West Suffolk: trailblazer initiative to boost recycling

West Suffolk has become the first council in the country to get behind an initiative to increase recycling and support local businesses.

The council has teamed up with Love Newmarket Business Improvement District (BID), The Guineas Shopping Centre, Abbeycroft Leisure, Eastern Education Group, Our Bury St Edmunds BID and Trovr to deliver four reverse vending machines; two in Newmarket and two in Bury St Edmunds. Trovr uses a smartphone app to incentivise recycling through points-based rewards which can then be spent in local businesses. The goal is to increase recycling rates and reduce litter.

The new reverse recycling machines can be found outside The Guineas Shopping Centre, Newmarket Leisure Centre, and West Suffolk College, Bury St Edmunds. A fourth machine will be installed in Bury St Edmunds town centre once a site has been secured.

West Suffolk Council has invested £3,000 towards the six-month trial, with further funding secured from both the Newmarket and Bury St Edmunds BIDs. The Guineas, Abbeycroft and Eastern Education Group are contributing ‘in-kind’ by providing locations, power, as well as the responsibility for cleaning and emptying the machines.

Newmarket and Bury St Edmunds are the first towns to trial the machines, if successful there is the possibility that the machines will be trialled across more of West Suffolk.

The UK government has announced that from 2025, a Deposit Return Scheme is to be introduced across England, Wales and Northern Ireland. By working with Trovr, West Suffolk residents will be ahead of the curve in using such a scheme.

There will be a launch event at The Guineas Shopping Centre on Friday 9 February from 12 – 2pm, to promote the scheme and engage with members of the public to explain and show them how the machines and app work.

Cllr Cliff Waterman, Leader of West Suffolk Council said, "West Suffolk is pioneering as the first council in England to implement this unique project. It is brilliant that, in collaboration with partners, we have successfully introduced these machines to West Suffolk. The project puts West Suffolk at the forefront of environmental innovation and is just one part of the work we're doing to tackle the climate crisis.

“It encourages greater recycling by our residents which can only be positive in terms of reducing waste and boosting our environmental resilience. And by rewarding residents with money off to spend at local businesses, this will also support the gradual and sustainable growth of our local economy."

Natalie Robinson, Manager of Love Newmarket BID said, “Love Newmarket BID are thrilled to be part of this initiative which will raise awareness of the importance of sustainability in our town, whilst also supporting our businesses with increased footfall opportunities.”

Ross McKittrick, Centre Manager for The Guineas Shopping Centre said, “As the manager of Guineas Shopping Centre, I'm truly exhilarated to embark on this groundbreaking journey with Trovr's Reverse Vending Machine trial. Our commitment to sustainability is paramount, and this partnership represents a significant step forward in our efforts to encourage recycling within our community. Together, we're pioneering innovative solutions to reduce waste and protect our environment for future generations.

“Through the Trovr Rewards app, we're proud to give back to our community in meaningful ways. Every interaction with the app not only fosters sustainable habits but also unlocks rewards that benefit consumers and businesses.”

Warren Smyth, Chief Executive Officer of Abbeycroft Leisure said, “Abbeycroft are really pleased to be involved in this project that supports recycling in such an innovative way.  It is great to be working with a range of partners with similar interests to bring this opportunity to West Suffolk and we hope our customers and visitors maximise the use of the machines.”

A spokesperson for the Eastern Education Group said, “We are delighted to be part of this new recycling initiative. Our mission is to work collaboratively to adopt and speed up sustainability across all our colleges and campuses.

“Therefore, it’s great that we are one of only four sites in the UK to pilot this revolutionary new reverse vending machine scheme. It will help engage our students to continue to join us on our sustainable journey.”

Nick Yeatman, Chief Executive Officer of Trovr said, “As champions of innovation and environmental responsibility, Trovr is thrilled to partner with West Suffolk Council in launching a visionary rewards-for-recycling trial. This initiative serves a dual purpose—preparing the local community for the upcoming National Deposit Return scheme and pushing the boundaries of recycling of single use drink containers with digital rewards. By combining technology with environmental consciousness, we aim to inspire meaningful change and create a blueprint for the future of recycling.

