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For 2023 (and 2024 ...) - we are now fully retired from IT training.
We have made many, many friends over 25 years of teaching about Python, Tcl, Perl, PHP, Lua, Java, C and C++ - and MySQL, Linux and Solaris/SunOS too. Our training notes are now very much out of date, but due to upward compatability most of our examples remain operational and even relevant ad you are welcome to make us if them "as seen" and at your own risk.

Lisa and I (Graham) now live in what was our training centre in Melksham - happy to meet with former delegates here - but do check ahead before coming round. We are far from inactive - rather, enjoying the times that we are retired but still healthy enough in mind and body to be active!

I am also active in many other area and still look after a lot of web sites - you can find an index ((here))

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Melksham Chamber of Commerce and Industry
Resources from the web site of Well House Consultants on the subject of Melksham Chamber of Commerce and Industry. We provide open source training course and business hotel accommodation in Melksham, Wiltshire, England

The Melksham Chamber of Commerce and Industry meets at Well House Manor, and at present Lisa's on their committee and I'm their president ...
Articles and tips on this subjectupdated
4738Melksham Chamber of Commerce - my final Presidents report
From last night ... Melksham Chamber of Commerce and Industry. President's report to AGM 9.5.2017 Written by Graham Ellis I'm stepping down this evening from the position of President of the Melksham Chamber of Commerce. Traditionally, this role is held for a year or two; I had the honour of being ...
4672Annual review of Melksham Matters for Chamber of Commerce AGM
So much has happened in the last 12 months in Melksham that I don't know where to start. I'm missing the AGM on Tuesday 17th (18:00 at Well House Manor / open to all), so sending in my report by email - composed and checked from Saudi Arabia! At the general election almost exactly a year ago, Michelle ...
4399The Campus in Melksham - name, logo, and livery choice
What should the new Melksham Campus be called? How should it look and feel? The arts and heritage subgroup of the Community Operations Board took a look at this, with professional help, a year or so back and came to some conclusions about building the community into the whole fabric of the building ...
4278Future Swindon - Westbury train services. At current level into the future?
This post has been prepared on behalf of the Melksham Chamber of Commerce and Industry, as resolved at their meeting on May 20th 2014. The Department for Transport is consulting with stakeholders about how train services should be run in the South West of England and South Wales from 2015 to 2020 ...
4170Herman Miller coming to Melksham - the Chamber of Commerce is briefed
It's always good to have to get more chairs out ;-) ... A very interesting presentation to the Chamber of Commerce this evening, when Graham Dean of Herman Miller told us why the company has chosen a site in Melksham for their new UK facility, shifting most of their existing employees from their Bath ...
4164Melksham Market - every Tuesday
Great to see pictures of a new Melksham Market - in Church Street Car Park as from today   Every Tuesday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. My thanks to Hayley Spencer of Komix for permission to use her pictures (I'm in Manchester this week) ... I'll be looking at the market next week and hopefully using ...
4151Tell me a bit about Melksham
• New Resident? • Visiting the town on business? • Tourist? • Looking for things for your visiting relatives to do? • Visiting the town to see where your forefathers lived? • Considering a move to Melksham? • Coming here on an exchange visit? Lots of reasons ...
4103Questions from children about Melksham Campus
Children ask us the most challenging of questions... here are some addressed to the chair of the "Melksham SCOB" - in other words to chap who's spearheading much of the Melksham Campus thought locally. 1) When are facilities being moved and will they stay the same? Will any be added to or taken away? 2) ...
4097Melksham Chamber of Commerce - Report for AGM, 21st May 2013
What an eventful year! On the development of Melksham for the future, progress has been substantial on the Campus project, and the canal has moved forward. Big new businesses such as Herman Miller and Castle Combe International are moving to town, and smaller businesses are setting up and / or moving ...
4046Over a hundred welcoming businesses - Melksham Town Centre
Melksham can celebrate a hundred open-for-business doors (shops and services) in its High Street area - I know that because I walked around early this morning, pushing flyers for the Chamber of Commerce meeting that's happening on Tuesday evening through letter boxes. There's a great deal going on in ...
