Women to the fore at business events

Gripple's Catherine King, left, and Emma Hibbert, right, with Angela Smith MP holding a Gripple wire joiner, pictured at the Women in Manufacturing event.
Gripple's Catherine King, left, and Emma Hibbert, right, with Angela Smith MP holding a Gripple wire joiner, pictured at the Women in Manufacturing event.
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The woman behind the UK’s first ‘social supermarket’ has been named as the headline speaker for a Yorkshire Institute of Directors event to mark International Women’s Day.

News that Sarah Dunwell, from the Barnsley-based Company Shop, will speak at the IoD event came as two women from a leading Sheffield innovator joined others to launch a new initiative to build and sustain the pool of female talent in engineering and manufacturing.

Emma Hibbert and Catherine King, from wire joining and tensioning systems manufacturer Gripple, travelled to the House of Commons for the launch of Women in Manufacturing after being nominated to attend by managing director Ian Farquhar.

Emma, the company’s internal sales manager, said: “This is an essential and much-needed initiative.

“Women make a valuable contribution towards manufacturing and engineering by introducing a totally different perspective to a business.”

The launch of Women in Manufacturing had a strong Sheffield flavour.

The initiative is the brainchild of the training and skills arm of the Chapeltown-based British Glass Manufacturers’ Confederation, and Penistone and Stocksbridge Labour MP Angela Smith is one of Women in Manufacturing’s regional champions.

The IoD Yorkshire’s International Women’s Day event will be hosted by DLA Piper at its offices in Sheffield on Friday March 7, from 10am to 5pm.

Ketnote speaker Sarah Dunwell has spearheaded the development of the Community Shop - the first in what could be a chain of stores where food that is surplus, close to its use-by date or simply mislabeled is sold at very low prices to people facing poverty.

She will speak alongside the head of science at Sheffield High School, Kathryn Boulton Pratt, who won a Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) award for the way she inspires teenage girls in particular to consider careers in science.

For more information on the International Women’s Day event ring 0113 243 0152.