Making It! Taking ingredients, however basic or complex, and crafting them into a product, must surely be where the entire world of trade and commerce begins. In its simplest form it has probably been in existence for as long as what is reputedly the “oldest profession in the world”.
Shropshire proudly holds claim that modern industry as we understand it today had its birth in the heart of our county, and in this issue of Shropshire Business Today Steve Miller, the chief executive of Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust, gives an insight into the transformation which has taken place within the Gorge at what is now such a widely acclaimed World Heritage Site. But although so very different from the early days of the industrial revolution, some things remain constant: new industries are conceived alongside those which have been there from the start; inspiring innovation rubbing shoulders with traditional crafts.
Away from the river, some of Shropshire’s oldest manufacturing names highlight how they have evolved to meet demand and now hold their place as global leaders in their field.
This issue of Shropshire Business Today also demonstrates how new technology has emerged with innovative 21st-century concepts which are winning awards – and worldwide business – all from the county which spawned modern industry.
Perhaps one of the greatest manufacturing stories is that of the automotive industry, with its multiple trading connections to Shropshire. After reaching record UK production in 1972 the industry seemed to have heard its death knell sounded in the late seventies.
Paul Everitt, chief executive of the SMMT, describes why the sector is now hailed as the example of the way in which British industry and commerce should go forward.
With such a positive message it is hardly surprising that Simon Griffiths, Manufacturing Advisory Service’s area director, believes that Shropshire – which he describes as “the powerhouse which brought us the industrial revolution” – is helping to drive a renaissance in English manufacturing.
Perhaps one of the greatest manufacturing stories is that of the automotive industry, with its multiple trading connections to Shropshire. the sector is now hailed as the example of the way in which British industry and commerce should go forward.
But Making It! Is not all about manufacturing – it has, of course, other interpretations, not least success. So Shropshire Business Today also looks at how to enjoy it and, perhaps more seriously, sustain it, including a cautionary note from Mark Waugh about how it is just as important to demonstrate those company achievements to a potentially worldwide audience; so neglect communicating via social media at your peril!
Is it any wonder that Shropshire Business Today has taken such delight in giving what can only be described as a mere snapshot of how this county is actually Making It!