It is hoped the deal will see the delivery of more than 20 projects to help create up to 20,000 new and better jobs alongside an increase in productivity levels, as well as having a positive impact on the most deprived communities, delivering a balanced spread of benefits across the region.Speaking on behalf of the Belfast Region City Deal partners, Belfast Lord Mayor Councillor Deirdre Hargey said: I am absolutely delighted to sign the heads of terms for the Belfast City Deal. The signing of a Heads of Terms for the Belfast Region City Deal is a significant milestone in our journey towards substantial investment in inclusive regional regeneration. Communities Secretary, Rt Hon James Brokenshire MP, said: This is an investment which will improve quality of life for people living here and further enhance our attractiveness as a destination of choice for investors, visitors, new residents and students alike. I am also engaging closely with the Chancellor to secure a financial announcement for the Derry-Londonderry Region City Deal and help unlock the huge potential that Derry-Londonderry has to offer. The UK Government is committed to developing a comprehensive and ambitious set of City Deals across Northern Ireland and delivering a stronger economy that works for everyone. It’s testament to the power of collaboration and partnership and we look forward to progressing plans with our wide range of partners, including our colleagues working to deliver a programme of investment for Derry-Londonderry and the North West region. Antrim & Newtownabbey Ards & North Down Belfast Lisburn and Castlereagh Newry, Mourne & Down Mid & East Antrim The UK Government has committed £350 million of funding to support and encourage economic development across the region, creating jobs and boosting prosperity. This is tremendous news for the communities and businesses living and operating in the Belfast City region. Innovation and digital – creating global centres of innovation excellence in partnership with enhanced digital capability and connectivity; Infrastructure – including Phase 2 of the Belfast Rapid Transit scheme; Tourism and regeneration – delivering a series of internationally visible tourism products and the transformation of key towns across the region; and*Employability and skills – facilitating a strong, complementary employability and skills package to deliver the right skills base to support the growth and opportunities created by this Belfast Region City Deal investment. The ambitious programme will help grow the region’s business strengths in life and health sciences; ICT, digital and creative industries, and advanced manufacturing. It will also support digital development and tourism-led regeneration across the entire region, underpinned by infrastructure developments and investment in skills to connect people to jobs and services.For more information on the proposed programme of investment, click here. You can also follow #BRcitydeal on Twitter.ENDSNOTES TO EDITORS:Click Head of Terms Document with Signatures (PDF, 1.02MB, 10 pages) for the full Heads of Terms document which sets out further details of the projects being proposed. All projects will be subject to the approval of final business cases.Belfast Region City Deal incorporates six of the 11 councils in Northern Ireland: This transformative deal will bolster innovation, productivity and prosperity across the region, and I am delighted to see the hard work which has gone into this deal come to fruition. Alongside Queen’s University and Ulster University, and Regional Further Education colleges, including Belfast Met, Northern Regional College, South Eastern Regional College and the Southern Regional College, it provides a truly collaborative approach to this multi-million pound investment programme and helping to drive economic development across the region, boosting jobs, creating opportunity and encouraging further inward investment.Some of the 22 proposed projects include: The Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, the Rt Hon Karen Bradley MP, has signed the Heads of Terms for the Belfast City Deal, alongside the Belfast City Regional Deal partners and the Northern Ireland Civil Service.This is a major milestone towards the completion of the first City Deal for Northern Ireland. The Belfast Region City Deal will see the UK Government invest £350 million into the Belfast Region over the next 15 years. It is proposed that this figure will be matched by the Northern Ireland Executive once the devolved institutions are restored.The City Deal will be further bolstered by co-investment of upwards of £150m from Belfast Region City Deal partners and investment by the private sector is anticipated to bring the total investment package to over £1 billion.The Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, the Rt Hon Karen Bradley MP said:
The appointment was made, with the agreement of the Prime Minister.Sherry Coutu has a deep understanding of the digital sector having been a serial entrepreneur, investor and non exec director of companies, charities and universities for 25 years. She chairs Founders4Schools, Workfinder, The Scaleup Institute and Raspberry Pi Trading Ltd.Sherry also serves as a non-executive member of The Royal Society, (Science, Industry & Committee), Cambridge University (Finance Board) and the London Stock Exchange plc. She has invested in more than 60 companies as an angel investor, including Linkedin, Zoopla, Lovefilm, New Energy Finance, as well as five venture capital firms.Digital Secretary Jeremy Wright said: As a philanthropist, she supports the Prince’s Trust, the Crick Institute and Founders4Schools.Sherry has an MBA from Harvard, an MSc (with distinction) from the London School of Economics and a BA (Hons with distinction) from the University of British Columbia, Canada.She was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) for services to entrepreneurship in the 2013 New Year’s Honours List and she has been awarded honorary PhDs from The University of Bristol, Manchester University and the Open University for her work in education and economy. Sherry Coutu said: I’m delighted to welcome Sherry as a Non-Executive Board Member to the DCMS Departmental Board. Sherry brings a wealth of experience that will be incredibly valuable to DCMS, particularly in our ambition to bring the worlds of digital innovation and creativity together to help drive our future economy. I hope to bring the experience gained from my work in academia, the tech industry and the third sector to encourage our young people to develop the skills and experiences that allow them to take on the jobs of the future, and support the work being done by the DCMS in this area. I am thrilled to have been asked to contribute to the work of DCMS. The digital and creative industries are significant growth enablers for the competitive advantage of the UK at this important time in our history.