4041Report on the last year - Melksham Chamber of Commerce and Industry for Melksham Without Parish Council
The last 12 months have seen the Chambers of Commerce in Wessex undergo a radical restructure, with the Melksham Chamber's reliance on the central services of the Wessex Association in Trowbridge much reduced, with our admin and secretarial services returned to Melksham. The Chamber works closely with ...
3752Melksham Visitors Map - Bus routes and train lines to and from the town
Melksham is a great place to base yourself to see Bath and the beautiful countryside of Wiltshire, and there's plenty to see if you're using public transport too. The map above shows public transport links to and from Melksham (the big box in the centre of the diagram) which was drawn in June 2012. Key: * ...
4014Costa Coffee in Melksham - is it a good idea?
Originally written, 13:00 on 22nd Feb. Updated / minor corrections that evening. Additional comments added to answer feedback - 11:20, 23rd Feb. See base of article I love Melksham - it's a town of friendly people who welcomed us when we moved here in 1999, and in turn I try to give a warm welcome ...
4002Images of Melksham you havent seen before
At Tuesday's Chamber of Commerce meeting, we were talking about pictures of Melksham for a 2014 calendar, and for the Chamber publicity ... and since then I've looked through some 8000 images I took in 2012. It's surprising how few are exactly right for what''s needed ... but I did find a selection ...
3987Melksham Chamber of Commerce - join us in our future
Melksham is my adopted town - quietly handsome, conveniently arranged, a wide variety of services, reasonably accessible, a kind climate, and a welcoming population who embraced Lisa and myself when we moved here in 1999. We plan to be in Melksham for the forseeable future - and we'll do what we can ...
3948Quiet little town? Advanced Technology Centre?
We live in a quiet little town in the English countryside, set way back in time where nothing has changed for many years, right? WRONG! It never ceases to amaze me how many advanced engineering skills we have in this town - how many innovative and international businesses where the technology you'll ...
3812The Melksham News - July 2012 - Part 1, Campus and Chamber of Commerce
Update, 22nd July 2012. With so much going on over the last few weeks, and summer holidays now with us, it's a good time to summarise where we stand on a number of issues. For Part 2 - Rail and Canal - see [here] Further sections to be added Melksham Campus .... The SCOB has completed the feasibility ...
1429Remembrance day - inside a church and inside the day
I remember how bored I got at school at the end of term Church service - we all shuffled across the road to St Nic's and listened to Rev Ogilvie - who was a nice and earnest man, and great in a pastoral role. But listening to him and to the head have us sing songs with words I found - even in those ...
3889Melksham Chamber of Commerce - whence in 2013 and beyond?
Do you run a business in Melksham or are you thinking of starting a business? You should come along to the Melksham Chamber of Commerce meeting on 16th October, 18:30 at Well House Manor on Spa Road. All welcome - whether you're a member or not. This is the most important Chamber meeting of the year, ...
3880Chamber of Commerce - looking forward in Melksham and in Wessex
Do you run a business in Melksham or are you thinking of starting a business? You should come along to the Melksham Chamber of Commerce meeting on 16th October, 18:30 at Well House Manor on Spa Road. All welcome - whether you're a member or not. This is the most important Chamber meeting of the year, ...
3867The difficult interface between the business, council and voluntary sectors
Last night, I attended the "Grow Wiltshire" introductory and networking event in Melksham Town Hall - learned all (or rather something) about the new Melksham Community Blog at (what a mouthful - I've added my own short link at ) I ...
3850Bus times - Chippenham Station to Melksham, with London connections
Access to Melksham for business visitors from far and wide is vital for our international and thriving business base in the town. And whilst many of those visitors drive, many do not - either they're international visitors who prefer not to drive on the left, or they prefer to use public transport. ...
3818Making things happen - litter and ASB and lost dogs in Melksham
A meeting last night - organised by Wiltshire Council / our local area board, under the title "Everyone wants to get on - how can we make this happen?". The evening's theme was very much along the lines of "your local council's having to watch expenditure and cut back even more, so how can we make better ...
3787Melksham Pride - the Chamber of Commerce, and the future
I'm proud to live and work in Melksham, to have our business visitors come here from all over the world, to use the shops and services on offer here, and to work at a place where we employ lovely people who live in the town. And so are many others. Our "Wilts" room was filled with enthusiasts for the ...
