Cotton Court Business Centre

Author: Amy Blundell

Gym Wolf PT launches new Elite fitness hub!

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Gym Wolf PT’s new membership site packed with various health & fitness courses/programmes, downloads, ebooks, workouts, recipes, diet plans, exercise videos, challenges and much more. Extra content is being added regularly.
Going forward he will be making this fitness hub a paid monthly subscription (probably £9.99 to £17.99 per month). However, as a pre-launch Gym Wolf PT is doing a special offer of LIFETIME standard access for a one-off payment of just £27. There is then an optional upgrade to LIFETIME VIP access for an extra £97.
On the GymWolfPT Elite Sales Page https://gymwolfpt.kartra.com/page/standardaccess there are buttons to take you through to checkout ( https://gymwolfpt.kartra.com/checkout/e73d4a89b20430e99d63f3954579ef14 )
On the checkout page there is a text box, where the code COTTONCOURT can be used for a further 25% off for Cotton Court customers . Therefore the price for Lifetime Access to GymWolfPT Elite will be:-
  • GymWolfPT Elite Standard Lifetime Access – £27 £20.25
  • Upgrade To GymWolfPT Elite VIP Lifetime Access – £97 £72.75


Wellbeing Lancashire Organisation Lok to Grow their Community with Membership Launch Event

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Wellbeing Lancashire Organisation Look to Grow their Community with Membership Launch Event

Wellbeing Lancashire CIC, formed by a group of Lancashire wellbeing providers, is holding a virtual launch event, 5th November,  to invite other providers across the private, public and third sectors of Lancashire to join them by becoming members. 

With a mission to make Wellbeing a top priority in the county, the membership launch event is an opportunity for wellbeing businesses serving the county to join a framework for delivery. 

Wellbeing Lancashire Co-Founder, Jason Kingston, also of Cube Thinking comments, “Wellbeing Lancashire membership will not only allow providers to join the shop window of amazing wellbeing services that this county has to offer; they will become part of a movement that is so needed right now. We look forward to revealing all at our event on 5th November.”

Steve Fogg, Chairman of the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership and new Leader of the Seed Alliance will introduce the virtual event; which will also include a live tour of the new Health Innovations Campus at Lancaster University; and confirmed Q & A panel guests Talib Yaseen OBE, Executive Director of Transformation, Lancashire & South Cumbria Integrated Care System; Professor StJohn Crean, Pro Vice Chancellor (Research, Innovation and Enterprise), University of Central Lancashire; Duncan Sandford, Managing Director Digital Lancashire; Adrian Leather, CEO Active Lancashire.

Of his support of Wellbeing Lancashire, Steve Fogg comments, “There is an inescapable link between our health and the economy. In Lancashire the inequality of health has created a gap with the rest of the UK that must be levelled. I believe that what Wellbeing Lancashire are looking to achieve; and their collaborative ethos is engaging and will help provide a platform to fuel our local economy’s recovery.”

The event will take place via Zoom, 5th November, 12.00-13.30. Book your place on this link https://www.trybooking.com/uk/events/landing?eid=14353

For further information:

Cheryle Britton

Founder YOLO Wellbeing/ Co-Founder Wellbeing Lancashire

01772283139/ 07912536658

cbritton@yolowellbeing.co.uk

Wellbeing Lancashire Big Bang Membership Launch 5 November 2020

 

Wellbeing Lancashire Members include

Cheryle Britton, Founder YOLO Wellbeing; Celia Gaze, Founder and Managing Director, The Wellbeing Farm and the North West Centre for Business & Team Building; Jason Kingston, Partner Cube Thinking; Lee Chambers, Founder, Essentialise and Emma-Louise Fusari, Founder In-House Health

Supported by: Matt Gibbs, Founder, WALX Preston; Debs Brookes, Founder Roots of Life Health and Wellbeing Events; Jackie Robinson, Founder, The Balance Approach; Jo Le’Febour, Founder, Tame Your Sugar Monster; Sunny Sandwell, Founder and Managing Director, Fun at Work and Sunshine Events; Jackie Connaghton, Co-Founder, Business Health Institute

 

