Sustainability In Our Sights At Members’ Meeting

December 7, 2022

Sustainability was a key theme of the Witham Industrial Watch (WIW) members’ meeting on Friday, 2 December 2022. 

Paul Baccarini, EHS Manager at HG&CO Ltd, John Russell, CEO of ICEX Ltd and Mark Wraight, Global Network Director of Simarco International Ltd encouraged members to take action now as they develop their sustainability plans; one of the first steps is to collect data on different aspects of their business so they can demonstrate their progress in the future.  An example mentioned was the installation of a new roof where provision has been made to ensure it will be suitable for the addition of solar panels at a later date. 

Mark Wraight from Simarco explained the positive steps his company were taking to encourage staff to be part of a 5 year plan to meet their sustainability goals.  Learning and fun were key themes, e.g. a simple message about lighting relating it from the home environment to the workplace has been proven to be a useful way to communicate with staff – when you leave a room at home you switch the light off, then carry that forward to the office or factory: if you are the last person to leave a meeting room.   As companies submit tenders for contracts they are being asked: “what is your sustainability plan?”, this question will be asked more frequently by potential customers and a reliable considered response that can be proven will be essential.  Everyone will need to be prepared to meet potential customers’ requests and demands on sustainability, it will become a priority.

Members of the Essex Police Business Crime Team briefed members on their work in reducing a range of crimes including: violence in the retail sector, advice on recognizing signs of domestic abuse in the workplace, trafficking awareness and the offer of a free Cyber Clinic for local businesses.

Cllr Tom Cunningham spoke about Braintree District Council’s support for the local businesses and said they were keen to align the educational establishments with local employees’ needs.

WIW Bid Manager Adrian Cousins explained how the ongoing upgrade to security equipment and police liaison has helped to create an unappealing location for the criminal community, whilst the many other estate services provided by WIW have ensured it offers a welcoming and safe environment for the operating businesses and their staff.  Clair Tomalin, Office Administrator, reported an amazing increase in the reach and effectiveness of communications with members, highlighting the direct benefits this engagement has made in crime prevention and how it has enhanced the business support being offered to the numerous organisations across the estates.

Impressed with all he had heard Deputy Mayor of Witham, Cllr John Goodman said he hoped member businesses would take an active part in the consultations for the Witham Neighborhood Plan. 

Finishing off in delicious style ... a tradition of the December meetings held at Tiptree Patisserie is to enjoy fresh mince pies and exchange ideas for the year ahead - this year was no exception!