Academy addresses skills gap

Bondholder Derby College launched the risual Autodesk Academy at the Roundhouse with a view to shorten the skills gap in construction and engineering.

Our continued partnership with risual will enable our own students and apprentices to have access to the latest software that will enhance their study programmes and better prepare them for the world of work
— April Hayhurst, Business Development Director at Derby College

The Academy is a partnership between Derby College, Microsoft IT Experts, Autodesk and Cadline. Autodesk is the world-leader in 3D design and engineering software for manufacturing, building and construction. Cadline is the industrial leader in the sector for delivering CPD workshops and training construction and engineering staff on specialist software.

The specialist software and hardware needed for the Academy have been installed in a dedicated learning suite at the college and aims to upskill teachers and students in the latest Building Information Modelling (BIM) technology software. 

April Hayhurst, Derby College Business Development Director, said: "We work with a wide range of employers across all sectors to ensure they have the skills in place both now and in the future through our wide range of programmes from further education and apprenticeships to higher education and management training."

She continued: "Our continued partnership with risual will enable our own students and apprentices to have access to the latest software that will enhance their study programmes and better prepare them for the world of work."

Heavyweight designer joins Threeguru

Self-confessed Star Wars fan Ross Fletcher joins the team at threeguru

Self-confessed Star Wars fan Ross Fletcher joins the team at threeguru

Bondholder creative agency threeguru has recruited an experienced designer to join its already strong team.

The opportunity to join threeguru was too good to miss
— Ross Fletcher, Senior Creative Designer at threeguru

University of Derby graduate Ross Fletcher brings with him studio management experience, excellent communication skills and some well-established client relationships.

Ross joins the team as a Senior Creative Designer and commented: "The opportunity to join threeguru was too good to miss and will hopefully be the perfect fit for the next phase of my graphic design career."

Creative Director Chris Reynolds said: "The appointment of Ross has coincided with several key account wins where his creative input has been pivotal. Having a heavyweight designer of Ross' calibre on board will ensure threeguru continue to deliver cutting edge graphic design."

Global giant opens at RTC

Global engineering giant Siemens has opened an office on the LCR-owned RTC Business Park in Derby.

Siemens needed a permanent base in Derby due to its involvement in upcoming projects in the area, such as the £137 million revamp of Derby Midland Station in 2018.

It’s a great pleasure to open this office. I’m very proud of what we’ve done here
— Matthew Kent, Delivery Director at Siemens

The new office has some staff transferred from Birmingham and some new recruits. Now working at the office is a team of 35, but there's also capacity to double the team.

Rob Morris, Delivery Director at Siemens, said: "We already have a great team of people here who have produced outstanding work with colleagues from Network Rail. Establishing the new office in the same building as Network Rail's team means we can continue to work just as closely but from our own permanent base - allowing us scope and capacity to grow quickly."

The team has already started work for the Derby station remodelling programme and Delivery Director Matthew Kent commented: "It's a great pleasure to open this office. I'm very proud of what we've done here."

DE22 assists Fisch rebrand

Bondholder DE22 Creative has worked together with fellow Bondholder Fisch Design to create an entirely new brand, including new website and marketing material.

We finally feel like we have bolder representation of Fisch Design
— Steve Gill, Managing Director of Fisch Design

Fisch Design's brief stated that it needed to do more than just overhaul its website. Steve Gill, Managing Director, said: "We have had to really focus and face up to so many issues within our business and challenge the way we do pretty much everything."

DE22 used it's distillation process which involves probing deep into the business and discovering exactly what makes the team tick.

Steve concluded: "We finally feel like we have bolder representation of Fisch Design so that our customers can share that feel good factor and have the confidence that we are the agency that delivers."

Two relocate to Portixol

Bondholder Portixol Relocations - which has offices at Riverside Chambers and Darley Abbey Mills - has appointed two new Relationship Managers.

It’s a key priority for us to build this experienced and highly motivated team to enable us to continue to grow at this rapid pace
— Mark Averill, Managing Director of Portixol Relocations

Joining the team after a positive end to 2015 are Phil Roberts and Rebecca Ward.

