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Philip Evans


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COLYTON: New business group to improve online presence of local traders

Friday, 17 January 2014


THE?newly-established Colyton Business Group has got off to a successful start, with a well-attended first meeting and 28 members signing up.
The group is being led by Chris Way of CRW?Accountants Ltd. and Phil Johnson of PNS Ltd., who gave a presentation to about 30 local business proprietors at their first meeting at the Colcombe Castle last Thursday.
Mr Way reported that the presentation was well-received, with 28 individuals expressing interest in becoming members.
The presentation outlined the group’s aims as the following: promote all businesses in Colyton, Colyford, Southleigh, Shute and surrounding areas; provide mutual support for local businesses; link businesses to the community; make known the fact that Colyton has many services and businesses already here; work with the parish council and other organisations to create a business and scenic environment of an exceptional nature so that visiting Colyton will be a unique experience.
This could include developing the theme of the Colyton being the “most rebellious town in Devon” during the 17th century.
Mr Way explained that surveys show that more than 50 per cent of business is “sourced” or carried out online, but Colyton’s town website was not currently interactive.
He added: “What is needed is a way to provide potential visitors with the information they would expect to find out from a dynamic, comprehensive and regularly-updated website. If local people and potential visitors could know what is available and what is going on from a single web-source, that is likely to benefit the whole of the community in the long-run.”
Representatives of the East Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, speaking at the meeting, said they were supportive and keen to attract visitors inland to the “stunning and historical” towns and villages of East Devon, and they would back and assist the new business group.
A representative from the new Colyton People community website ( agreed that regularly-updated web-based information was essential in promoting and maintaining businesses. Mr Johnson added that it was possible for the new group and the Colyton People website to work together.
Mr Johnson also explained that to make things work in an efficient and cost effective manner, it was necessary to enable members to update the planned new website themselves, using their own security key to access their site.
This would enable "on the day" announcements and special offers, deals, etc. to be promoted. If members wished to, individual working groups could be set up to encourage such things as business social events, business presentations and seminars.
Mr Way and Mr Johnson will now progress matters, the structure of the group will be set up and all local businesses invited to join.
Those present thanked Mr Johnson for a very professional presentation and Mr Way and Mr Johnson thanked Tom Wills of the Colcombe Castle and all who had sent apologies or attended on such a cold night.
For more information, contact Mr Way on 01297 553286 or Mr Johnson on 07834 489 326.


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