Cotton Court Business Centre


Our friends at Glovers Bar are up for multiple awards!

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Our friends at Glovers are excited to have a number of nominations in the It Smiles Better Awards 2016!

Vote for them here:

They are up for the prestigious ‘Preston’s ‘Bar of the Year’ and Preston’s ‘Club of the Year’

Their wonderful members of staff are also up for individual awards including:


Sophie McBride – ‘Best Customer Service in a Leisure Business’?

Her quirky charm, endless energy and never-ending smile Sophie is the shining star in the customer service award category.

Jay Whalley – ‘Entertainer of the Year?

The man defined not only by his ever-evolving musical style,but also his numerous hairstyles! He has kept at the cutting edge of his craft and always leaves the crowds wanting more.

Chelsea Chard – ‘Leisure Manager of the Year’?

Chelsea deserves your vote for her passion and drive in the hospitality industry, her wholehearted leadership and being one of the consistent managers in the city’s nightlife scene.

Rob Binns – ‘Outstanding Achievement in Leisure’?

Rob started out in 1991 as a promoter, he then started putting events on in many of the city’s venues and creating iconic venues of the past including Mystic Productions, Cheeky Monkey, Browns, Truth; and 25 years later with Glovers. Rob is a very worthy contender in the ‘Outstanding Achievement in Leisure’

Welcome to the Cotton Court team, Ella!

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Hello everyone, I’m Ella Worthy, Cotton Court’s Business Centre Administrator, and I can’t wait to get going and explore even into the ins and outs of everything that’s going on in and around the building.
I began my journey with Cotton Court a few days ago and have thoroughly enjoyed every moment so far. I have prior experience of working within office environments through working as a digital marketing assistant and as an administration and accounts assistant at a nursery. I also have a level Three Diploma in Social Media and Digital Marketing for Business and three A-levels.
I am no stranger to Cotton Court as I have attended many courses and have even taken part in the studio’s camera club on several occasions.
I feel like I have really slotted well into the team and so far Amy and Jon have really helped me understand the business as a whole. I’m really looking forward to working with Amy on the accounts as this is something I take a keen interest in.
Outside of my the office bubble, I have been an adult leader for Girlguiding at St Andrews Brownies and Guides for just over five years and my love of the outdoors has made me a keen photographer.

Work Hard, Play Hard – Office Social!!

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On behalf of all the team we’d like to invite you to our second office social here at Cotton Court on Friday 6th May. We’ve planned table football, ping-pong, giant jenga, food and drinks from 5pm – late.

We know some of you are competitive (without naming anyone) so we’ ll make sure everything is set up for you to pop in and get some practice in!




Delegates from 9 cities across Europe have gathered in Preston with us to discuss boosting the local economy this week as part of an URBACT project, funded by the European Regional Development Fund.

This network of cities, known as Procure, is being led by representatives of Preston City Council. Procure is interested in investigating how procurement processes can be changed to better support the local economy. If they are successful in their application to enter Phase 2 of the URBACT project, they will be examining themes such as EU legislation, spend analysis, the role of social value in procurement, raising awareness of the procurement processes of SMEs, the impact of procurement and environmental procurement.

While visiting Preston, the delegates have discussed how they will proceed if their application to continue is successful; visited a traditional country pub; and had opportunities to experience our city centre.

Councillor Matthew Brown, Executive Member of community social justice, inclusion and policy for Preston City Council, says “It has been our pleasure to welcome our European partners to Preston. There’s a growing demand for innovative ways to boost the local economy and we are proud to provide leadership in this project. Much of our income is raised locally and it is important that we re-invest tax-payers money for the benefit of the local economy.

Now’s the time to rebalance the economy towards a fairer, democratic and more community-minded future. It’s great to have Preston at the heart of this initiative, which is gaining strength across Europe.”

Best of Britannia Returns to Preston!

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The Best of Britannia are bringing their unique pop-up Department Store to Preston.

BOB North will include brands from the genre’s of menswear, womenswear, childrenswear, footwear, furniture and furnishings, jewellery and accessories, food, drink and entertainment, showcasing the best of what the North West, and Britain, has to offer. With products available to buy on the day you can shop til you drop or conveniently order for delivery.

The weekend will offer style-conscious shoppers a unique retail experience in the historic centre of Preston. Come and explore the Old Post Office to see what local and national designers, manufacturers and makers have to offer for 2016.

BOB celebrate British design, manufacturing, makers & their incredible skills so make sure you visit and celebrate Made in Britain with them.

