Monthly Archives: 11:44 AM

Companies help school students get on their bikes

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Youngsters from a Flintshire school enjoyed a morning on two wheels at one of the country’s top mountain bike centres thanks to a partnership between two award-winning companies.

Builders Anwyl Construction and leading social housing provider Wales & West Housing teamed up to give Year 10 students from Hawarden High School a fun day out at One Planet Adventure at Llandegla.

Anwyl, based at St David’s Park, Ewloe, are building a new North Wales headquarters for Wales & West Housing next door and the two firms have formed a close relationship with nearby Hawarden High School.

As part of that partnership they asked Year 10 Welsh Baccalaureate students from the school to come up with some ‘green’ transport solutions for the companies and their workforces.

One Planet Adventure opened specially for the students who enjoyed tackling some of the bike trails and the walks through the woods and moorland.

Osian Jones, the school’s Welsh Bacc Co-ordinator, said: “It’s been part of our Welsh Bacc challenge and through our partnership with Anwyl and Wales & West who are both relocating to Ewloe.

“It’s a way of building relationships with local companies and to help them by coming up with ways of reducing congestion which has been a long-standing issue in the area.

“It’s a new course for Year 10 this year but they’ve reacted very well and it’s been superb to have this partnership with Anwyl and Wales & West Housing and the 13 students we’ve brought have had a brilliant time and really enjoyed themselves.”

Shayne Hembrow, Deputy Chief Executive of Wales & West Housing and a keen mountain biker himself, said: “Anwyl are building our new offices and part of our motivation is about creating more sustainable transport options.

“We have a ‘green’ transport plan for our headquarters in Cardiff and we want to develop something similar here and together with Anwyl we came up with the idea of a competition for the school.

“They have come up with some very different and innovative ideas along with some great drawings and designs and the students here today were the winners who came up with ideas that could benefit us.”

Tom Anwyl, Anwyl Construction Director, said: “We like to engage with young people as part of our social commitment and also because it may well inspire some of them to make their careers in construction.

“We have also formed an excellent relationship with Hawarden High School and we were very impressed with the range of ideas and suggestions they came up with.”

Among those who tackled the mountain bike trails was Oliver Westbrook, aged 15, from Hawarden, who said: “It went really well. We done the orange and blue trails and they’ve been good.

“I’ve ridden mountain bikes before and I’d definitely come here again.”

David Smith, 15, also from Hawarden, added: “It’s been great. I have ridden mountain bikes before but nothing like this and I’d love to do it again.”

Expansion plans launched by top financial firm

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A leading North Wales financial firm has launched an expansion scheme by taking over a Shropshire-based business.

Bosses at Wrexham-based Hadlow Edwards Wealth Management say the new acquisition will increase the number of their clients by 550 to more than 2,000.

The takeover of Ellett Wealth Management, in Oswestry, is part of a long-term Hadlow Edwards strategy to grow their already successful business which employs an 11-strong team with seven specialist financial advisors.

Shropshire has been a key target geographically for the company and establishing a better presence in the area has the potential to also open up a mid-Wales market for the firm.

Ellett Wealth Management and Hadlow Edwards are both Practices in the FTSE 100 Company St. James’s Place which is one of the UK’s largest wealth management organisations and looks after client funds in excess of £58 bn.

Ellett Wealth Management was set up by Howard Ellett, 58, of Craigllwyn, a father-of-two and grandfather-of-two, who is taking semi-retirement.

He will continue to work part-time with Hadlow Edwards as a mentor for junior members of their team and to achieve a seamless transition for his clients, many of whom he has worked with for the entirety of his three decades in the financial services industry.

Medwyn Edwards, Hadlow Edwards Director, said: “This new and exciting development for Hadlow Edwards brings in a very experienced existing St. James’s Place Partner to the fold.

“We have a lot of ambition to expand our company and we looked at buying external financial business services. But we thought Howard’s client mix and location along with the long-standing and well-thought of relationship he had with his existing clients was a fantastic fit for our business and we are delighted to bring this deal to fruition.

“It has allowed us to expand with little risk to our business and our existing clients and we believe this move will act as a springboard to the future development of Hadlow Edwards which is high on the agenda in our long-term plans.”

Mr Edwards added: “Howard’s input will be valuable on more than one level. There is the business it will bring in for Hadlow Edwards, including in the Shropshire area, and the support Howard will give the young advisers here to develop their own knowledge and client management skills for the future.

“There is also important synergy between Hadlow Edwards and Howard’s company. Both businesses operate with the same ethos of client care and utmost professionalism. Our aim is always to listen to our clients and build a very personal and long-term relationship with them.”

Hadlow Edwards, founded and run by joint directors Medwyn Edwards and Warren Hadlow, offers high quality personal advice on many aspects of wealth management, to both individuals and businesses from all different backgrounds and ages with varied financial requirements.

Mr Ellett, who specialises in inheritance tax, investment planning and trusts, became a financial services advisor in 1987 and has since successfully grown his business to represent households across Shropshire, North Wales and Cheshire.

He said: “This is an exciting change for me and I am really looking forward to it. While I am selling the business to Hadlow Edwards, I am pleased to continue working with them on a part time basis.

“I have known Medwyn and Warren for 15 years and what has reassured me about selling my business to them is that I know they operate and look after their clients in a very similar way to me. It’s a perfect match.

“I have worked with some of my clients since 1988 and so it was vital, absolutely fundamental to me that whoever I sold the business to would have the same client care and ethos as I have.

“It’s all about regular contact, it’s being able to help out at short notice if a pressing issue arises, it’s if a client is at a crossroad in their life and they need good advice, then I have always made a point of providing that.

“A client’s situation and circumstances changes, be it marriage, divorce, having a family, retiring, inheriting money. As an advisor, you have to take very seriously the fact you are delving into their most personal of affairs. It is our role to help them adjust to those changes in the best way possible and it is a relationship which develops through trust.

“I know I can trust Hadlow Edwards to offer the same level of care and so by selling my business to them I know there will be continuity for my clients.

“Not only that, but it will also offer them longevity because Hadlow Edwards has good succession planning built in. There is a terrific team of young and up and coming advisors who will be able to continue to offer this same level of client care far on into the future.”