Managing Director, Mark Averill, commented: "Recruiting two people of the calibre of Phil and Rebecca is a real coup for us. Phil has spent many years as a Business Banking Director covering the whole of the Midlands, so has great knowledge of the areas that we carry out relocations in. Rebecca has held various senior roles in hospitality, including managing public houses, events companies, leisure facilities and wedding venues. Rebecca's experience and, again, her friendly personality has enabled her to quickly fit into the team and provide great advice and comfort when helping people move to the area."

Portixol works closely with global relocation agents, multinational companies and also small and medium-sized firms to find perfect homes for people moving within, and to, the UK. The firm offers local orientation tours, removals, settling-in services, school searched and sourcing short-term accommodation."

Mark added: "It's a key priority for us to build this experienced and highly motivated team to enable us to continue to grow at this rapid pace. I'm delighted to welcome Phil and Rebecca to the team."

£4m Marble Hall refurbishment complete

Bondholder Connect Derby's latest development of 42 high-specification offices has now been completed at the former Rolls-Royce Marble Hall building on Nightingale Road.

We know there is a lot of interest in the services and facilities on offer and I hope the ‘Connect in the Community’ initiative will go a long way
— Martin Rawson, Deputy Leader of Derby City Council

The Grade II listed building has been empty since Rolls-Royce relocated in 2007 but Connect Derby has now transformed it into a vibrant managed workspace with a range of complimentary services. The development includes extra meeting rooms as well as a nursery which has capacity for 16 two-three year-olds and 26 three-four year-olds.

Derby's high demand for smaller, managed workspaces definitely welcomes the 42 new offices (plus a penthouse) which range in size from 100 sq ft to 800 sq ft.

Martin Rawson, Deputy Leader of Derby City Council, said: "The launch of Marble Hall signals a very exciting time for the Osmaston area. Through surveys and community engagement, we know there is a lot of interest in the services and facilities on offer and I hope the 'Connect in the Community' initiative will go a long way towards helping people in the area who are considering starting their own businesses."

If you're interested in taking office space at Marble Hall, please get in touch with Russell Rigby from Bondholder Rigby & Co by calling (01332) 20 33 77 or email

Flint Bishop's double award success

Bondholder law firm Flint Bishop's Debt Collection department has secured an award win at the home of Europe's largest credit community, CICM (Chartered Institute of Credit Management).

The team scooped the Third Party Debt Collection Team of the Year award and was highly commended for the Legal Team of the Year at an awards ceremony held in London earlier this month.

We have had an extremely successful year and the firm continues to increase in both workload and staff size
— Qamer Ghafoor, Managing Partner of Commercial Services and Head of Litigation

These awards mean that Derby's largest independent law firm has won all three nationally-recognised awards within CICM, Credit Today and the Credit Collection and Risk Awards.

The news follows an impressive 18 months where the team has secured a range of major clients from well-known brands.

Qamer Ghafoor, Managing Partner of Commercial Services and Head of Litigation, said: "The CICM is amongst one of the most prestigious and largest associations specifically for the credit industry. We have had an extremely successful year and the firm continues to increase in both workload and staff size. We are recruiting in almost all areas of the business, with new projects in the pipeline. This is only our start of the plans for 2016 and I'm confident this will be a great year for Flint Bishop."

Growing landscape architects

Landscape architect Fiona Nye has joined Bondholder Maber where she joins head of department Joe Boyce and Keith Hayday to give depth to resource the broad range of projects delivered throughout the company.

Fiona comes with experience and expertise to complete Landscape Visual Impact Assessments (L.V.I.As) which support complicated and sensitive planning applications within the countryside or town/cityscape.

Maber's landscape architects have become experts within this area and the firm's in-house design service can bring a range of advantages to projects. The company's landscape team uses the same software as its architects and interior designers for a coherent BIM model for internal and external teamwork.

PKF Cooper Parry appoints new director

Making headlines as part of its recruitment drive Bondholder PKF Cooper Parry has appointed a well-known name in the Midlands' IT sector, Paul Hayes.

The unique culture was a compelling reason for me to join the firm
— Paul Hayes

Paul joins the company as its new Director of IT Solutions after leaving his previous post as Managing Director at a competitor IT firm. Paul has 18 years' experience and brings with him to the company a wealth of knowledge and ideas.

