Lancashire manufacturers can have a successful 2020, says business chief

Lancashire manufacturers can carry on their bright start to 2020 and thrive for the rest of the year, a business leader has said.

Dawn Cheetham, Director of Blackpool-based Commercial Kitchen Services (CKS), said manufacturers were feeling more confident with stability around Britain’s exit from the European Union.

The latest IHS Markit/CIPS manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index rose to a nine-month high during January with business confidence and new orders performing strongly.

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CKS is sponsoring the Manufacturer of the Year category at this year’s Be Inspired Business Awards, The BIBAs, which is open for applications.

Dawn Cheetham said: “The manufacturing sector is an engine for the Lancashire economy, so to see manufacturers reporting confidence at the start of the year is great.

“We all know that the real hard work begins now on Brexit negotiations, but to have some stability around the situation is a real plus.

“The sector will continue to work hard to help us all prosper, and it is up to our policy-makers at all levels to do their part to support them every step of the way.”

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The BIBAs has already received more than 150 applications from businesses across Lancashire with 20 awards up for grabs this year.

The categories cover all sectors and sizes of businesses with awards including Engineering Business of the Year, Construction Business of the Year and the headline prize, Business of the Year.

A spokesman for the awards’ organisers, the North & Western Lancashire Chamber of Commerce, said: “We advise all businesses to look at entering more than one category and with 20 up for grabs, there is something for everyone at the BIBAs."

In 2019, the BIBAs’ lifetime achievement award, Lancastrian of the Year, was given to business leader Ann Dean