We have worked hard to improve our performance on the Basic Payment Scheme, and this year just a small number of farmers will be receiving bridging payments. We are also committed to driving up performance on the CS and ES schemes since taking those on in October last year. Our focus remains on processing the remaining claims and paying farmers as quickly as possible. I would like to thank all those involved for their continued efforts on this. A bridging payment is an interest-free loan to customers ahead of their full payment, providing them with 75% of the current estimated value of their claim. Once the full payment has been processed and made, the amount already issued through a bridging payment will be held back.This year the RPA has so far issued 98% of CS 2019 Mid Tier agreements and 95% of CS 2019 Higher Tier agreements. Farmers and land managers are reminded to sign and return these agreements, and to submit their BPS 2019 applications as early as possible. The claim window for BPS, CS and ES schemes closes on 15 May 2019. The Rural Payments Agency (RPA) has confirmed today that farmers will start receiving bridging payments from Friday 12 April. This will cover Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) 2018 claims and Countryside Stewardship (CS) 2018 advance payments.While more than 99% of BPS 2018 claims have now been processed, a significant improvement on previous years, today’s announcement means that remaining eligible claimants will receive a payment for 75% of the estimated value of their claim. This will help with farm business cash flow while the remaining amount on their claim is processed.Bridging payments will also cover unpaid 2018 Countryside Stewardship advance payments. More than 95% of these payments have been made to farmers who are delivering important environmental work.The RPA has written directly to farmers to provide an update on bridging payments and on how these payments will be calculated. All eligible BPS claimants and CS 2018 advance claimants will start receiving bridging payments from 12 April.RPA Chief Executive Paul Caldwell said:
The husband and wife team behind newly opened La Roche in Tunbridge Wells has told British Baker they will launch a patisserie school in France.The boutique bakery and patisserie located on London Road, which was opened four months ago by former Baking Industry Awards (BIA) winners Chris and Harpal Pollard, will offer customers the opportunity to learn patisserie skills at their chateau located in the Loire Valley in France.Chris told British Baker: “The idea is to make the chateau into a fun holiday destination where people can come and do some short courses in patisserie in a nice enivonrment for a week or so. The bakery in Tunbridge Wells could become a platform and the customer can see the product first-hand. They can then learn how to make them over in France – what nicer environment to be in?”La Roche produces a range of products on-site, including Danish pastries, filled ciabatta rolls, patisserie lines, cupcakes, and up to 20 types of artisanal breads.Chris, whose uncle and father were both master bakers, has worked in the industry for more than 20 years and won British Baker’s BIA Baker of the Year title in 2002, while patissier Harpal trained at the Ecole Lenôtre in Paris, as well as Le Cordon Bleu culinary institute. The couple previously ran London bakery Le Papillon Patisserie.La Roche currently employs four members of staff and has taken on a few students for work experience to learn both bakery and patisserie skills. Products are made in a bakery located in the basement, as well as patisserie laboratory on the second floor.YouTube link: http://youtu.be/ANnYrkTiqqI
Dunfermline-based Stephens the Bakers has appointed Ewen Chisholm as its new sales director.The bakery, which took the title of Scottish Baker of the Year at the Scottish Bakers’ awards and conference in May, said Chisholm joined the business on 17 June, and will be responsible for all sales channels within the company.Chisholm has a convenience retailing background, and has experience in areas including: wholesale, business development and improvement, market research, store and warehouse operations, supplier relationship management and brand development.He has had previous posts at C J Lang and Son, him!, David Sands and The Co-operative Food.