In his new role Paul will be teaming up again with Brett Critchley - also a former Managing Director of and IT firm - and working alongside fellow partner Victoria Playford to expand the firm's Microsoft cloud offering, infrastructure and IT outsourcing services across both the East and West Midlands.

Paul commented: "The unique culture was a compelling reason for me to join the firm. Its ethos, attitude and approach to all aspects of the business is incredibly refreshing and allows the office environment to really flourish."

£2m boost to prevent flood risks

The "Our City, Our River" project - which sets out to reduce flooding risks for around 2,250 properties in the Derby city and Pride Park areas - has received £2 million funding for its first phase.

The first phase is worth a total of £15.6 million and will provide 1,140 properties with better flood protection, 16 hectares of brownfield land being unlocked for development, 510 new homes and 700 new jobs being created.

In total, up to £12 million could be released from the D2N2 Local Growth Fund after economic benefits can be shown from earlier stages. Bondholder Derby City Council, the Environment Agency and government are also funding partners in the project.

Peter Richardson, Chairman of the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership, said: "Flooding is a recurring threat to homes and businesses, with terrible human and economic costs. Our City, Our River is a major scheme aiming to not only protect what is already there but also 'unlocking' opportunities for further commercial land development, including housing, and to enhance the project area's attractiveness for tourism and leisure use. That is why D2N2 is making a significant investment in this project."

Councillor Martin Rawson, Deputy Leader for Derby City Council, added: "I am delighted that the Our City, Our River project has secured funding from the D2N2's Local Enterprise Partnership. This funding will contribute to our objectives of protecting people and property from the risk of flood, while providing an opportunity for our riverside quarter to benefit from significant regeneration. We will see the city centre reconnected to the river, and reap the economic and social benefits associated with a vibrant and reinvigorated riverside community."

Opportunity knocks for Derby

Derby continues to be a cost-effective office and retail location with plenty of opportunities for investors and developers according to Market Insite 2016 launched by Bondholder Innes England.

Nick Hosking, Shareholding Director at Innes England,  commented that the lack of commercial property was "a real challenge for the market" and that the launch of Infinity Park Derby will be a real "game changer" for the city.

Derby’s Office Market

In the office market, the report shows that Derby’s Pride Park continues to be the premium business location of choice for many new businesses moving to the city, including Bondholders Knights Professional Services and Aspin Group. The year also saw a significant uptake of serviced offices in the city centre, largely through Derby City Council’s Connect scheme, which has created ca. 50,000 sq ft of office space in the past two years in response to the needs of Derby’s flourishing start-ups and SMEs.

Some of the city centre’s lower-grade office space, such as St. Peter's House and Roman House, have been snapped up by developers for conversion to residential use, but the demand for new and refurbished office space in the city does, and will continue to, exist.  The availability of top-grade office stock in the city is at its lowest since pre-recession days, and the city’s focus needs to turn to the provision of 1,500 - 5,000 sq ft, offices, of modern design and with attractive lease terms, which new and expanding businesses can move into to support their growth plans.  It is clear that there is an opportunity for developers in Derby right now to provide what the market requires.

The Retail Renaissance

Market Insite highlights the renaissance in Derby’s retail and leisure scene over the past couple of years.  Independents in and around the Cathedral Quarter are going from strength to strength, desirable brands such as Yo! Sushi, MAC, Byron and Tiger have all taken space in intu Derby, and new brands such as Turtle Bay, Cosy Club, Prezzo and White Stuff have all spotted opportunities in Derby’s city centre.

The report highlights that Derby is far more cost-effective than its local rivals when it comes to rent levels, offering retailers in Derby more space for their money and opportunities for greater overall financial returns.

Industrial Stock Market

Competitive industrial rents highlight Derby’s excellent connectivity within the East Midlands, and the availability of industrial stock in Derby is strong.  There is renewed confidence in this market locally, with the success of Derby Commercial Park - including the new speculative 'Angle 325' building about to be let to a major high-street retailer – Eagle Park on Alfreton Road and plans for Derby Triangle all progressing. 

