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Why post-pandemic the entire business community needs to reevaluate what’s important

by Ross Feeney, CEO of Tunbridge Wells Together

We’ve all been separated from our loved ones for almost a year, give or take the odd socially distanced walk. Post-pandemic, most of us will be reunited, but unfortunately the same cannot be as easily said for all UK firms. 

As CEO of Tunbridge Wells Together, the BID for the town’s local businesses, says we must stay positive and resilient.

Tunbridge Wells, as a town, has more chances than most to return swiftly to business. Despite national retail and hospitality concerns, I have faith that we can ride this out and demonstrate the resilience that has made Tunbridge Wells one of the longest success stories in the UK.

We are home to a unique mix of heritage and modernity, open spaces and wellness, independents and corporates. Home to thriving financial, creative and professional service industries, supported by a vibrant community. Home to one of the country’s best talent pools, accelerated by the area’s superlative educational facilities and transport links. Home to an in demand property market, where former commuters look to live, work and play local.

Now is the opportunity to capitalise on the infrastructure already in place here in Tunbridge Wells. We have a lower than average empty retail ratio but we believe this can be converted to office space or flexible hot-desks, which can support the thousands of small local businesses set up pre, during and no doubt post-pandemic.

We firmly believe, that we can attract corporates who are realising they need more satellite space outside of London, because what matters now is proximity to family, friends and mental wellbeing. We also have a huge amount of London commuters already here – some of the best in finance, property, insurance and science, to name just a few sectors.

With corporates like KPMG shedding London space, we want Tunbridge Wells to be the top pick. It’s taken a global pandemic for some to realise that wellbeing and locality is key to productivity. Well we are here, ready and waiting, to supply the best that work and life have to offer.

Joining up with Tunbridge Wells Borough Council and Locate In Kent, we have launched the #TWWorks campaign which aims to attract corporates to the town. We are inviting developers to build London-standard flexible office space and reassuring commuters and local businesses that they can work locally with the right support and space, outside of, but close to, the family home.

Many corporates in TW are already fully behind us and we want others to be too. Join AXA Health, Cripps Pemberton Greenish, Childrensalon, Dandara, Logistics UK, Markerstudy, Southpaw and Thomson Snell & Passmore to help us elevate Tunbridge Wells as a brilliant business destination, ripe for all those companies looking to put their talent and their families first, because in 2021 this will be the key to productivity and long term success.

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