Wellbeing Lancashire Membership Launch Event

Agenda

12.00    Event opened by Host – Jason Kingston, Partner Cube Thinking/ Wellbeing Lancashire Co-Founder 

12.05    Introduction – Why is Wellbeing Lancashire so important?

Steve Fogg, Chairman Lancashire Enterprise Partnership/ Leader of SEED Alliance 

12.15    Live tour of the Health Innovations Campus (HIC Lancaster University) 

                Glyn Jones, Commercial Programmes Manager, HIC Lancaster University

12.25    Member benefits Roots of Life Magazine and Events

                Debs Brooks, Founder Roots of Life/ Co-Founder Wellbeing Lancashire

12.30    Member benefits NWEEG Lite membership

 Steve Smith, Managing Director Anthem Engagement/CEO NWEEG/Co-Founder      Wellbeing Lancashire

12.40    Wellbeing Lancashire website – the trip advisor of Wellbeing Services in Lancashire

Lee Chambers Founder Essentialise Workplace Wellbeing/ Environmental Psychologist and Wellbeing Consultant/Radio presenter Ribble FM/ Co-Founder Wellbeing Lancashire

12.50   CAD Talks in association with Wellbeing Lancashire

Elliot Evans, NHS Connect My Community, and Jackie Robinson, Founder The Balance Approach/ Wellbeing Manager, Lancashire BME Network/ Co-Founder Wellbeing Lancashire 

13.00   Membership criteria – standards, values and best practice         

Emma Fusari RGN, Founder In-House Health/Radio Presenter Fab Radio International/Co-Founder Wellbeing Lancashire

13.10   Q&A Panel Wellbeing Lancashire – The Power of Collaboration

Talib Yaseen, OBE, Executive Director of Transformation, NHS South Cumbria and Lancashire; Professor StJohn Crean, Pro Vice Chancellor (Research, Innovation and Enterprise), University of Central Lancashire; Duncan Sandford, Managing Director, Digital Lancashire; Adrian Leather, CEO Active Lancashire

13.30     Close-   Jason Kingston

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cotton Court’s Robert Binns Becomes Director New Hair Brand

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Cotton Court Director, Robert Binns, is director of a new hair product inspired by a three-year-old girl and developed and manufactured in the North West of England has been officially launched onto the global market.

The FYC (For Your Curls) product range is specially designed for mixed race and curly hair and is looking to take a slice of a hair care market worth £1.72bn in the UK alone.

Rob Binns, co-founder of the Preston-based business, began working on the range with his business partners Bradley Lincoln and Mike Peters after failing to find the right kind of hair product for his three year-old-daughter Lydia.

He said: “We’ve got a little girl aged three with frizzy, curly hair and we couldn’t find any products that worked for her that didn’t contain harsh chemicals. So, together with Brad and Mike, we set about creating them. 

“Having seen first-hand what an issue curly hair can be, there are so many textures, so many differences and so many options. So we started speaking to lots of different curlies… mixed black and white, Latino, European, mixed Asian and black, female and male… and we found out that it’s the same for all of them. The issues are the same. We wanted to develop a product range to help all kinds of curlies to live with and love their hair. Lydia certainly loves it!” 

He added: “We are really excited about FYC’s potential. We feel we’ve found a genuine gap in the market, a haircare product that  meets a real need. 

“The sales potential for FYC is massive and not just in the UK. Our aim is to build and develop a strong British brand that can make a real impact. 

“We’ve got ambitious marketing and sales development plans and a strong and enthused team around us. We’ve set ourselves ambitious but very realistic targets for growth.”

FYC is vegan friendly and made from naturally derived ingredients including shea butter, organic aloe vera, olive oil and argan oil. It contains no silicones, sulphates or parabens, which is particularly important for curly hair. 

The range includes shampoo, conditioners and refresh & detangle spray. Its creators say it has been specifically designed to work with “wavy, open and tight curls”, both mixed-race and curly. It has taken 24 months from the initial concept to the launch.

FYC has based its manufacturing and sales operations in Lancashire. An online sales platform has been created, working with Preston-based e-commerce specialists EKM. The products are being made by a specialised, award-winning contract manufacturer.

Bradley, like Rob, is a parent of mixed-race children and the creator of the ‘Mix-d’ concept of resources and materials developed around the subject of mixed-race identity in the UK. 

That work included partnering with the Boss Model Management Agency, Sassoon hairdressing salon group and Harvey Nichols to develop the UK’s first mixed-race model competition.

