CaptureOver 100 members of the North East Chamber of Commerce (NECC) heard the secret of Yorkshire’s success in attracting the Tour de France and the business benefits of the event at the NECC’s Tees Valley committee’s AGM.

Held at Kirkleatham Museum, Redcar, the meeting’s guest speaker was Peter Dodd, commercial director, Welcome to Yorkshire.  He stressed the world-renowned event was captured by aiming to be awesome, offering great customer service and giving absolute attention to detail at every turn.

In terms of statistics Peter Dodd set out his organisation’s achievements, from 20,000 people being part of team Welcome to Yorkshire and the ‘glue’ which brought the whole pitch and event together, to the event being seen in 186 countries and one ice cream seller doing a whole year’s sales in 24 hours.  He also outlined the up and coming Tour de Yorkshire and the opportunities for Tees Valley.

At the meeting newly appointed Chair of the NECC Tees Valley committee, Michael McConnell who is also Group Property Director of PD Ports, stressed the strengths of the area and focus for the coming year.

“There are a number of key issues for Tees Valley including the Combined Authority in particular the election and remit of the proposed Mayor,” he said.

“Our members will be keen to learn how this role will relate to delivery of services for their businesses and local economic development.

“The Chamber also has an important role to play in tackling job creation, particular since the closure of the Redcar steelworks.   Lord Heseltine’s announcement of a Development Corporation presents a once in a generation opportunity to help regenerate the area and the Chamber will ensure it achieves the maximum advantage for Tees Valley companies and communities.”

Rachel Anderson, head of policy and representation at NECC also summarised the major achievements over the last 12 months including the infrastructure improvements on the A19/A689, the new Biologics Centre in Darlington, Visualsoft’s continuing success and the Middlesbrough STEM Centre.

She also stressed the opportunities for 2016 for all businesses such as the Stockton International Riverside Festival, the Capital of Culture bid and the Tour de Yorkshire.