“This trial not only reflects our commitment to sustainability but also positions us at the forefront of the digital evolution within the recycling industry. Together with the local council, we are shaping a more sustainable and connected community.”

Love Newmarket and Newmarket Town Council launch Shop Front Improvement Grant Scheme

Love Newmarket BID (Business Improvement District) and Newmarket Town Council have come together to launch a new scheme, designed to inject some life and love in to our town through a Shop Front Improvement Grant Scheme.

Open for applications from Monday 15th January 2024, the scheme has a fund total of £18,750 waiting to be awarded to our local businesses, an amount that is part funded by a grant from West Suffolk Council through the Government’s UK Shared Prosperity Fund.

Grants are available to improve the look of a shopfront, and will cover up to 50% of the works up to £2000 per business.

Open to all businesses on the High Street and adjoining streets, the Scheme looks to help rejuvenate the town making it a more attractive place to visit, live and work. Grants can be used towards shop painting, replacing signage or even replacing an entire shopfront.

Commenting on the Scheme, Love Newmarket BID Manager Natalie Robinson said: “We’ve fought hard to secure this funding for our businesses and hope that many will take advantage of the opportunities now open to them. The Shop Front Improvement Grant Scheme is here to help businesses improve their premises, whilst making the town more attractive to visitors, residents and potential new business ventures.

“This scheme has always had a lot of appetite from local businesses, and we’ve seen some fantastic renovations taking place in previous years. We hope that this will be the case for 2024 and we look forward to receiving applications from today.

“We will also showcase the works carried out on our social channels from all successful applicants.”

Working together with Newmarket Town Council, this joint venture provides a fantastic level of support for all local business owners/ operators and is open to non-BID members and BID members alike.

To apply for the scheme please visit www.lovenewmarket.co.uk to complete the online application. Applications will open on Monday 15th January 2024 and will close at midnight on Sunday 12th February. Successful applicants will be notified from the week commencing Monday 26th February 2024.

Tylers win award at The ESTAS, the most prestigious awards in the UK property sector

The Cambridge, Histon, Willingham & Newmarket based agency Tylers received the Gold award for both Landlord and Tenant in Cambridge, Best in postcode for CB1, CB24 & CB8 and Best local estate agency group by region for the East of England awards at the prestigious ESTAS Customer Service Awards 2023 sponsored by Coadjute, the biggest awards in the UK property industry. The winners were announced at the largest event in the property industry at the Grosvenor House in London and hosted by the country’s favourite TV property presenter Phil Spencer in front of 1,000 guests.

The awards, which this year celebrated their 20th birthday, power the ESTAS own customer review platform which recognises the best estate and letting agents for customer service based on ratings from clients who have been through the whole moving experience with an agent. This year’s results were calculated from over 300,000 customer review ratings.

Phil Spencer, who has hosted The ESTAS every year since their inception in 2003 addressed the live audience “Everyone one shortlisted here today has attained the ESTAS Standard of Excellence which is based purely on service ratings from customers at the end of the moving experience, giving a highly accurate overview of the standard of service that’s been delivered to the end client. This is a great achievement in its own right so whatever unfolds this afternoon you should all be immensely proud.”

Estate and letting agents were recognised in regions and post codes around the UK.  National Grand Prix Awards were also announced for the Best Single Agent Office in sales and lettings.

Ben Marley, Commercial Director at The ESTAS said “When we started we wanted to create a set of property awards which were completely pure, where winners were selected solely on customer service ratings from actual transactions. Two million reviews and 20 years later ESTAS is now the customer review platform of choice for property professionals and the most prestigious award an agent, a conveyancer, mortgage broker or supplier can win in the property industry.”