He headed the detailed research that led to the development of FYC. He said: “When we began the research into haircare formulations and other lifestyle products, we very quickly became aware there was a massive gap in the market.

“FYC is a unique offering, specially formulated for mixed race and curly hair and is gender neutral. It uses only good quality, naturally derived ingredients to enhance its performance.”

Mike has a strong and highly-successful track record in the beauty and hair product sector, including work in West Africa. 

The entrepreneur founded Universal Products Manufacturing, a contract manufacturing business that began life with a workforce of four and a first-year turnover of £79,000. It delivered products for some of the top names in the beauty world.

He oversaw the Kirkham-based business’ growth to a £38m turnover, 290-staff organisation when it was sold in January 2014 to a Dublin based healthcare group for £13million. 

He was also the director of a pharmaceuticals operation that was sold for £28m in a separate deal.

Mike, who was honoured with an MBE for services to North West industry and is a former Lancastrian of the Year, has brought all his manufacturing experience to the business.

He said: “The potential for FYC is enormous. We’re a British brand and our products are being manufactured here in the North West of England in a state-of-the-art, industry-leading facility. 

“Being based in this part of the world, harnessing its talent and working with companies here is something that is really important to us.”

Successful serial entrepreneur Rob is managing director of the Cotton Court Business Centre in Preston. He also has interests in a range of tech and telecoms businesses, as well as property and energy companies.

Rob is also a member of the strategic board driving Preston’s Town Deal bid. In 2019 he was part of a delegation of Lancashire entrepreneurs invited to London to meet the Business Secretary.

To find out more about FYC and its range of hair care products please visit: foryourcurls.com

 

 

Happiness is All My Favourite Things!

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The second wave of COVID cases and lock down measures is having a huge impact on our mental health and wellbeing; we’re being denied so many things we take for granted. It is really easy to become anxious or start suffering from low moods; feelings of frustration, anger or becoming upset,lonely or sad.

Sometimes we need to stop for a moment and think of the things that can change our mood for the better. Things that can make us feel happy. Our senses are really powerful tools to help improve how we feel. The limbic system of the brain helps us to process the information our senses send via our autonomous and central nervous systems. Simply put they help us put the world and our surroundings into perspective. Although easier said than done right now don’t you think?

The limbic system is also responsible for processing emotions such as fear, anger and pleasure and it also determines which memories to hold and where to store them. If we feed our sensory system with pleasant information and signals it will influence our mood and emotions in a positive way.

Here are our YOLO Wellbeing top 5 things to try to power up your senses and get HAPPY.

Try one or all of the following and see what effect they have on you:

  1. Play your favourite song
  2. Find pictures from your favourite place or holiday
  3. Wear your favourite perfume, aftershave or hunt out your favourite smell
  4. Eat or drink your favourite food or drink…or both!
  5. Get dressed up in your favourite outfit…take a pic and post it on your Instagram feed

and tag @CottonCourt @YOLOWellbeing and use the hashtags #MyFavouriteThings #WellnessWednesdays 

Don’t forget to let us know how it made you feel.

Cotton Court Features in Lancashire Business View

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If you haven’t already picked up a copy, check out the latest edition of Lancashire Business View . Robert takes centre stage, discussing all things entrepreneurship in The Big Interview.

Amy also talks about the importance of a good first impression for a start-up business, and how this has changed in the new ‘online world’.

Plus we spotted plenty of other familiar faces in the magazine, discussing everything from funding to the future of workplaces!

The magazine is available to read online
https://www.lancashirebusinessview.co.uk/read-lbv94-online

Cotton Court welcomes Create Theatre Academy!

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We are looking forward to hosting Create Theatre Academy as they welcome back their students!

Who are Create Theatre?

Create Theatre Academy offers a unique training experience of the highest quality taught by industry professionals. Their mission at Create Theatre is to nurture talent and enhance performance skills with innovation and imagination. 

Create aim to build a strong foundation for their students so that they can succeed in reaching their full potential. They take pride in building student confidence, encouraging growth and creating a safe space for students to develop their skills in Musical Theatre and Acting. Create Theatre Academy are a triple threat school focussing on allthree disciplines, Acting, Singing and Dance, ensuring they bring to their students a wide range of knowledge in all areas of the industry.

