Our company has been active in Coventry and Warwickshire for 80 years – and during that time the city and the county have gone through fluctuating fortunes.
But, fittingly for an area associated with the image of the Phoenix, Coventry and Warwickshire has risen in recent years and, viewed with the perspective of eight decades, appears to be performing well.
Economically we are the home to a myriad of successful companies and certainly our advanced manufacturing and engineering firms – many involved in automotive – are leading the way.
That has been fuelled by several factors. Clearly expanding markets have played a part, but I also know as a Jaguar owner of many years – that they have upped their game in terms of design, engineering and build quality and that Jaguar Land Rover is now a global brand.
With Aston Martin, Geely, BMW and Horiba MIRA – and many of their supply chain – also in Coventry and Warwickshire, we are undoubtedly a global force in that sector.
One continual problem has been Coventry city centre. Everyone recognises that we punch well below our economic weight when it comes to our retail and leisure offer. That has been the case for years and the gulf between our size and our retail performance has not narrowed.
That means there is a great deal resting on several schemes which are, relatively speaking, still in their infancy.
The City Centre South scheme, which the council recently awarded to Shearer Property Group, is massively significant as it represents a wholesale opportunity to transform a major part of the city centre. It is ambitious, but, it could be argued, we have lacked that in the past when it has come to the city centre.
It was also heartening to see the West Midlands Combined Authority making such a significant award to ensure the scheme can happen.
In an age where communication is vitally important, I also see the improvements to the railway station as key. I don’t believe anyone fully knows how HS2 will impact on Coventry and Warwickshire but we have to make sure we have the best transport infrastructure possible.
That would mean one of two things – that we are best placed to take full advantage of HS2 but also that we are geared up to avoid being, in any way, shunted into the sidings.
Our universities have really driven development in recent years, and research and development is one of our very strong areas so it essential that work continues through the alliance of academia and industry and through the creation and expansion of science parks.
It will inevitably need future employment land allocation – and that has to be addressed, and quickly.
In fact, one dark cloud over this optimism and opportunity is our shortage of development land. It is a major issue that will, if not resolved, throttle our potential. The CWLEP, Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce and the local authorities are well aware of the problem, but awareness and a solution are two different things.
The region has been brave in some of the decisions it has taken in recent years and, on this issue, it must be bold once again.
220 riders took part in the charity cycle ride on Sunday 19th February 2017 to raise funds for Zoë’s Place Baby Hospice, based in Ash Green.
Starting at Deeley Group’s head office, two routes were available to the cyclists, a 30 mile or more challenging 59 mile route.
A fantastic £2,300 was raised which is a record for Coventry Road Club and their charity cycle rides.
Zoë’s Place Baby Hospice needs to raise £1.3 million every year to care for babies and infants with life-limiting and life-threatening conditions from across Coventry and Warwickshire and relies heavily on fundraising events to support them.
Deeley Group’s Edward Hudson and Adam Dent from the group’s PR Agency, Advent Communications, both took part in the charity cycle ride.
Edward Hudson, Business Development Coordinator, at Deeley Group said “After hearing the cycle club lost their previous event venue, we were of course happy to step in to help. Our facilities were the ideal location for the rides to start, being so close to the Countryside and large enough to cater for the volume of people taking part.”
“We are delighted that Coventry Road Club and Zoë’s Place Baby Hospice raised this amount and that all of their hard work paid off.”
The date for Deeley Group’s own charity cycle ride, the ‘Deeley 80’ and ‘Family 20’ has already been set for Sunday 17th September 2017.
Matt Parry has joined Deeley Properties as development manager and will be scouring the UK for new opportunities and sites for the company.
Matt, formerly of King Sturge and RPS, has moved to the company from Cranford Developments in Staffordshire.
He had been with Cranford for 11 years but jumped at the opportunity of joining the expanding team at Deeley Group, which celebrated its 80th anniversary in 2016.
Matt, who lives in Bromsgrove, Worcestershire, said: “Deeley Properties has a fantastic reputation in the region as a company that undertakes development in the right way.
“The company is looking to grow and that is where I come in. I believe there are some great opportunities but you have to get out there, get in front of people and grab those opportunities with both hands.
“I will be looking at residential, commercial and mixed-use opportunities in the Midlands and beyond.”
Peter Deeley, managing director of the Deeley Group, said: “We are very pleased to have Matt on board.
“We believe the market is showing strength and that is why we wanted to grow the development team.
“What we have shown over many, many years is that we will work in partnership with a range of other organisations to ensure we deliver development that brings value and social benefits to an area.”
Pictured (left to right): Peter Hartill, Pat Moroney, Andrew Brazier, Andrew Cann and Peter Deeley welcome Matt Parry (seated)
Deeley Construction has hit a high point on a scheme in Stratford-upon-Avon that is being created on behalf of Orbit.