Dan Salmons, CEO at headline partner Coadjute said “On behalf of the Coadjute team, warm congratulations to all the winners this year at The ESTAS. We were delighted to see so many outstanding achievements recognised across the industry from everyone involved. It has been a real pleasure to support The ESTAS this year.”

Alistair Brown, Director of Tylers said “We are absolutely thrilled to be recognised in this year’s ESTAS. It means so much to us as we know it’s our customers who have judged our performance.  We take our levels of customer service very seriously because we know clients have a choice.  We have always been very proud of the personal service and this proves we are delivering what we promise.”

Our Local Heroes

We're pleased to announce that this year's Christmas Lights will be turned on by our local heroes, Paula Roberts and Michael Bonham 😀
Nominated through an online search, Paula is a well-known figure in the racing industry spending many years working for the trainer Sir Michael Stoute. This remarkable lady has shown courage in adversity with her continuing fight against Cancer and, in spite of health issues, she is both passionate and influential in her commitment to Newmarket Allotment Association and in particular the Field Terrace Road site.
Managed solely by Paula she has continued to make gardening accessible to all members of the community. Supporting and encouraging both regular and newcomers alike she gives her wealth of knowledge freely and with a smile. Dependable, reliable, inspirational and a friend to many, she can be truly called a Local Hero. 
Michael, who also received his nomination through the online voting campaign, has been championed for his commitment to the local community through his business, Driving Miss Daisy. Helping the older generation gain independence and support, Michael also aids disabled family members on medical appointments and getting SEN children to school.
He was nominated for this commitment, which despite his own serious health concerns and conditions of late, continues to shine. He wants his legacy to be that his customers are able to live more fulfilling lives through using the Driving Miss Daisy service. He is thrilled to have been chosen & it'll be another cherished memory for his 8 grandchildren.
Join us at 7pm on Friday 17th November to see these two heroes press the button and mark the start of the festive season here in Newmarket. For more details please click here.

Butterflies Fly Away To New Homes

Two good causes have been given a boost after an online auction of our colour butterflies which brightened the streets of Newmarket during the summer raised £1071.50.

The silent auction saw all 16 butterflies fly away to new homes, some of them raising £100.

They have gone to variety of new homes, including local businesses and one to the town council to put in the Memorial Gardens.

The money will be shared between the Newmarket Charitable Foundation, which helps fund many local good causes, and the Children's Cancer and Leukaemia Group to be used in research in the name of four-year-old George Ratcliffe, from Isleham, who bravely went through months of treatment in his battle against a rare form of cancer.

Halloween In Newmarket

Joining forces with Newmarket Town Council and Discover Newmarket, we bring you a ghoulish line up of this year's Halloween events taking place in our town:

Monday 23rd- Friday 27thOctober - Halloween Scavenger Hunt in the Memorial Gardens

Hunt around the gardens for 10 hidden clues to claim your prize! The hunt takes place every day between 9am - 5pm. Collect your prize from the King Edward VII Memorial Hall. Children must be supervised at all times.

Tuesday 24thOctober - Spooky Halloween event in the Guineas

Enjoy comedy shows from Bread & Butter's Zombie Disco, taking place at 10.30am, 12pm & 1.45pm. There will also be fancy dress competitions, a chance to meet The Emerald Witches, free craft workshops and treasure trails.

Wednesday 25th October - Halloween Crafts at the NHRM

Join the team at the National Horseracing Museum for a family friendly Halloween themed creative workshop in the Alborada Rooms. Decorate a bag for trick or treating and get creative with the art cart and make spooky decorations! No need to book!

Friday 27thOctober - Fright Night at the NHRM

Halloween at the Museum just got spookier! Dress to scare and find clues in the magnificent grounds of Palace House. Meet magical owls and take part in some fang-tastic crafts. Don’t forget to take a selfie snap at the stocks but watch out for the Headless Horseman…

Activities include:

Time: 5-7pm
Price: £6 adults, £3 children (under 5s free)
Book here: www.nhrm.co.uk/events/family-fright-night-2/