Speaking at the launch, Strategic Director of Communities and Place for Derby City Council, Christine Durrant, highlighted Derby’s Enterprise Zone, Infinity Park Derby. The site has the potential to deliver a world-class engineering and technology park, building on Derby's 300-year industrial heritage.

Inward Investment Executive at Marketing Derby, Jimmy Drew said ‘Innes England’s Market Insite report is always a useful summary of the East Midlands markets, which backs up the information we are asked for by investors looking at Derby.  This year’s report really highlights that Derby is a city on the up, and that there are real opportunities in the next few years to develop Derby’s offer even further.”

Lottery winner picks Rhodes

Bondholder Rhodes Wealth Management has been chosen by a £2.6 million lottery winner to manage his newfound wealth.

Matt Evans, who is a postman, had already been friends with the director of Rhodes Wealth Management, Adam Rhodes, for over a decade so the choice was a natural one.

Matt said: "I met Adam and we completed some cash flow modeling to give examples of what could happen to my money based on a number of scenarios. This has helped me understand how my fortune will grow, what I can spend now and how to invest wisely to ensure I have a regular income."

Adam Rhodes commented: "To suddenly come into such a fortune can be quite a shock. Whilst it might solve many initial problems, instant wealth can make life more complex and lottery winners particularly can be prone to making poor decisions and being overly generous."

Before his lottery win, Matt lived with his mum and dad and their seven dogs. He still lives in the same town but now owns his own substantial property and a new BMW M6.

Ten years of BEC Consulting

Bondholder Built Environment Consulting (BEC) is celebrating a decade in business, attributing its personal relationships and long-term recruitment philosophy as key to growth in the service sector.

The building services consultancy can call upon a staff of 20, including engineers, specialised CAD operators using both 2D and 3D CAD (Revit) packages, which has placed the firm in an ideal position to provide design services for a large portfolio of varied clients and projects.

The firm has a long history of working with contractors, which it still considers as a significant market place and one it will continue to value and operate in.

Carl Ackers, Director of Built Environment Consulting, said: "Our aim is to employ high calibre staff to help ensure that our service is the best we are able to provide. We will always try and avoid being a 'bums on seats' type of employer and we will always strive to offer the best service to both our existing and future clients. After ten years in the industry we have managed to successfully adopt and implement this philosophy in to our recruitment strategy."

Through focusing on customers' needs and requirements, careful recruiment, strategic management and investment in software and hardware, the firm is positioned to offer a range of services to the market place, including mechanical and electrical engineering, BIM services to level II, thermal modelling providing SBEM's, EPC and SAP calculations, BREEAM support and specialist lighting design.

Carl added: "We've had a fantastic ten years in business, and through careful recruitment and training we feel that we are in a strong position to target bigger projects and establish new clients."

Planning application for A52 improvement


A planning application has been submitted to Derby City Council for various improvements on the A52.

Improvements include: 

  • realigned A52 Wyvern junction;
  • replacement footbridge and embankments;
  • highway;
  • construction of a new pumping station and associated earthworks to the south of Wyvern Way;
  • new access road to Toys 'R' Us car park;
  • construction of a new noise bund to the north of the A52.

To view the full planning application, go to Derby City Council's eplanning service and quote 01/16/00087

IT consultancy moves to bigger base

Bondholder and IT consultancy firm Economit has moved to a bigger base and taken on new staff as business continues to grow.

Formed in September 2011, the firm has now taken a lease on larger premises, The Colour Shed, at Darley Abbey Mills, to cope with expansion.

The company's work focuses on providing digital transformation services which include everything from IT infrastructure and networking to mobile technologies and unified communications, all strategically integrated with saving costs and improving process efficiencies in mind, hence the name Economit.

Since it started the company has achieved savings of more than £1.5m for clients – mainly in the leisure, professional services, and distribution and manufacturing sectors across The Midlands.

Before leaving the previous office, Economit recruited two new staff – Charlotte Clifford as project co-ordinator, and Rob Marshall as principal consultant who can go into companies as an IT director.

Since moving the company has recruited Nick Briars as head of project delivery.

Now the company is looking to take on an associate consultant and an apprentice administrator.