Opening Times

Friday 11 March – 5.00pm – 11.00pm
Saturday 12 March – 10.00am – 11.00pm
Sunday 13 March – 10.00am – 6.00pm
Please note on Friday and Saturday inside areas close at 8pm with outside entertainment, food and drink until late as specified.

*Trade only entry is available on Friday 11th March 10.00am – 4.00pm. For more information please contact the organiser – details below.


BOB North is an event experience not to be missed.

Purchase your tickets here

One ticket gives you unlimited access all weekend. The ticket is exchanged for a wristband on entry.

*Information courtesy of

Guest Blog from Rejuvenate

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I am sure we can all agree that moving is always an interesting time.  However we are very excited to now be based here at Cotton Court and have been made to feel very welcome during our first month.  Over the next 12 months we will be concentrating on a number of projects we actually cannot wait to roll out.  These focus on creating opportunities to support those who have been personally let down by circumstance and ‘the system’ from living in one chaotic world.  We aim to do this by rejuvenating the approach; access and attitude to health and happiness; helping people create a more healthy, natural but realistic balance in life.

Our first project is due to be launched at the end of March and focuses on nutrition in the form of healthy food selection and guidance.  Rejuvenate has affiliated with Lola’s, an Egyptian restaurant here in the heart of Preston to prepare and deliver fresh authentic dishes to you whilst at work or at home.  Pulses have been the staple of the national diet for thousands of years and this really has been a perfect partnership in creating light bites; main meal and desert options to serve as part of a protein and carbohydrate meal plan.  We have two sampling evenings organised in March to give you the opportunity to try dishes from the menu you may not necessarily opt for.  The evenings will also allow us to hear your thoughts and opinions; providing the opportunity for us to make those final tweaks to the menu before the actual launch.

From 15 February we will also start to take bookings for holistic treatments.  Although January may be out of the way, we still find that we are all hoping for those lighter months; so why not treat yourself and celebrate the final stretch of one long winter.  We would love nothing more than to help you relax after a hard day and eliminate those toxins helping to boost circulation.  We are able to offer Swedish and Aromatherapy massage and Reflexology here at Cotton Court along with Facials and Non-Surgical Facelifts.  Introductory offers are available with 50% off all treatments.




Preston turned purple on Saturday night as thousands of people descended on the Flag Market for Preston Business Improvement District’s (BID) ‘Purple Party’.

The event, organised to highlight the city’s award-winning status as a Purple Flag destination, saw people come to Preston to enjoy a free, live gig before experiencing the best of what the city has to offer. Official figures saw 3,018 people enjoy the event, across the course of the evening.

Headline performances from Craig Charles and MistaJam, supported by local DJ Nick Carter, created a celebratory atmosphere on the city’s Flag Market as they performed from the Harris Museum balcony.



BID manager, Mark Whittle, said:  “The premise was to attract people to Preston for a special event, encourage them to visit our bars, clubs and restaurants, and even stay in our hotels, before and after the event.

“It’s the first large scale, free to attend event of this nature anywhere in the North West, which celebrates and promotes a city’s leisure sector by throwing a party for people.”

Party-goers were treated to a two-hour, live full production show, following a welcome from the SPARK! Drummers, GlowBots, carnival showgirls, stilt-walkers, fire eaters and more.

Those applying for tickets were predominately from Lancashire but some had traveled from locations including Leeds, Edinburgh, Birmingham and Inverness.

One of them, Sally Walsh (32), from Leeds, said: “As soon as we heard about this event we had to go; it was amazing, using a beautiful building like a museum to throw a party for so many people and for it to be free of charge was fabulous. We traveled down from Carlisle and are making a weekend of it in Preston; we’ve had a great time and will come back.”

Andrea Mellon, owner of Duk~Pond on Cross Street and a member of the BID Committee, added: “It was a great night, events like this are really important to show people what Preston has to offer – that it’s got something for everyone as well as being safe and vibrant.

“Preston does have a great offer post-5pm and so many people arriving in our great city and supporting our local economy was fantastic; I hope it’s a regular event.”

Check out the video thats ben produced by RTR Digital




Last Friday saw the third instalment of the annual Cotton Court Christmas Party at Glovers bar. There was a great party atmosphere, with around 150 people in attendance, and it was great to see so many familiar faces.

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The team at Cotton Court would like to say a huge thank you to everyone that attended and made the night so enjoyable, and an even bigger thank you to everyone for the amount of gifts that were brought for the children of Barnardos, our chosen charity.