Founded by Rebecca Eastham, Wesley Bromley and Alex May Roberts, who as a team of all working actors and creatives in the industry can provide a fresh and contemporary approach to our training, They pride themselves on being an inclusive and engaging place for individuals to embrace their own unique talents and skills.

Email : createtheatreacademy@gmail.com

Meet the team :

Wesley Bromley –

Wesley graduated from The Urdang Academy London with a distinction in Professional Musical Theatre and Dance. Wesley is currently working as a senior rehearsal director/ choreographer for talent artistic group/ tui sensatori international. 

 

 

Rebecca Eastham- 

Rebecca trained at the prestigious Mountview Academy of Theatre London in Musical Theatre (BA Hons) as well as working as a professional actress. Rebecca has taught drama and musical theatre ( including lamda exams) in various schools across the North West.

 

 

Alex May Roberts –

Alex May Robertr trained at the University of Central Lancashire and graduated with a degree in Musical Theatre (BA Hons). She is currently working as a drama tutor and is a highly skilled vocal coach. Alex is a professional musical theatre performer and is represented by a top London agent. 

 

Luke Massie, CEO of VibePay: “We’ve got a good chance of taking market share away from PayPal”

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Former Cotton Court resident, Luke Massie, spoke to Altfi about VibePay’s chances of taking on payment giants like PayPal and how the business coped under lockdown.

Luke launched VibeTickets from the coworking space at Cotton Court in 2013, and since then he has expanded his original ticket resale platform to create VibePay, an API-driven payment processing app that simplifies subscription and checkout processes for its customers.

Like for many other companies, Luke admits that lockdown was “extremely stressful.”

However, like many other fintechs, VibePay  experienced an increase in website traffic during lockdown as more and more people were forced to shop online. This made VibePay reassess their business objectives and bring their B2B product further forward.

Massie says that a lot of VibePay’s small business customers are people selling via their social media channels, seeing a big spike in what he calls ‘social commerce’

Read more from the interview and what is coming up for VibePay in the next few months here. 

Yolo Wellbeing – Escape to the Beach Meditation

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Meditation can be a really effective way of de-stressing and calming anxiety and negative thoughts; but it can be quite hard to master on your own. We use visual aided meditation videos as an effect part of the YOLO Wellbeing , but we have created a series of ‘Escape to….’ short guided meditation videos that you can access at anytime to provide a few minutes away from work to quieten your mind and de-stress.

Escape to the Beach video, focuses on a place where most of us feel happy and relaxed. The meditation videos are a really effective way of guiding you through your meditation. You can access the full series here.

 

10 Socially Distanced Meeting Must-Haves

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Planning and organising a conference or meeting requires a great amount of forethought and consideration at the best of times. Throw in a global pandemic, and people that are responsible for organising meetings and training sessions have a number of further considerations to make in order to ensure that their delegates feel safe. 

  1. Thermal scanning is becoming a must-have layer of security for people attending meetings and events. Thermal scanners alert venue staff if someone has an elevated temperature on arrival, giving an indication of Covid symptoms and won’t be admitted to the premises. Not having this capability will add an element of risk for attendees.
  2. A spacious room with plenty of ventilation will help delegates feel more comfortable and at ease. As well as your office boardrooms, you’ll need to bear in mind that venues will also have reduced room capacities; a room that could have once held up to 25-30 delegates now might only be able to accommodate 10 people or fewer at a safe social distance.
  3. Blended training…..do you want to offer an online option? Some of the people you’d really like to attend may not be able to due to local restrictions or personal circumstances. Choosing a venue that has a strong technical offering can really open up your options. Think tracking cameras, strong internet connection, HD screens and Zoom capabilities.
  4. Risk assessments are a must have for any meeting and events planner. A venue should have a risk assessment specifically for Covid-19, outlining the potential risks and their intended precautions. You should request this from the venue prior to the event. 
  5. Look out for the Visit England GoodToGo industry standard and consumer mark, which provide a ‘ring of confidence’ for businesses and visitors that clear processes are in place in the venue.  
  6. Consider your catering…..are the venue able to provide individually packaged lunch and refreshments for your event? When there are fewer touch points in service areas your delegates will feel more confident. 
  7. How will visitor traffic be managed? Make sure the venue has something in place for managing visitor traffic, such as a one way system, particularly for larger meetings. 
  8. Keep your delegates informed. Venues are likely to be operating stricter visitor policies and people may be required to leave their personal details on arrival for test and trace records, the waiting areas may also have restrictions.
  9. Provide attendees with travel information. Letting them know about onsite or nearby parking, and any changes to public transport will be particularly helpful during this time. 
  10. Get some feedback. What did the delegates like about the event, are there any improvements you can make next time. You want delegates to be happy to return to meetings and training, and feeling safe is key, so it’s always a good idea to follow up to see how they found the experience.