As part ofits growth and development the company recently achieved ISO 9001, a quality management standard accreditation.

Morrison Design appoints three Associate Directors

Left to right: Peter Newman, Nik Clarke and David Gardner

Bondholder architect practice Morrison Design Ltd is pleased to announce the promotion of Peter Newman, Nik Clarke and David Gardner to the roles of Associate Directors in recognition of their significant contribution to the company.

The promotion rewards their commitment over many years and we are sure it will enhance the continued success and development of the practice and bodes well for the coming years
— Nigel Walding, Director of Morrison Design Ltd

Director Nigel Walding said: "Both myself and co-director George Love are delighted to have three such talented and committed individuals within the Morrison team. The promotion rewards their commitment over many years and we are sure it will enhance the continued success and development of the practice and bodes well for the coming years. We have a rich history and bright future."

Their combined experience of 44 years builds on and cements the practice's key skills across a broad range of market sectors in which the practice operates.

These promotions come as a key part of the company's strategy for future development, and the team is pleased to have been in the fortunate position of being able to make these appointments from long-standing and dedicated existing employees.

Tioga teams up with Sky Recruitment Solutions

Expert in electronic assembly and Bondholder Tioga has selected Sky Recruitment Solutions as a local staffing provider due to a new contract win.

All the roles start on a temporary basis for 12 weeks with the opportunity to become 12-month contracts and potentially permanent.

Inital feedback about Sky Recruitment Solutions has been that the recruitment services provider has a thorough approach and that the right sorts of candidates have been sourced.

Managing Director of Sky Recruitment Solutions, David Torrington first approached Tioga's Helen Higginbotham to explain the company's interesting in working closely with other Bondholders at exclusive preferential rates.

For more information on Sky Recruitment Services, visit the comapny website here.

Hires and promotions at Flint Bishop

Zoe Dowthwaite (left) and Kelly Westwood (right)

Bondholder law firm Flint Bishop Solicitors is delighted to announce the promotion of Zoe Dowthwaite to Head of Marketing following almost four years of working at the firm.

Zoe has shot up the ranks at the multi-award winning law firm following recent successful marketing campaigns, which include obtaining the firm's International award given by Thomson Reuters for use of the firms CRM database.

Flint Bishop has also recruited Kelly Westwood who brings with her a wealth of experience in profiling law firms, event management and national targeting, which will aid the firms profile within the local and national market place.

The firm continued to build on its successes which, in the last twelve months have seen highlights in all areas of law, evidenced in the nine award nominations in the last twelve months.

Andrew Cochrane, Partner, Head of Commercial Services and Licensing at Flint Bishop, said: "We're branching out into unknown markets, winning large mutli-million pound national clients, are enjoying multiple award nominations and pushing forward with growth plans. We're pleased to acknowledge the commitment Zoe has given the firm during the last four years and to welcome Kelly into the team."

PwC's standout year

Bondholder PwC has hailed a 'standout year' after advising on transactions worth more than £7bn.

Advising on high profile deals including the sale of Centre Parcs and the preservation of 1,100 jobs at steel giant Caparo which went into administration in October.

Matt Waddell, Partner and Head of PwC's deals business in the Midlands, said: "We have seen a significant increase in activity levels and are delighted to have advised both long-established and new clients on so many successful transactions over the last 12 months."

He continued: "As we look forward into 2016, we expect this upturn in deals activity to continue and, with our continued investment in our Midlands deals business, we look forward to another successful year."

Smith Cooper celebrates 30 years with new partner

New partner at Smith Cooper, James Delve

New partner at Smith Cooper, James Delve

A director at Bondholder Smith Cooper has been promoted to partner.

James’ appointment is representative of the ongoing success and development of the firm
— David Nelson, Partner at Smith Cooper

James Delve joined the firm in 2009 and has since led the firm's audit team in Derby and has also worked closely with its business advisory team.

The promotion comes as Smith Cooper celebrates its 30th year in business and reaching the £11m mark in turnover for its last financial year.

David Nelson, Partner at Smith Cooper, said: "James' appointment is representative of the ongoing success and development of the firm and we are delighted to welcome him to the partnership. The recognition and promotion of our top talent is a high priority for our firm."