A northern Tech future and a garden business guru

Tech North's Digital Powerhouse report cover

Tech North’s Digital Powerhouse report cover

Collaboration could “turbo-charge the Northern tech economy” to the tune of £5.7bn, according to a new report, The Digital Powerhouse, published this month by Tech North.

James Bedford, Tech North’s head of investment strategy, told me how the report looks at public procurement, how businesses in the northern tech clusters can get into supply chains in big companies, collaboration, and accessing data, in an interview on this week’s Business Live radio show, broadcast yesterday on Sheffield Live and available as a podcast here.

Also on the programme, Neil Grant of Ferndale Garden Centre discussed a UK-wide campaign which this thriving Sheffield business is behind, the National Children’s Garden Week – plus gave valuable advice for listeners wanting to grow businesses and plants alike. You can listen to the podcast of the show here:


  • 0 – 4:00 introduction and updates, including news of jobs to be lost in Sheffield after BIS (the Department for Business Innovation and Skills) confirmed their Sheffield office will be relocated; Sheffield Social Enterprise Network seeking a new chair; the forthcoming Wosskow Brown Foundation Enterprising Partners event in Barnsley.
  • 4:00 – 20:16 Neil Grant, Ferndale Garden Centre and National Children’s Garden Week. Gardening, wellbeing, encouraging children to grow plants, the Sheffield Food Festival, the biggest challenge for radio gardening experts, what to grow to support bees and wildlife, and some lessons for other business leaders from growing (sorry!) a successful garden centre.
  • 20:16 – 37:37 James Bedford, Tech North: the potential from the ‘Digital Powerhouse’ – and how to a achieve it. Plus the work that Tech North is doing, including access to finance, skills and talent, the Founders’ Network, the Northern Stars, and much more.
  • 37:37 – end Wrapping up and reminders of forthcoming events and some new social enterprise research.

More about the Business Live radio show.

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