3768Melksham Chamber of Commerce - looking to our future shape. Pivotal meeting next Tuesday
Melksham Chamber of Commerce and Industry is an institution that dates back many years - I posted a constitution that was some 20 years old a while back, and commented that most of it remains relevant today. Towards the end of the 20th Century, Chambers of Commerce in Wessex clubbed together to form ...
3767How well do you know Melksham?
Here are 24 pictures of signs taken in the town, all yesterday (16th June 2012), and all in the order that I took them too. They are all taken from places where there is right of way / general public access, so if you want to go around and look for them, you're free to do so and you won't need to venture ...
3751Public transport for international arrivals into Melksham
Map drawn June 2012 Melksham is a town located around 100 miles to the West of London, close to the Cotswolds, Bath, Longleat, Salisbury Plain and a great deal of other beautiful countryside. It also has a thriving commercial community, with several industrial and high tech areas, and many smaller companies ...
3748Not everyone has a computer - 9 more ways to learn about the Melksham Campus
"Not everyone has a computer" ... written, by hand, on a notice about the Melksham Campus which gave the URL of the website as a source of further information. I agree - "not everyone has a computer" - and indeed the hard-to-reach groups that the town needs to engage as they move forward and change ...
3739Go green - business seminar in Melksham
This Wednesday in Melksham - a business seminar entitled "Save Money, go Green" - full flyer and details below. I'm rather excited about this seminar, because it brings business information and presentation to Melksham, and there are all sorts of issues (such as how to recycle business waste cost effectively) ...
3732Ten more visitors to your premises every day?
Are you a shopkeeper in Melksham? Would you like another ten visitors to your premises every day? Over the past 6 to 8 weeks, I've been helping to enhance the diary pages on the Melksham Chamber of Commerce's web site, adding in special events and things that are happening in the Melksham Community ...
3714Just 12 winners? Or 371 or more? Town Centres.
If I were in a competitive bid for business, and I knew there were 10 other bidders all looking for the same single contract, and all putting a very great deal of effort into winning, I would think twice. I would ask myself "is this a sensible investment of our resources - a sensible gamble". And - ...
3710Encouraging business in Melksham and its neighbourhood - keep business local??
I want to encourage people to do business in Melksham. Not only for the money spent directly in the local economy, but also because of the proportion of thay money that's respent in the local economy and recirculates here. It's data from the USA, but The local multiplier suggests that 45% is reinvested ...
3706An exciting Chamber of Commerce AGM - sound like an Oxymoron?
A vibrant and exciting AGM at the Chamber of Commerce last night. How rarely can I use words like "vibrant" and "exciting" about a Chamber AGM, but I can about last night's! • Azim Adbul, The Sultan, Melksham, with a talk about "How the Bangladeshi community has integrated into British society". I've ...
3700Why do people use chains rather than independent traders?
When you can get quality, personal, local service from a business that's based in, and run from, your town, why don't you use it? Perhaps it's because you don't know what's available in your town, or perhaps it's because you've had a bad experience with a local business in the past, and that's put you ...
3697Events in Melksham - read all about them, and tell us about yours
"There's nothing happening in Melksham". Funny that people should say that when there's so much happening! On the Chamber of Commerce Diary alone the following events are listed: 16 Apr 2012 (Mon) Learning to Program in Perl 16 Apr 2012 (Mon) Deeper than Art? - King's Arms from 15:00 16 Apr 2012 ...
3696Melksham government and business organisations
Who's who? I have attempted to list the various bodies you may come across and wish to contact. For a diary of special events in the area, please see [here]. Please contact me if you spot any errors or omissions, or if you represent one of the organisations and would like me to replace my description ...
3693Wiltshire Business Support Service
The Wiltshire Business Support Service - the successor to Business Link in many ways - was launched at the beginning of this month. It's based at the Wessex Association of Chambers of Commerce office in Trowbridge, but the free independent advisors travel to meet businesses throughout the county. Please ...
3682Melksham Business Newsreel
There's a lot going on in Melksham ... I thought it worth posting (for wider reading) the headlines of issues that I'll have on my list for a meeting that's coming up this Thursday evening. a) Business support. At the last Chamber of Commerce meeting, Chris Simpson introduced the forthcoming business ...
