Wednesday, 30 April 2014

The history of Chesterfield is every bit as important as its future

I am always amazed that the town still has surprises to reveal to me. Most recently it has been the discovery of the organisation that puts the Blue Plaques on many of our historic buildings. – Chesterfield and District Civic Society.

The latest plaque was unveiled at Chesterfield Market Hall, a fitting culmination of the investment and refurbishment that was completed there last year. Like the Market Hall, there are many buildings in Chesterfield that we probably drive or walk past every day. They blend into the fabric of the town but actually held create our town’s landscape as we know it today.

Chesterfield is steeped in history. We are well-known for our crooked spire but how many of us know it for being the resting place of the ‘Father of the Railways’ - George Stephenson?

The history of Chesterfield is every bit as important as its future and we are working hard to ensure a sustainable one for the town and everyone who lives here. That’s why it’s important to create opportunity for companies to invest here. Companies that choose to invest here bring jobs with them and employment opportunities for the next generation.

An excellent example of this is Chesterfield’s food and drink industry. In recent years the wealth and variety of eating and drinking establishments has increased. Where once we might have travelled out of town to a good restaurant, we now have a multitude on our doorstep.

I am delighted, therefore, to announce that the Chesterfield Food and Drink Awards – which recognise this thriving sector - will be taking place both this year and next having secured sponsorship from Chesterfield College until 2015.

Last year the College was the headline sponsor of the inaugural awards and took a very active role in the awards ceremony. Not only was the ceremony hosted at the college’s Heartspace building, but the students catered for the event.

The award ceremony gives Chesterfield College Hospitality and Catering students an opportunity to be involved in a real professional and prestigious event, which supports the development of their commercial and industry relevant skills. The awards also provide fantastic opportunities for Chesterfield College students to showcase their high level professional skills and experience different aspects of the industry and to also be involved in the planning, preparation and delivery of a high profile regional event where employers have the opportunity to meet future employees.

Watch this space. In the same way Chesterfield College may produce the next Michelin starred chef, the town’s developments of today like Chesterfield Waterside and Casa Hotel could be the blue plaque bearers of the future.

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