Master Cutler backing entrepreneurs
New Master Cutler Gordon Bridge has called for an increased focus on encouraging entrepreneurship in the manufacturing heartlands of the Sheffield City Region.
Speaking immediately after his installation in the Cutlers' Hall, Mr Bridge said entrepreneurship had stalled as people had increasingly sought to be employed by someone else, rather than creating a living by using their own initiative. A void had opened up as the large and successful businesses created by 19th century entrepreneurs had shed labour, but, that void was now being filled by new companies, started by new entrepreneurs.
Those entrepreneurs were bringing new skills, products, innovations, technology and a culture of excellent service to manufacturing in the region, but there was more to be done.
"We need to build on that and encourage entrepreneurship and local initiatives to help the process," said Mr Bridge.
The skills and talents used by emerging businesses would ensure that Hallamshire – the historic region covered by the Cutlers' Company – would remain a centre of manufacturing excellence. That, in turn, would help to ensure the continuing prosperity of the region, said Mr Bridge, before going on to warn that: "As a nation, we don't take education seriously enough, particularly when compared to some of our competitor nations."
Mr Bridge praised initiatives like the BiG Idea contest, which offers potential entrepreneurs from Sheffield a share of a 100,000 cash prize.
tomorrow's Star Business Monthly for an interview with the new Master Cutler.