3677Some advise for guest speakers at meetings
I "get around" in various roles I hold - to SCOB meetings (to do with the Melksham Campus), to rail meetings (to do with better rail services in Wiltshire). Usually, there's a guest speaker or guest visitors at the meeting; on a few occasions, that's my role. And the behaviour of the guest speaker fascinates ...
3672Melksham Train Service - please support the TransWilts case for regular trains
Melksham's no tiny village - it's the fourth largest town in the Wilsthire unitary area after Salisbury, Trowbridge and Chippenham - and yet it has a lousy train service with just two trains each way a day, at times which are next to useless for business visitors to the town, or for people to commute ...
3663Changing shops and organisations - Melksham, the last and next five years
It seems like it's "all change" in Melksham. I've been re-reading the November, 2006 report by Melksham First into the renewal and regeneration of aspects of our shopping area, and it stuck me just how many of the organisations and shops mentioned are no longer with us. The report was jointly sponsored ...
3627Meeting Report - Tuesday 21st Feb - to Melksham Chamber of Commerce from Shadow Community Operations Board
Last Tuesday (21st), the Melksham Chamber of Commerce paid host to Roy While and Mark Stone, talking about the Melksham Campus at Melksham House. The meeting was well advertised and open to all, and gave Roy and Mark an early opportunity to inform, and listen to, interested businesses. (Roy While, ...
3598Melksham Civic Awards - report and pictures
Friday Night was the Mayor's Reception - an event to which all the dignitaries from neighbouring towns are invited (and they turn up in full regalia), and at which civic awards are handed out. I received an invite and attended as a representative of the Melksham Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Whilst ...
3496Melksham - Business to Business Speed Networking - build ahead for 2012
Bookings for this event have been very light, and as the whole point of an event like this is to meet a lot of other people, we have taken the decision (6.1.2012) to cancel the event on 16th January. All prospective participants are welcome instead to come along on Tuesday, 21st February as guests to ...
3560Melksham, Month by month through 2011
It's December 2011 ... and the run up to Christmas. Yesterday afternoon, I was tidying up thousands of picture I have taken this year, and I've chosen one picture from each month - link [here] - to show something of Melksham and remind you about what's been happening in the town / surrounding area. January's ...
3527Melksham - changing times, an opportunity for the future
Things in Melksham, they are a'changing. I started the day with a swim in the to-be-replaced Blue Pool in Melksham, then walked down the High Street to Sainsbury's to watch the Mayor cut the ribbon for the official reopening of the store, complete with Coffee Shop and clothes section that's ...
3495Looking forward - Chamber of Commerce has 2012 and beyond on the agenda
It struck me as I was updating the Melksham Chamber of Commerce Web site after last night's meeting as to just how FORWARD LOOKING our Melksham Agenda has become. We're looking at exciting times for the town and the area. The recession is, for sure, hitting some businesses but others are asking "recession ...
3492Upcoming events in and about Melksham - more dates for your diary
Today - Saturday 22nd October - I'm going to a West Wilts Rail User Group Ramble (from station to station) over breakfastthis morning ... as usual I'll be one of the few to arrive by car, as every other West Wilts station has appropriate services to get there. And the I'll be going to the community ...
3481Some thoughts in answer to some Melksham Campus questions
I was triggered into writing this article by a thread on "Melksham People" - link [here] to open and read that thread in a new frame. I'm answering independently of that thread as my answer may turn out to be a long one, easier to read in a wider format and with pictures. Last Monday, Sasha Heseltine ...
3475Havant - Shop Frontages.
Considering Town Centres ... and comparing ours in Melksham to others I visit ... I was a bit shocked at just how many units are unoccupied in Havant last night. A town four times "our size" but with a very large supply of spare shops and a lack of shopkeepers. Perhaps some of that's because people ...
3470Currently pictured in Melksham
Here's a recent selection of Melksham pictures ... I've got very technical of late, and I know there are some folks who have a look here occasionally to see where I've been walking the dog and what I've noticed. I tend to take (or at least publish) pictures that others might not ... The Spa Houses ...
3438Melksham to become a part of Trowbridge?