Chris Ormrod, managing director of Ministry of Cake, reflects on how his business literally “sells happiness”. It strikes me sometimes that I don’t just sell cake – I sell a little piece of happiness that is wedge-shaped and, more often than not, chocolate.Of all the cakes we sell at Ministry of Cake – and we sell almost 3 million slices a week – nine out of 10 slices are chocolate fudge cake, and the other one is inevitably a chocolate cheesecake of some description.I suspect this would come as no surprise to the Aztec shaman who first figured out how to make the heavenly flavour in the first place. I’m sure he’d be a big fan of my Alabama fudge cake with brownies on top – even if the concept of adding cream, ice cream or custard alongside might confuse him a tad.How to keep chocolate freshSo, the interesting challenge for us is how to keep evolving the chocolate fudge cake – how to keep it interesting, exciting and appealing to people as they decide which treat to have with so many other options abound.The chocolate cake used to be so simple. A sponge, split and iced, masked with icing and decoratively swirled on top – if an exotic touch were needed it probably came with a few chocolate drops sprinkled on top. Not any more; now we add layers of caramel, top with brownies, melt in some Belgian chocolate chips and then, in case that’s not chocolatey enough, we dust with cocoa powder to give the final product an intense chocolate aroma.That’s why, when I see people eating our cakes, I often see them smile and share spoonfuls with their fellow diners – and I know that, if nothing else, I’ve just made the world a slightly happier place…
Marks & Spencer has seen food sales rise in its first quarter, while it remains on track to open 90 new Simply Food stores this year.The food business saw like-for-like sales up 0.3% and total sales up 3.2% for the 13 weeks to 27 June 2015.The company praised the launch of 700 new lines, including the new Taste of the British Isles range, which has boosted trade for a number of independent bakery companies.It also remains confident that it will open 90 Simply Food convenience stores this year, and has seen good performance in stores opened to date.Marc Bolland, chief executive, said: “We continue to make progress against our key priorities. Our Food business did very well in a difficult market. In General Merchandise, sales were broadly level on last year and we are on track to deliver the planned increase in gross margin. M&S.com performance was very strong, with customers appreciating all the improvements to our website.”Half-year results for the company will be announced on 4 November 2015.
TV legend Claudia Winkleman has been confirmed to present this year’s Baking Industry Awards (BIA).Now in its 28th year, the Studio 54-themed awards ceremony will be hosted by Winkleman, known for her presenting roles on Strictly Come Dancing and The Great British Sewing Bee.Winkleman is no stranger to bakery, having appeared on celebrity Bake-Off in 2013. Despite her efforts, she decided she would stick to presenting… and will be getting her dancing shoes to join the bakers at the disco ball-studded event. The long-respected awards will take place on Wednesday 9 September, at the Park Lane Hilton in London.Guests can enjoy a night of networking and entertainment as the 2015 winners are announced. To book your tickets today, call Elizabeth Ellis on 01293 846593 or email [email protected] Baking Industry Awards were launched in 1987 and, with up to 800 key industry executives attending the event every year, they have grown to be the most prestigious event in the baking industry calendar.The awards recognise achievement and professionalism across the baking industry, rewarding those companies and individuals who drive the industry forward.
A new bakery and pastry report from Catalyst Corporate Finance has found that the fastest-growing brands specialise in healthier baked goods using high-quality ingredients.It is these brands, the report said, that meet demand for innovation in the free-from and food on-the-go categories. It said: “Large corporations are changing their products to match these trends, and are using acquisitions to access market leaders and accelerate growth in market share.”Major emerging market players are targeting leading brands in mature markets, according to the report. “Major emerging markets, bakery manufacturers and brand owners which dominate their domestic markets are making strategic acquisitions of the market leaders, and often iconic brands, in more mature and sophisticated markets.”It added: “Acquiring these brands enables diversification and gives these players access to stable cash flows and further growth opportunities.”Strategic acquirers are willing to pay high multiples, often in excess of 12x ebitda, it went on to say, to leverage new technologies, access new markets, grow product portfolios and expand addressable market size.In terms of private equity, it said that it was attracted to smaller, innovative manufacturers that have “shown they can build loyalty, achieve high levels of product development and gain significant market share”.Asian developmentsIt also found that rising disposable incomes, urbanisation and the demand for western-style diets are supporting the growth in sales of baked goods and pastries in particular. “China is set to become the second-largest baked goods market globally by 2020,” it said, “with pastries the most popular segment. These markets are attractive to major corporations which see the potential for significant sales growth.”
Subway has unveiled plans to expand the number of its stores on the south coast by more than 20 over the next 18 months.By the end of next year, the number of stores in Hampshire, the Isle of Wight, and East and West Sussex will have grown from 109 to around 130. The new stores will create a further 200 jobs.“Our target for the next 18 months is to add in excess of 20 more stores, creating opportunities for would-be entrepreneurs keen to run their own business, as well as adding more than 200 new jobs to the region,” said Subway regional development agent Mark Bradley, who is tasked with the expansion.“We will be focusing our growth on stand-alone units, drive-through and non-traditional locations, such as franchises within hospitals, transport hubs and education establishments, as well as other such complementary locations. Our growth targets mean there are plenty of opportunities for the right people with the right blend of teamwork, leadership and work ethic to become franchisees.”Subway, Bradley added, has a long-established relationship with the south coast, having opened its first ever UK store in Brighton in 1996. The store is still operational.“With a population in the region of over 3.5 million, there is still plenty of room to develop the brand,” he said.Earlier this year Subway opened its 2,500th UK store, in Bristol, with plans to increase the number of stores across the UK and Ireland to 3,000 by 2020. The move should create 5,000 new jobs.