Whilst the specific requirements of your meeting and industry will dictate how you plan your event and the factors you need to consider, the nine factors we’ve discussed here are a good place to start. Don’t get stressed about your event, follow a clear process and don’t be afraid to lean on your venue for support or advice.

We pride ourselves on the level of customer service we provide here at Cotton Court, and regularly help our customers and prospective customers in the planning phase of their meeting or event. Please don’t hesitate to give us a call if you need some friendly advice around planning your next meeting.

 

The Future of Training

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Technology has transformed the training industry, courtesy of advances in machine learning, virtual reality, augmented reality, and artificial intelligence. Corporate training practices are embracing the power of technology now more than ever before, following the COVID-19 pandemic.

In this article, we will highlight the perks of both online and face-to-face training—along with the best way to make the most of both practices.

Online Training is Important

As the name suggests, online training involves the transfer of knowledge through the internet to target audiences anywhere in the globe. Experts in a particular field or subject train workers with the help of digital resources—including video tutorials, Word documents, virtual assessments, and PDFs.

In an organisation, online training may be an ongoing process whereby employees get to continually brush up on new workplace technologies and concepts. In such cases, online training may offer some advantages over face-to-face training:

  • Greater Convenience: Users can train from anywhere in the world as long as they have a reliable internet connection. Information (e.g., training videos, notes, and support) is readily accessible facilitating a faster learning experience.
  • Cost-Effective: Sure, online training may demand a high initial investment—owing to the purchase of laptops, internet subscriptions, and enrolment. But in the long-run, it’s a cheaper option than face-to-face training.
  • Game Elements: Gamification has been shown to improve knowledge retention and user engagement. With online training, you can seamlessly incorporate game elements.

Face-to-Face Training is Still Relevant

The advantages of online training and the importance of technology cannot be denied! However, there is one factor that is more fundamental…humans as inherently social beings. We constantly crave human interaction and connections—even in a world characterised by telecommunication. Personal interactions help develop meaningful relationships—making it the best way to communicate and learn.

When it comes to training, face-to-face training offers a crucial learning experience that cannot be achieved through online training. Here are some of the benefits of physical human interaction:

  • Dynamic Personal Relationship: Not all workplace skills can be taught online. Some demand a hands-on experience in a real-world setting. In certain scenarios, interacting directly with the tutor can prove to be more fulfilling than online training.
  • Clear and Elaborate: In virtual training, there’s always the risk of misinterpretation and miscommunication. Sometimes it’s hard to properly convey emotions through email or chat. Physical human interaction allows both the instructor and the trainee to better read tones, mannerisms, and body language.
  • Networking Opportunities: Face-to-face interactions facilitate richer networking relationships—and the building of stronger interpersonal bonds.
  • Memorable Experiences: Trainees can retain information and learn skills more effectively in a face-to-face setting. It’s easier to maintain attention—and the instructor can easily spot trainees who are drifting off or struggling.
  • Engagement and Feedback : Online training doesn’t lend itself nearly as well to training/discussions which rely on delegate engagement and feedback. Ideas may be stifled as delegates seem less willing to speak up and participate in online meetings.

Leveraging the Best of Both Worlds – Blended Training

Online training is convenient, but it’s not a substitute for face-to-face human interaction. For this reason, organisations can improve the quality and effectiveness of their training methods by retaining face-to-face meeting and embracing online training.

Blended training is a method of learning whereby instructor-led training is seamlessly combined with web-based technology—hence improving the outcome. Rather than stress over replacing one method with the other, blended training leverages the best of both worlds.

At Cotton Court, we added a tracking camera to our training suites so that trainers can present naturally to both a face-to-face group, and also stream the training to an online audience.