Initial proposals for change have been made by the boundary commission for Parliamentary Constituencies in the South West - published in full [here]. As part of their pre-amble, they write: "The South West region has been allocated 53 constituencies – a reduction of two from the current arrangement. ...
3427What is on the Melksham Agenda?
Pulling together headlines from various sources, I've come up with the following as a list of "interesting things going on / happened recently in Melksham" ... Events 2012 -> Town Council Area Board, 20th September Art in Wiltshire initiative 26th SCOB meeting 27th Chamber meeting Town Traders Meeting ...
34231 + 1 + 1 + 1 = 12?
On Sunday - the first time in a long while - Lisa and I visited the shopping Mall at Cribb's Causeway near Bristol. It was lively and busy; we bought some things we needed in John Lewis (and were disappointed that others were out of stock), we looked at a variety of ladies clothing, we ate at Nando's, ...
3420Making best use of the new enthusiasm for Melksham
Wanted - keen, enthusiastic people to drive Melksham forward into the future. And wanted - those people working together to make us a better community in terms of success, prosperity, greenness, life quality, enjoyability. We have a lot of enthusiastic people and I'm delighted to read in various local ...
3383Are people who walk into Melksham being asked to subsidise parking?
Views in this post are personal, and do not neccesarily reflect the position of any of the organisations of which I am a member We could achieve so much more in our town and area with a bit more joined up thinking. Save money, save hassle too. That's noy to say that we don't achieve a lot already; ...
3380Melksham Jelly - An Occasional Office for Home Workers
A few years ago, a visitor stood in our kitchen at home and told me that "running your own business from home's not an option - it never works". She was new to the UK, having moved here from a different part of the world to get married to the love of her life who was British, and seeking suggestions ...
3343Summer Sunday Train Service Starts - Swindon Chippenham and Melksham to Weymouth
I may be away ... but I understand that the "dress rehearsal" run of the Summer Sunday service is going well ... around 50 people on the Weymouth train from Swindon and Chippenham, with a further 25 or so joining at Melksham. That's a good number - considering that the train also picks up all ...
3340Summer Sunday Timetable - TransWilts Trains
Here's the Summer Sunday timetable for the TransWilts services - please come along, please support the train service! Click on the image for an enlarged version ... and visit [here] for a full .pdf brochure which you can print out and fold. If you want to see that on your screen in the right orientation, ...
3334A lesson from the sporran market?
Markets change, and we must adopt with the times. If I was still doing exactly the same thing that I set Well House Consultant up to do in 1995, I would be stuggling - or to be accurate, we would probably be out of business by now. But we've taken ideas, adopted and adapted, experimented, not been ...
3325The Olympic Torch, and Melksham House
The Olympic Torch is being carried by 8000 people ... and without any particular one of them, it wouldn't reach its destination. If you look amongst the 8000, I'm sure you'll find some people who wouldn't get on with all 7999 of the others, but it's a team effort. Yesterday afternoon, Wiltshire Council ...
3307Melksham Community Radio launches
Melksham Community Radio's launch event - on NOW at Melksham House. See [here]. Shows are available on podcast so you can hear what's been said; live broadcasts planned too! With all my various hats on, I welcome Melksham Community Radio to the elite band of town-specific media that brings us news ...
3299Presidents Report to Melksham Chamber of Commerce, 24.5.2011
Firstly, please register my apologies for missing the AGM of the Melksham Chamber of Commerce; a longstanding committment to spend this week out of the country means I'm not going to be there in person - but at least I'm with you in mind and spirit. I've now served two years as President of the Chamber; ...
3279Letter to The Editor
From Today's Wiltshire Times [6th May 2011] Dear Sir, Your Good Friday edition carried an advert placed by Wiltshire Council looking for land to create a Community Campus in Melksham. A single site campus to include library, swimming pool, youth centre, sports and many other facilities (perhaps even ...
3275Melksham Chamber of Commerce - grows to appoint new Press Officer. Welcome. Sam
Melksham Chamber of Commerce and Industry is delighted to welcome Samantha (Sam) Geddes to the new role of honorary press officer. Sam has lived in Melksham for a number of years, and runs her own business "Organised Little Things" - a holistic lifestyle organising service created to offer tailored time ...
