Business leaders and entrepreneurs gathered at a special conference to learn about the benefits of investing in Richmond.

More than 130 guests, including company directors and founders of successful businesses in the borough, attended the Inward Investment event, sponsored by the Richmond and Twickenham Times, at the Lensbury Club, Teddington.

Richmond Council spent eight months carrying out research before launching a new website and information packs at the event on Thursday, November 18, which chambers of commerce, investment agencies and traders’ networks will be able to use for reference.

The authority has begun a new drive to build partnerships with businesses to strengthen the borough’s economy and to encourage businesses from other parts of the country and abroad to invest in Richmond.

Council leader Nicholas True, a former businessman, told the conference: “It is the private sector that is going to drag the country out of the hole it has got into, and I am extremely conscious councils can do many things to help business, but they can also get in the way. If there are silly rules that hinder businesses, they will disappear.”

Councillor Pamela Fleming, cabinet member for communities at Richmond Council, said: “The trading environment here is very appealing – there is good access to markets, skills and talent, as well as strong transport links into and out of London.

“These all benefit employers, while our high standard of cultural entertainment, world-class attractions and first-rate primary schools are high on the priority list for workers.”

Dene Stuart, regional sales manager of Newsquest, the owner of the Richmond and Twickenham Times, said the organisation fully supported the council’s mission to boost business.

He said: “What is going on in Richmond is unique. There is no other borough doing this – a dynamic chamber of commerce, the council and businesses all working together in a way I am not seeing in any other part of London.”

Coun True said he welcomed the Richmond and Twickenham Times’ new business supplement.

He said: “I believe local newspapers are at the core of the community and I think it’s marvellous Newsquest is investing in a new business supplement. It’s a statement of its interest in our borough and in business.”

Visit the authority’s new business website at