In his capacity as a director of Kent Invicta Chamber, Maxim's Andrew Metcalf chaired the recent West Kent Economic Development Group, which brought together many important and influential businesses from across Tunbridge Wells, Tonbridge and Sevenoaks.
Held at the offices of Cripps, the law firm which employs 350 people in Tunbridge Wells and Kings Hill, the event welcomed representatives from the area's key business sectors including architects, creative industries, finance, law and commercial property.
The meeting focused on key issues facing the local business community, including:
The issue of Brexit inevitably raised its head, but not surprisingly there continues to be a concern over its implications. However, until there's clarity on what it means, the attendees felt that businesses were simply getting on with business.
Worryingly, it appears there are signs of businesses, especially those already with strong international customer bases, starting to hedge their bets and look to establish offices in the EU, and moving out of the area.
On a more positive note, the attendees recognised the benefit that the A21 dualling was having on the ability to get into town and improved traffic on the A26 London Road.
The news that Tunbridge Wells Borough Council had taken significant steps to try and halt the loss of further commercial property being converted to residential, notably major offices in the town, was also welcomed.
Business people based in West Kent who are interested in attending future meetings should contact Andrew on firstname.lastname@example.org.
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