3272Melksham Car Parking - current charges and limits
This table was checked against signage earlier today (1st May 2011) and lists public car parks and marked roadside spaces in the town. It does not include private supermarket car parks (at some of which you may be able to park and walk into town) nor does it include any roadside parking where spaces ...
3249Events - Spring and Early Summer 2011 in Melksham
26th April - "Melksham - the way forward?" - sponsored by the Melksham Chamber of Commerce - [link] 12th May - Area Board (younger people's meeting) - [link] 21st May - Komix opens - [link] 23rd May - ASDA's opening day - [link] 24th May - Chamber of Commerce AGM - [link] 28th May - Baby Contest ...
3246Melksham - the way forward. 26th April, Well House Manor
Library - Postal Sorting Office - Swimming Pool - Youth Centre - Registration Service - The Bear - Professional Development Centre - Art Cafe - Road Safety Training Unit - Sports Centre - Bus routes and services levels - Car Parking - are all changing or on the move in Melksham. And what more to follow? ...
3088Melksham - two many councils?
I've only lived in Melksham for ten years - so I may be asking a very delicate question that's steeped in history - but can anyone tell me why we have separate councils for Melksham Town and Melksham Without? The various parts of Melksham rely on one another to make a complete community - with the town's ...
3217Vandalism and riot from the minority - the effect
Last Wednesday, I walked to work past the Canberra Youth Centre on Spa Road, and I was disappointed to see that the lovely display of daffodils had been severely damaged, with flowers lying crushed and damaged on the lawns, and strewn around on the walkways, pavement and in the road. We've heard such ...
3214Melksham Campus - any last minute inputs from Melksham businesses?
Over the past few weeks, I've listened and learned about the plans for Melksham's Campus (as best I can, as there seem to be some important questions for which answers are not provided). I've attended a Community Area Partnership consultation, the Melksham Without Parish meeting, and the Chamber of Commerce ...
3193Melksham Campus - what, why, questions, concerns and how you can input
There's controversy in Melksham at the moment - Wiltshire Council is proposing the transfer of sports, swimming and library, youth and other facilities from various locations dotted around the town to a new single site campus on the Devizes road, out of the town centre and next to the Melksham Oak secondary ...
3188What proportion of the British Workforce still works a Monday to Friday, 9 to 5, week?
Yesterday, I received an invite to a community meeting that takes place next Monday morning at 10:30; the meeting is for people aged over 55 - that's retired people, and also men who are still working (but into their last 10 years), and women who are into their final stretch too. It's a consultation ...
3172On consultations, car parking, and Melksham town centre
On Consultations. Don't throw out the baby with the bathwater. And wash the baby while the water is hot. There are some consultations around which aren't worth the "paper they are written on" - or should I say that aren't worth the bandwidth and time they take up - those consultations are the the ...
3173What is the Melksham Chamber of Commerce?
The Melksham Chamber of Commerce and Industry is an independent organization, funded by its members and run mostly by volunteers (the committee) who give their time for free. The Chamber is a member of the Wessex Association of Chambers of Commerce - a group of 17 Chambers and similar business organizations ...
3162Keep your business customer-friendly!
If your shopfront say "9 to 6" but a customer finds you in darkness and locked up at 5:30, you'll have lost his business - then and perhaps into the future. If your staff are whiling away the hours on computer games behind the counter, and continue to do so when you have customers who are seeking help, ...
3141Wiltshire Rail services - a golden opportunity
This year, some small decisions will be made on future rail services. But they'll be big, big decisions as far a the TransWilts rail line is concerned. They'll have the most profound effect - for years to come - on the communities of the TransWilts corridor. Will the road from Trowbridge to the M4 ...
3113Trowbridge and Melksham to Chippenham - more roadworks, even slower journey over the winter
I understand that Wessex Water are going to be replacing a water main in Beanacre from mid January until mid March, and that will disrupt traffic on the A350 - the major road which links Trowbridge and Melksham to Chippenham and the rest of the country via the M4. I didn't have to look back very far ...
3117Opportunities for Melksham - new businesses in the town
1.1.11 ... and walking through Melksham, I mused at the number of new shop fronts that weren't there a year ago. We're in changing times. Online sales have moved from being a quirky novelty to a significant slice of the retail market. Out of town shopping areas have a significance they didn't have ...
