Partnership celebrates 25 years of supporting enterprise in Erewash

Published on: Wednesday, 6th November 2019
Erewash Partnership Chief Executive Ian Viles

A not-for-profit company is celebrating 25 years of supporting enterprise in the Erewash Borough.

The Erewash Partnership was incorporated in May 1994 and formally launched in October that year, following the effect of the loss of long-standing traditional industries which formed the economic backbone of the area and employed many people.

It was set up by the local business community and Erewash Borough Council to try to regenerate the local economy through attracting and setting up new businesses and creating jobs.  It now has 450 members, including Derbyshire County Council, the University of Derby, Erewash Sound, the public sector, schools, charities and the voluntary sector.  Members range from sole traders to SMEs dealing across the world and cover all sectors.

It is led by a board of directors, with Ian Viles at the helm as chief executive since the beginning.

During those 25 years the Partnership has secured grants from local and national Government and the European Union totalling more than £5m.  This money, plus hard work by the Partnership, has had an impact on the local economy during this time of scores of millions of pounds.

Examples of projects managed and delivered over that time include:

  • Helping more than 1,000 businesses set up in manufacturing, engineering, retail and service sectors;
  • Setting up the Cotmanhay Enterprise Centre and delivering neighbourhood learning programmes over 10 years to help people gain new skills;
  • Developing industrial units on the Manners Industrial Estate, Ilkeston;
  • Setting up business centres at Castledine House and The Old Police Station in Ilkeston and at Bridge House, Long Eaton;
  • Managing Heritage Economic Regeneration Schemes in Ilkeston and Long Eaton to enhance buildings and the street scene;
  • Setting up and later upgrading of RadioLink systems to digital transmission in Ilkeston and Long Eaton for shops to alert each other against abuse and shoplifting;
  • Managing Erewash Borough Council's Golden Hello Scheme to attract businesses into empty shops and so breathe new life into them and the street scene;
  • Held scores of highly-successful business networking and advice sessions where people can make new contacts;
  • Organised competitions, markets and other events to attract shoppers;

Over the last seven years the Partnership has organised a heritage and classic vehicle show in Ilkeston, an initiative started by Ian.  This free show attracts thousands of spectators and entries from across the country, providing a great day out for the family, allowing businesses to open and take advantage of trade, while raising money for various charities.

The Partnership has also won awards from the National Enterprise Network although the Cotmanhay Enterprise Centre and HERS are no longer in operation.

Chief Executive of the Erewash Partnership, Ian Viles said: “The board and staff of Erewash Partnership are delighted to have reached this milestone.

“Our core purpose is to see new businesses created, to help them to grow and prosper. This is a challenging time for the business community, but we have lots of help on offer from pre start-up support as well as a strong offering of D2N2 Growth Hub programmes to equip entrepreneurs to scale and grow their business.

“We’ve provided a huge amount of support to local businesses over the last 25 years helping over 1000 business to start and thrive, and we will continue to support the economic and social prosperity of the area in the years ahead."

Share this story:

Tell us YOUR news...

If there's something happening in your area that matters to you and feel that the rest of the borough needs to know about it?