Did you grow up in the North East or did you decide to relocate here in later life?
I was born and bred in Gateshead and have subsequently lived the majority of my life in the North East.
What do you think it means to be a business person in the North East of England?
Put quite simply, being a business person in the North East of England means everything to me. I am fortunate to have a key role within Park Electrical Distributors which provides me with the opportunity to meet fellow key business people across the region and so gives me a good understanding of the bigger picture.
As the North East’s leading independent electrical wholesaler, we not only offer a high class service to the industry, but we have an involvement with selected local charities, which we feel helps to benefit the local community.
What is your favourite aspect of life in the North East?
That’s easy, wherever you happen to be based in the North East, there is an abundance of facilities available to you. All within an easy drive are beautiful sandy beaches, rolling countryside, we have the Metro Centre, one of the best retail developments and not forgetting the nightlife of Newcastle city centre and Quayside, which is simply unbeatable. All of this on our doorstep!
Where do you like to eat out in the region?
Although I do like to frequent some of the top notch city centre restaurants, to me, there’s no better choice than a good old country pub. Top of my list currently would be The Ridley Arms in Stannington, Northumberland.
Are the people really friendlier?
Being a Geordie, you would expect a biased answer, but having travelled around the UK and having had the privilege of meeting with some warm friendlyfolk from other areas, I can definitely state, hand on heart, the people of the North East are the most welcoming, friendliest bunch of the lot!
What do you think is the best view in the North East?
Whilst the landmark of “The Angel of The North” is always welcoming when returning to the area, for me, it has to be the view from the Quayside looking up past the Millennium Bridge and towards the magnificent, world famous, Tyne Bridge.
Do you think living and working in the North East offers the same opportunities as elsewhere in the UK?
Without a doubt. In recent years, the new developments springing up across the region offer brilliant opportunities to people from all walks of life. We are seeing massive investment in the local universities, which are attracting young students from far and wide. We have an active involvement in some exciting new projects such as Gateshead Quays, Strawberry Place and Science Central, all of which put our region firmly on the map.
Have you had any experience of working elsewhere and how did it compare?
In the early 1990s I began my management career in Sheffield, South Yorkshire, a bustling industrial city where I met many colleagues over a two year period who I still keep in touch with today. That was a great experience and served me well as I developed my career. I can honestly say though, as soon as the opportunity arose, I embraced the move back to my native North East with open arms!