Celebration of Business

Celebration of Business 2018

Tuesday 24 April

Social enterprise is about doing good business - where every pound spent improves someone’s life. - Lord Bird MBE

Over 100 local businesses exhibited their services, wares and connecting with each other within the inspiring surroundings of the Cathedral. These strong relationships are testament to the success of all business and creative industries in our region.

Grow Your Business

The Cambridgeshire Chambers of Commerce led an engaging Grow Your Business workshop in the Lady Chapel. This event encouraged businesses to think about business growth, develop their employees and consider the skills required to attract and employ people for the longer term. There was a focus on People, from apprenticeships up the chain through to mentors. We’ll also heard successful stories of local businesses and took part in a fun, interactive and thought-provoking activities designed to help support your organisation’s growth ambitions. There was plenty of time to network over tea and sandwiches.

Tough Times : Good Business

Our first keynote address for this year's event was delivered by Louise Nicholls, Corporate Head of Human Rights, Sustainability and Food Packaging for Marks & Spencer. Louise warned that our society needed to drastically change in order to survive for the future, and challenged business and consumer alike to change their sourcing, manufacturing and buying habits to help combat issues such as global warming, pollution, and slavery. If a price tag sounds to good to be true its probably at someone else's expense!

We were also delighted to be joined by Lord Bird MBE, Founder and Editor of Chief of the Big Issue. John is a prime example of how business can both empower and help those living in poverty or other difficult circumstances. John hinted that our attitude toward big business might be differently if they were run as social enterprises. John also encouraged us to continue to place pressure on businesses to play their part in contributing to the well being of their employees and the societies in which they operate in return for public trust and reputation.

Louise Nicholls
Corporate Head of Human Rights, Food Sustainability, and Food Packaging at M&S

Louise Nicholls has worked for Marks and Spencer for over 20 years, and has been leading the retailer's ethical trade programme for over a decade. She formed part of the small team that developed the company's ground-breaking Plan A, a 100-point, five-year plan to address a wide range of environmental and social issues. Louise was also instrumental in setting up the supplier data exchange initiative, Sedex. Much of her time is spent travelling the world to meet and interact with M&S' global supply base, as well as speaking at global business responsibility and sustainability summits.

Lord Bird MBE
Founder and Editor-In-Chief, The Big Issue
Born into poverty, John Bird's life has included spells as a thief, young offender, artist and poet. Now an established iconoclast, activist and publisher, John Bird is the force behind The Big Issue, the world's most successful street magazine. He is an inspirational business leader with an outstanding record of using business as a tool for social change. At a time when Corporate Social Responsibility is preoccupying business leaders and consumers alike, John Bird offers an authoritative, fresh approach, and some original perspectives on the interaction of business and society. Bird was nominated for a life peerage in October 2015 and sits as a cross bench peer.


ECBG Celebration of Business 2015

Friday 15 to Thursday 21 May

Keynote Speeches
"The role of business in the well-being of community"
Lord Stephen Green - Former Minister of State for Trade & Investment and former Chairman of HSBC
Dame Julia Cleverdon - Vice President of Business in the Community

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List of Exhibitors 2015


ECBG Celebration of Business Exhibition 2014

Friday 16 - Wednesday 21 May

Celebration of Business Reception keynote speakers audio and video (see below) - Lord Williams of Oystermouth, Rowan Williams, Master of Magdalene College Cambridge, former Archbishop of Canterbury "What is wealthfor?" and Lord Wolfson of Aspley Guise, Simon Wolfson Chief Executive of Next PLC "Wealth - creation, destruction or stagnation. A choice."

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Watch the videos on YouTube

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ECB Celebration of Business 2013

Keynote addresses from Bishop David Thomson "People or Profit?" and George Freeman MP - "The Crisis of Disconnection"

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ECBG Celebration of Business 2012

Charlie Mayfield
Chairman of John Lewis Partnership

The Right Revd Stephen Conway
Bishop of Ely