This week I want to put the spotlight on the thriving enterprise culture that we have here in Woking. 

We are fortunate to host the offices of organisations with an international reach such as Petrofac, WWF, Asahi and McLaren, but equally important are the fantastic local businesses and social enterprises that serve and support local communities across our borough. 

Last week it was great to attend the Woking Means Business event, organised by Woking Chamber of Commerce and supported by Woking Borough Council.

I spoke with a huge number of businesses from across our local area, with important local charities and with local firms that provide vital business premises such as the Lansbury Estate in Knaphill. 

The economic development team at the council have done an immense amount of work over the years helping to organise events across Woking which, in turn, support the local economy and our local firms. 

At the Woking Car Show recently, I was joined by huge numbers of residents and the event saw footfall increase by more than 10,000 in our town centre compared with the same time last year.

With financial challenges facing the local authority, the car show was also sponsored, thereby significantly reducing any direct council expenditure on the event.

Previous years have seen the Woking Food Festival fill Jubilee Square and other seasonal events bring many families to our town centre, so I do hope further business sponsorship can be secured for such events in the future.

A vibrant and successful town needs strong economic growth to provide jobs, prosperity and sustainable development. 

Woking is, and can continue to be, a destination location for investment and for business. 

It’s important councillors don’t talk Woking down; despite the council’s current difficulties, Woking remains an excellent place to base and grow a business.

Our larger villages also offer much to local businesses. We have thriving high streets in Horsell, Knaphill, Byfleet and in many of our other villages and communities and it’s amazing how many other successful enterprises are tucked away across our borough.

Take, for example, V4 Wood Flooring, on the outskirts of Horsell. Founded in 2002, this family-run business is one of the UK’s leading suppliers of high-quality and responsibly-sourced hardwood flooring and its dedicated team have doubled sales over the past ten years and have exciting expansion plans for the future.

Or take Invotra, based in Dukes Court in the town centre, who, since 2012, have been delivering outstanding intranets for tens of thousands of users and large membership organisations in the UK, the United States and across the world. 

They also have an award-winning apprenticeship scheme, including several local apprentices who have grown with the firm and who now occupy very senior management positions within the company.

So Woking not only hosts businesses of an international scale and reputation but also smaller enterprises who are now leading businesses in their field and, who knows, which might become the leading global businesses of the future.