects in the UK.

“The technology available at Macleod Simmonds is some of the best in the industry,” Matt said. “My favourite is the new Stream-C we use; it looks like a stealth bomber!’

Jon Bottomley, a senior surveyor, joined the team in June last year with 13 years’ experience in the industry.

“Working as a surveyor will give you the opportunity to travel all over the country and spend lots of time outside,” Jon said.

“One of the things that initially attracted me to work as a surveyor was the mix of office-based computer work and work out on site. A surveying career offers a nice amount of variety,” he added.

FOR more information visit www.macleodsimmonds.com/surveying-careers or call 0330 6781115.

A WOKING psychotherapist is using the countryside around the town for outdoor “walking and talking” counselling sessions, which brings multiple benefits.

Be Cortade discovered the benefits of outdoor therapy when she found that walking along the El Camino de Santiago (the Way of St. James) in France and Spain cured her of longterm depression a few years ago.

Be researched walking therapy and also trained as a psychotherapist.

“I discovered that the combination of talking, walking and being in nature was more beneficial than the sum of those things,” she said.

OUTDOOR THERAPY – Be Cortade uses commons around Woking and the canal towpath

Be said that one of the many advantages of walking therapy was that it removed the problem of having to face someone and talk about difficult issues.

“Eye contact can be difficult for some people in these circumstances, but here we are walking side by side.”

Walking has particular benefits as it “activates specific neurons that makes thinking more lateral and allows for more creative solutions to problems.”

Be has found a route at Newlands Corner, near Guildford, that is ideal as the walk takes about an hour and includes woodland and open spaces.

She also uses commons around Woking and the Basingstoke canal towpath.

“I have to negotiate with clients about how we will approach things because the issue of confidentiality is different when you are not in a room.

“For instance, if we encounter other people, should we stop talking or engage in general conversation?”

Be, who lives in Old Woking with husband Guillaume and has three teenage sons, is a member of the National Trust and has permission to use NT properties for walking therapy. Many of these have few visitors during week days.

Be was born in France and left in her early 20s. She has been living in Woking for eight years after spells in the US and Australia.

Be is incredibly busy, also teaching French and English and translation work, as well as several volunteer commitments.

These include working at The Cosy, the café attached to The Lighthouse in the town centre, and doing voluntary counselling at a women’s support centre in Woking and a young people’s service in Croydon.

She said her husband was very supportive, especially while she trained as a psychotherapist having worked as an account director in the design and branding industry.

Be said that the walking therapy sessions began with an assessment, often over the phone, so that she could adapt the outings according to the clients’ ability to walk.

There are discounts for the first sessions and block bookings. FOR more information, email bluecloud@cortade.net or call 07553 826 017.

FOUR trainees are celebrating achieving chartered status thanks to support from Vail Williams.

Eren Boyraz, Tom Horton, Hugo Langlois and Jamie Mayland recently completed the assessment of professional competence (APC), with Vail Williams achieving a 100% pass rate.

CONGRATULATIONS – Three of the Vail Williams APC successes are Eren Boyraz, Hugo Langlois and Jamie Mayland

The property advice company, which has a branch in Woking, paid to put the four through their training. Colleagues in the firm, many of whom are former APC assessors, supported and guided them during a two-year scheme.

To complete the APC, the trainees took part in a three-day course, internal mock interviews, submitted of a portfolio of evidence, undertook practical experience and were interviewed by a RICS panel.

Vail Williams managing partner Matthew Samuel-Camps said: “On behalf of everyone at Vail Williams I would like to congratulate Eren, Tom, Hugo and Jamie on this achievement. We’re immensely proud of the hard work and dedication shown by all four and we’re thrilled to have been able to support them.

THE Woking branch of a storage and business facilities company is offering free space for donations to a children’s hospice and free delivery of Christmas gifts.

Titan Storage Solutions is providing up to 300 sqft of storage space for direct donations or overflow items that the charity cannot store.

Donations intended for Christmas should be made before next Friday (14 December).

A Titan spokesman said: “We noticed Shooting Star Chase was collecting donations so we wanted to help to brighten up the children’s Christmas by helping the charity get as many donations as possible over the Christmas period.

“We realised that if they were to have a high number of donations they would need somewhere to store their items – and rather than paying for this the charity were delighted we could help by providing free storage and a free drop-off service.

GENEROUS – Titan Storage Solutions’ Woking branch opened in February last year

“After this Christmas appeal we have offered to assist with any storage needs that the charity has on an on-going basis so we can continue to support them.”

Titan staff have been in Woking town centre this week promoting the charity collection.

New clothing, bedding and toys can be posted or delivered to Titan Storage Solutions on Orchard Business Park, Forsyth Road, Woking GU21 5RZ, or delivered directly to Shooting Star Chase.

The Woking branch of Titan opened in February last year and is the latest facility for the company, which has five other stores  in the southeast, Essex and the Midlands and plans to open two more next year.

As well as storage, Titan offers office space, meeting rooms and parking and mail and delivery acceptance services for businesses and individuals.

FOR more information on the charity, visit www.shootingstarchase.org.uk

THE Woking town centre Christmas tree has been installed after being donated by the Woking Asian Business Forum.

This is the 11th year that the WABF has presented a tree to the residents of Woking.

The 34-ft tree was put in place in time for the panto-themed Big Christmas Lights Switch-On in Jubilee Square.

It was presented to the High Sheriff of Surrey, Jim Glover, by WABF chairman Shahid Azeem, who said: “The Woking Asian Business Forum is delighted to once again sponsor Woking town centre’s fabulous Christmas Tree.

“The festive season is always a time for friends and family to come together and a tree is always the focal point of these celebrations.

Mohammed Zubair of the Woking Asian Business Forum presents the town centre Christmas tree to Jim Glover, the High Sheriff of Surrey, with Woking Borough Council neighbourhood manager, Andy Calfe, second left, and members of the WABF, from left, Sarmad Nasir, Sangeeta Patel and Shahid Azeem

“We live in a most multicultural society with great relations and it is vital that we celebrate our community.”

Mr Glover said: “It is always a delightful time of year when Christmas Trees appear in town centres across Surrey.

“The continued support of the Woking Asian Business Forum reflects the strong community spirit that is enjoyed in Woking, and a reminder that no matter what race or religion you are, Christmas is a time for giving and being thankful.”

The tree will stay in place until early January when it will be taken down and recycled via a large wood-chipping machine.

FOR more information about events across Woking borough during the festive season, visit www.celebratewoking.info