2487Melksham Forum
• Do you live in Melksham? • Do you work in the town, or nearby? • Do you shop here, or visit from time to time - on business, to see friends and relatives, or because you just like the place? • Do you travel through, or past, and wonder what we have to offer? • Are you ...
2995A river in Melksham is not just for boaters.
How many boats will the link canal ... the river through the town ... and the ongoing Wilts and Berks canal bring to Melksham? Not as many as you might think - I've seen it written somewhere that out of every 100 people visiting the river in such a scheme, only 4 will arrive by boat - and as there's ...
2982Travel, Transport and Tourism - A vision for Melksham, 2026
This is a seed document that I've prepared as a pump-priming exercise to help the Community Area Partnership (at the request of the vicechair of the steering group) and other associated organisations think ahead towards what they would like to see in the 2026 area plan. It comes in three main sections: a) ...
2959A Melksham news roundup
On 1st September, our Twitter feed from this blog ceased to work when Twitter switched off the ability to automatically submit via basic authentication and went exclusively to a system called OAuth (see [here]). It was well announced ahead of time, but in the mountains of information, work, events, ...
2957Welcome to Countrywides new Melksham store
Countrywide open their new store in Melksham this week - and yesterday evening, I had a change to look around during a preview session. Wow - what a store! The company's been in the town for many years - and indeed we've been good customers - with a very helpful and friendly staff and (as far as Gypsy's ...
2932Getting into and out of Wiltshire towns .. a.k.a. Car Parking?
Background - Wiltshire Council is currently consulting on the way forward for car parking in Wiltshire. Parking fees are always unpopular, and can be expensive to collect. But there should be some gains from a degree of system (if not price) standardization in the new, larger area rather than the old ...
2883Melksham Oak - photos of the new community school
On Tuesday evening, we had a chance to look around Melksham's new school, built and equipped at a cost of some 32 million pounds. And very impressive it is too. Here are some pictures (taken with permission); I rather suspect working pictures will be hard to come by as the stipulation is "do not ...
2891Wiltshire Council ask how they can help businesses
There it was again ... "we have undertaken projects already in Salisbury, Trowbridge and Chippenham". Yesterday evening, I attended an event hosted by Wiltshire Council and the Wiltshire Strategic Economic Partnership; a "consultation" where local businesses were being asked various questions about ...
2872Moved - Melksham Lorry Park
It was last month that a public meeting in Melksham decided that the Lorry section that's been in King Street Card Park for many years should be closed to all HGVs and PSVs as soon as possible, and the signage for "temporary" closure has now arrived. [article]. Here it is ... and the fully published ...
2867Cycling in Melksham, and looking forward
At the West of England partnership meeting last Tuesday, I attended one session that was looking towards healthier and greener transport; to a very great extent, that session had been taken over by the advocates of cycling - and indeed they had the most dramatic increases in cycling to report, and it's ...
2853Transport in Wessex - today and into the future
Yesterday, we drove to Chippenham and back - three of us in a five seat car. The three of us then drove to Atworth, and two drove back to Melksham. One returned to Atworth, and then three of us from Atworth to Potterne, two of us on into Devizes, and two back from Devizes. Look at all that fresh air ...
2837Lorry Parking in Melksham
From the Chamber of Commerce Administrator ... Chris Major, Parking Services Manager from Wiltshire Council has asked [me] to advise you of changes to King Street Car Park in Melksham regarding the lorry park which is going to take effect c. 5th July 2010. I would be grateful if you could pass this ...
2827Melksham - a gem in Wiltshire
I have been asked to write a message for the program for the Melksham Carnival and the ...
2782Tell the Melksham Chamber or you only have yourself to blame
I'm following on from my post on the history of the Melksham Chamber of Commerce yesterday, looking back at the time that Leekes came into the town nearly 20 years ago. Even two decades later, it has sparked discussion. The Chamber exists to look after the interests of: (a) Its members (b) Other businesses ...
2779The history and future of Melksham Chamber of Commerce
The Melksham Chamber of Commerce was one the founding 6 members of the Wessex Association of Chambers of Commerce, which has now grown to 17 members and shares offices, staff, intelligence, training facilities, marketing and more across Wiltshire and a somewhat beyond. You can find old reference to ...