Fordham House is a new development of 82 private rent apartments on the corner of Birmingham Road and Clopton Road, with initial preference to key workers in the town.
The development is a partnership between Stratford Town Trust, Orbit, ABD Developments and Robothams Architects. Deeley Construction is the design and build contractor.
A topping out ceremony was held at the development, which is on the site of a vacant office building that was demolished to allow work to proceed, to mark the highest point in the build being reached.
Justin Williams, of Stratford Town Trust, and Adam Cooper, of Orbit, joined Peter Deeley and site manager Richard Pepper on the roof of the scheme before other visitors. Other guests were shown around the one and two-bed apartments which are undergoing the ‘first fix’ of electrical and mechanical services.
Peter Deeley said: “We are delighted with the way work is progressing and the topping out ceremony marks an important milestone in the build.
“Richard and the team are doing a great job, and Justin and Adam were both pleased with the way the development is coming along.”
Nearly 250,000 bricks and blocks have been used to complete the scheme. Local school pupil Isabella, aged six, guessed the correct amount in a competition prior to Christmas winning an iPad for her and family.
Pictured (left to right): Peter Deeley, Adam Cooper, Justin Williams, Richard Pepper
Coventry Irish Society has received a £60,000 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) for an Oral History Project documenting the contribution of the Irish community to the city of Coventry.
The project, which will run for 18 months, focuses on Irish migrants that arrived in the city after the Second World War, during the 1950s and 1960s. One of the highlights will be a high-profile exhibition at the Herbert Art Gallery during the St. Patrick’s Day Festival in March 2018 and will include filmed interviews, photographs and written materials.
Thanks to National Lottery players, this important project will allow present and future generations to learn about the Irish community’s contribution to Coventry and to celebrate that as part of the city’s diverse communities.
Project materials will be distributed to schools and universities for educational purposes and there will be archived materials at the Herbert Art Gallery, creating a lasting legacy for this lesser known aspect of Coventry’s heritage.
A website will enable the whole community to explore the memories and legacy of the Irish community. It is also a prominent piece of work in the context of the city bidding to become UK City of Culture in 2021.
The Society is also delighted to have received partnership funding for the project from Cork City Council, Deeley Construction and the Arts Council.
Coventry Irish Society manager Simon McCarthy said: “We are delighted to have received this National Lottery funding. The Irish community is proud of its heritage and legacy within the city and we see this project as a celebration of the magnificent contribution the Irish have made to the cultural, social and political life of Coventry.”
Organisers of a charity bike ride are hoping hundreds of people will turn their pedals and raise thousands of pounds for a Coventry Baby Hospice.
Cyclists taking on the 59 mile or 30 miles bike ride challenge will help raise funds for Zoë’s Place Baby Hospice, based in Ash Green.
The Deeley Group/Coventry Road Club joint initiative is being held on Sunday 19th February. The cyclists taking on the 59 mile undulating, circular route will depart from the Deeley Group Head Quarters in Herald Avenue, Coventry at 9.30 am with those taking on the shorter route departing at 10 am.
Ian Court, Press Secretary at Coventry Road Club, said: “Coventry Road Club encourages people to take up the sport of cycling. This event has now become an annual challenge in support of local charities.
“We target novice and experienced cyclists to take on the challenge of either a 59 or 28 mile route through beautiful Warwickshire Countryside. Over the years we have raised thousands of pounds for good causes and we urge people to turn up and raise funds for Zoë’s Place Baby Hospice.”
Registration starts at 9.00am, the entry fee for both routes is just £10 and participants will be rewarded for their efforts with free coffee and cake when they finish.
Edward Hudson, Business Development Coordinator, at Deeley Group said “After hearing the cycle club lost their previous event venue, we were delighted to step in to help. Our facilities are ideal a perfect location for the rides to start, being so close to the Countryside and large enough to cater for the volume of people taking part.
“But most importantly we wanted to support Zoë’s Place Baby Hospice because we have been long standing supporters of this wonderful charity.”
Zoë’s Place Baby Hospice needs to raise £1.3m every year to care for babies and infants with life-limiting and life-threatening conditions from across Coventry and Warwickshire and relies heavily on fundraising events to support them.
Event Challenge Officer at the hospice, Vicky Whitlock said: “It is wonderful that people will be taking on a challenge that will improve their health and at the same time help raise much needed funds for the hospice. Events like this are our lifeline and they really do help us meet our charitable, so we are delighted and thankful to be the beneficiaries.
“We can also provide sponsor forms for those that want them. Just £25 will provide one hour of high quality nursing care for a baby so we hope people will encourage sponsorship.”
The organisers are hoping that participants will complete a registration form and bring it along on the to help ease queues and this can be found at www.coventryroadclub.org.uk/downloads/CRCDeeley2017entryform2.pdf