It’s made up of a cross-section of the business community and provides advice and guidance on particular areas of expertise, help support local business and provides a link to a wider network of business groups and associations.
Toby Bridges is an experienced company director and has been CEO and now Chairs his fourth generation family company, NBT Group Ltd. NBT was the North East’s fastest growing company in 2018 & 2019 and Toby was the Entrepreneurs’ Forum Scale-up Entrepreneur of the year 2019/20.
He has started and sold a number of other companies and Chairs the charity the Exchange, a community theatre in North Shields Toby mentors numerous businesses across the NE, on behalf of the Entrepreneurs’ Forum, the NE LEP, and The Natwest Accelerator.
Advisory Board – Scale up North East
North East LEP Business Growth Board
Advisory board to the Leo’s high growth programme
Toby also represents North Tyneside businesses at local authority Cabinet meetings.
Karen brings to the role a wealth of experience having already served as Vice Chair for three years and as a member of the management committee since the Forum was founded a decade ago. Her expertise in retail spans 35 years and her previous position as Chair of the Whitley Bay Chamber of Trade brought her to the Forum as a founder member representing town centres. She has also had specific responsibility for communications and events which have included a leading role in the organisation of the prestigious annual North Tyneside Business Forum Awards.
Professionally, she has owned retail outlets in Whitley Bay and now runs two businesses, “Made to Treasure Events”, a bespoke wedding stationery and events management company and her own business consultancy, “Your Business Pilot,” supporting SME’s and start ups.
Karen also represents North Tyneside businesses at local authority Cabinet meetings.
Your Business Pilot
North Tyneside Strategic Partnership
Covid-19 Engagement Board
Town Centre Task Group
North East England Chamber of Commerce
North of Tyne Combined Authority (working groups)
State of the Area Committee
MINT Business Club Steering Group
Andrew is a leading North East industrialist who has achieved regional and national recognition for his leadership of North East manufacturing businesses.
Now operating in an advisory and non-executive capacity, Andrew is a director and co-founder of two new Tech businesses.
Andrew is currently Chair of the make UK NE Regional Advisory Board. He is a Chartered Engineer and a Fellow of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers.
Make UK NE Regional Advisory Board
Make UK National Membership Board
Newcastle College – Director of Industrial Strategy
David is both a chartered accountant and chartered banker with over 40 years experience advising and representing a wide variety of North Tyneside businesses and not-for-profit organisations.
Over the past two decades David has been involved in numerous local voluntary, community and educational organisations including YMCA North Tyneside, Cullercoats National Lifeboat Institution and New Hope for Children.
David also represents North Tyneside businesses at local authority Cabinet meetings.
Read Milburn & Co
Amy started her role at North Tyneside Council as a Social Media Marketing Apprentice in Sept 2014.
Amy has been involved in many projects including The Business Factory and Invest North Tyneside. After securing a position following the completion of her apprenticeship, Amy is now responsible for delivering North Tyneside Business Forum activity programme and marketing.
Over the 5 years in the role, she has successfully delivered Business Awards ceremonies, numerous events for the Forum and has implemented a range of projects.”
North Tyneside Council
North East England Chamber of Commerce
NE Growth Hub Provider Network Steering Group
Michael is self-employed web designer, web developer and SEO specialist. He works with other small businesses to get results from their web presence. He uses his skills and experience to help whenever he can with the management group, and works closely with local businesses to support and develop them while spreading the word about the North Tyneside Business Forum.
NE1 Web Design
Michael has worked in the IT industry for over a decade, providing support for software development and web applications. Active in the community, Michael has played a supporting role for both local organisations and for local and national governing bodies. He is a Digital Specialist who focus on building scalable software empowering customer growth, automation, and efficiency.
David Bavaird, a director of North Shields-based Engaging Pathways, has worked in finance, logistics and project management for over 20 years and brings a wealth of experience to the role.
He is also the former-chair of North Shields Chamber of Trade and Commerce,and sits on a number of boards of education and third sector organisations.
Coastal Communities Team
North Tyneside Learning Trust
Armed Forces Group
David also represents North Tyneside businesses at local authority Cabinet meetings
Pat is a woman who has worked in the manufacturing industry for over 25 years, in North Tyneside, Rotational Engineering employs local people in specialist tool making and sheet metal fabrications.
Pat says “During times of economic uncertainty I feel that it is essential to maintain a very good level of communication with the business community. By being part of the Business Forum this helps us keep up to date with the ever changing business trends, having like-minded individuals to meet with and discuss not only our personal barriers but those wider afield is fantastic. We feel we are able to take advice from those who have the experience and connections to put us in touch with the relevant individuals/events that will not only benefit the business but hopefully the local community.”
British Plastics Federation
North East England Chamber of Commerce
Kathryn is joint owner of Nicholson’s the Butchers in Whitley Bay a fourth-generation business, established in 1914 and still trade from the same premises we had back then.
Kathryn is also vice chair of the Q Guild of Butchers and a member of The Alternative Board (TAB). The membership of TAB helps her keep a finger on the pulse of business in general and is a good sounding board made up of other business owners for coming up with new ways to grow and improve businesses.
Keith spends his working life alongside volunteers, charitable organisations and members of the local business community.
Keith says: “I play to my experiential strengths by representing the Voluntary and Community Sector (VCS) on the management team. I’ll be working alongside organisations that fall into that category and representing them in the planning and management of the Business Forum.”
Having worked in sales in the past, Sangeeta set up her current business on Park View in Whitley Bay in December 2018 to follow her passion for cooking and North Indian cuisine. Since then, Sangeeta and her business have become involved in the local business community.
Sangeeta is also a member of the Mussel Group, the Federation of Small Businesses and the Chamber of Trade.
“I’m hoping that my role on the management team will lead to helping other small businesses. I’ll be attending the meetings the Forum puts on for members. I’m really looking forward to learning more about the other member businesses and helping them to thrive and succeed in North Tyneside.
I’ll use my experience from my sales background as well as the knowledge I’ve gained since opening a hospitality business to help and advise other businesses.“
Namaste – Taste of India
If you’re not yet a member, you can sign up here.