Chamber of Commerce welcomes new President Ben Mannion

The Herefordshire & Worcestershire Chamber of Commerce has announced that further to Mike Forrester completing his presidential term at the Chamber, Ben Mannion will take the title of President of the Herefordshire & Worcestershire Chamber of Commerce from 11 September 2020.

Ben Mannion, who is also Director of Hewett Recruitment, graduated with an Economics degree from the University of Cambridge. He started his recruitment career with a national agency in Birmingham before joining Hewett Recruitment in 2009.

Becoming a Director in 2013, Ben’s role sees him work closely with client’s Chief Executives, Managing Directors, HR Teams and Hiring Managers, designing bespoke recruitment solutions and Service Level Agreements to ensure compliance with legislation and delivery of Key Performance Indicators. Ben is also Chair of the Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership’s Future Skills Board, sits on the main LEP Employment & Skills Board and is a Worcestershire Ambassador.

Of his appointment, Ben Mannion said: ““I am honoured to be taking over the position of President with Herefordshire & Worcestershire Chamber of Commerce, picking up on the excellent work of Mike Forrester. Hewett Recruitment are longstanding supporters of the Chamber and the fantastic work they do and now – perhaps more than ever – there is a need for the local business community to work together to overcome the challenging times we face. The Chamber has a key role to play in this – I look forward to getting to work with Sharon and the team.”

The Chamber would like to express its thanks to Mike Forrester for completing his term as President of the Herefordshire & Worcestershire Chamber of Commerce. During his two-year presidency, Mike has drawn on his experiences in the food industry, running manufacturing businesses and heading up International sales and commercial development and activities in export markets. Orchard Valley Foods develop and sell innovative ingredients to all sectors of the food manufacturing industry, food service and retail and sell to over 30 countries.

In addition, the Chamber are also delighted to welcome Chris Walklett, Tax Partner, at Bishop Fleming, who will be joining as the Chair of the Worcestershire Area Council. Chris is Tax lead for Bishop Fleming’s West Midlands office and Head of Bishop Fleming’s international tax and advisory services after 23 years’ experience in the sector. Chris is one of the UK’s leading R&D tax credit advisors and an accredited expert witness who is also a director of the Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership and is heavily involved with Malvern Hills Science Park, in his role as non-exec director, and advisory board member and founder of Worcestershire’s BetaDen Tech Incubator.

Sharon Smith, CEO of the Herefordshire & Worcestershire Chamber of Commerce, commented: “We look forward to welcoming Ben to this position, given his particular expertise in the local skills agenda and labour market expertise and wish him the best luck in this new role.”

“We are also delighted to welcome Chris Walklett as the new Chair of the Worcestershire Area Council and look forward to his support in developing economic development within the two counties from his position within the Area Council.”

“Finally, I would like to express our thanks to outgoing President Mike, who has brought to the table his fantastic expertise on a number of matters from his years of experience. As a previous Awards winner of ‘Chamber Business of the Year’ and a recipient of the Queens Awards for International Trade, Mike’s experiences and the way he embodies excellence in business, has ensured that the Chamber has sailed smoothly through the challenges of the past two years under his leadership.”