Guests enjoyed the finest Indian cuisine courtesy East Z East, photo-booth fun, live entertainment and a complimentary bar at Glovers.


Barnardo’s works to transform the lives of vulnerable children and young people, and aims to enable them to fulfil their potential. The charity provides a comprehensive range of local support, counselling, fostering, adoption, education, residential and training services for more than 100,000 children, young people and their families.

It’s still not too late to donate! We are collecting presents at Cotton Court until Mon 7th December, so feel free to drop in some gifts to our reception.  Presents for teenagers are particularly valuable as is young carers and homeless units that are most in need of presents. Barnardo’s have also advised that the gifts are best not wrapped.

You can find out more about the work of Barnardos on their website or by following them on Twitter @barnardos

We’re already looking forward to next year and we hope to see you all there again!



Weights & measures

Before my accident a couple of weeks ago, I hit the gym. I know what you’re thinking. No, it didn’t need cleaning already.

You would be partially right though as I wasn’t there training, my visit was to perform an experiment which I will be publishing the results of later this month. I wrote a post back in May about training systems that are peddled by many trainers and training organisations as “least restrictive”, “therapeutic” and “non- harmful” and the point I wanted to get across from performing this experiment is that often, they “non-work” and they’re the “least effective”.

Reasonable force

Now I’m not saying that we need to fight fire with fire and that massive levels of force should be applied unnecessarily to those in our care. What I am promoting however, is that staff should have the correct training and the necessary risk reduction measures to protect themselves and those in their care. From their Ivory towers managers, directors, school leaders and training providers can sometimes cast bold statements dismissing the need for physical skills training:

“It never gets to that stage”

“Well it just wouldn’t, we don’t need to teach them anything more than managing challenging behaviours”

“If staff do their job right they wont be needing restraint or self-defence”


Pedlars of death and injury

Then in my opinion, we have the worst offenders. The misguided, often unqualified trainers themselves who are out there delivering strategies that just wouldn’t work in reality. Often these are dressed up with a link to an institute’s badge or, which use fluffy language to sell their products (therapeutic, non-violent, positive, least restrictive or non-harmful) they make it sound as if staff aren’t allowed to ever cause injury. For example to leave a mark, use pain or cause discomfort to an attacker in a genuine emergency is often labelled as excessive or that to do so would be brutal in some way, or even unlawful. I have spoken to members of staff who when techniques have failed and resulted in injury (to either party) the blame has been directly put on them;

“We didn’t mean do it like THAT”

“It was YOU who did the technique wrong”

Often techniques are too long winded, too complicated, depend on fine motor skills or are simply ineffective due to their mechanics or logistics. In regard to using force there is no such thing as a legal or illegal technique. The teaching of principles, the provision of an overview of the law and to give staff an effective toolbox of techniques they will actually remember is a far more audit-able and effective approach to the delivery of any physical skills course.

My search for super-humans

Now for a while since my post on basket holds and the post I did discussingstrategies that don’t work, I promised to further investigate these strategies, so I decided to get in touch with Happy Valley productions and shoot some video footage on the subject.

Often I utilise my other trainers or participants on the course who I will attack and then invite them to release my grip or control, hold safely or escort me to pressure test and demonstrate that despite my size and strength the techniques are still effective.

Talking with a friend of mine who prior to becoming a qualified trainer was trained in several other so called “accredited” systems. In accordance with their own “code of practice”, these systems do not allow techniques to cause an attacker any pain – even if someone is trying to cause you serious harm. Yes, that would be a direct violation of their human rights.

To see if the techniques taught by these providers to carers, teachers, hospital staff & others actually work when used against people who may be stronger than them, I needed to pressure test them.

So, I obtained three of these “magical” manuals from different providers and spoke to trainers who helped me understand how they are to be performed. I then needed to find people who were stronger than me and get them to attack me whilst I then attempt to defend myself and “breakaway” using these “non violent methods of crisis intervention”. This would then simulate a similar difference in strength for example of a teacher, carer or door supervisor who then attempted these techniques in an emergency.

Thanks go to Steve Todd at Sculptures gym in Lancashire for the use of his fully equipped gymnasium, to personal trainer & Marcus Harrison of Goliath training systems and professional body-builder James Flemming.

Just to clarify, this wasn’t some penchant for auto-erotic asphyxiation! Final thanks goes to Curtis Young who was our paramedic for the day who remained on standby in case I hadn’t managed to “tap out” in time.