2770Melksham Chamber of Commerce - Presidents report to AGM
It's only when you sit down and write a list of what's happened and what you've done in the past year that you realise just how much of it there is! Last night was Melksham Chamber of Commerce and Industry's AGM, and I was asked to do a little review of the year. Oh - and I retained (unopposed) my ...
2725How do our tactics help us meet the strategy, for the greater good?
At what point does one say "look - I'll do this for the great good, not for my own gain"? And how does one turn fine words and strategy into the shorter term tactics within existing rules and philosophies? Questions that I came away asking from last night's launch of the Mid Wiltshire Economic Partnership. ...
2683Car Parking in Melksham
Car Parking in the centre of Melksham is a major concern to many residents of the town and the surrounding area. Shops out of town are limited with a very limited bus service to may parts, driving is the only practical way to "nip quickly into town". This April, car parking costs across Wiltshire will ...
2666Random thoughts on Melksham Town Planning and development
On Friday evening, I attended the Mayor's reception in Melksham Assembly Hall, and on Saturday I traveled to Taunton to attend TravelWatch SouthWest. At one of those meetings (and I'm ashamed to say I can't recall which) someone made the poignant comment that, for the most part, Town Planners don't actually ...
2640How is your tax pound spent?
Where does the UK Government Spend your Money? What proportion goes on Defence, on Pensions, or Foreign Aid, on Economic Development, and on Health? Is the same amount spent for each person in the South West as in London and in Scotland? If you can answer these questions I'll be very impressed ... ...
2594Melksham Area - your community view is sought
Today was a very public consultation in the Town Hall in Melksham, where the Community area partnership (who's role is to gather and promote the views and aspirations of the Melksham area community) held "Open House" on the core strategy. Newly set up, with a first meeting last December, the Melksham ...
2568Forums for your Melksham and open source discussions
Do you have questions you want to ask? Views about Melksham, First Great Western Train services or Open Source languages that you would like to post? If you do / have, you'll be very welcome to join our forums / communities - listed below. Just a word, first, though. There's a minority of internet ...
1880Melksham Chamber of Commerce, or the FSB
Update - January 2010 This article is from my "blog" - written personally, and does not reflect any official view from either organisation mentioned. I would like to apologise if it has mistakenly given any 'official' signals at any point prior to my adding this clarification. Yesterday, my email ...
2546How well do you know Melksham - a quiz for Christmas
I've been out for two Christmas Dinners with local groups this year - the Bowerhill Villager (local newsletter) and the Chamber of Commerce ... and I've enjoyed them both. And in the spirit of Christmas, here's the quiz (via a link) that I put together for the "Bowerhill Villager" evening - how well ...
2544Vision for Wiltshire
As I tried to put together my final thoughts on Wiltshire's Strategic Plan Consultation, I helped myself by putting an overview of my thoughts together so that my inputs really will be strategic and not just about what we want / don't want in our back yard! A Vision for Wilsthire ... Where should ...
2288Wiltshire Community Area Partnerships
A few days ago, I wrote about all the new structures at Wiltshire Council; I was having trouble working out what they all did, and I don't think I am the only one having trouble understanding it. (See that article). I got stuck at "Community Partnerships" or "Community Area Partnerships" which seemed ...
2289pre-Inaugural briefing - Melksham Community Area Partnership
14th July, Semington Village Hall - the sort of inaugural meeting of the Melksham Community Area Partnership (see about CAPs and about Wiltshire's new structures). I wondered why Semington Village Hall for a "Melksham" meeting - Semington Village has been made an awkward place to drive to due to road ...
2540Rock and hard place .. and the relaxing right one won
Occasionally - just occasionally - I let my hair down and say "enough is enough" with meetings and work ... and let my hair down. And so it was on Wednesday evening, when a long standing Christmas Dinner with some of the 'core' folks at the Chamber of Commerce got overbooked by the Melksham Are Board ...
2531Melksham - new Tuesday Market
A new Tuesday market opened this week in Melksham ... I popped in briefly and took a few pictures. It's good to be able to shop local (and indeed the Chamber of Commerce current has a "shop local" campaign running. The market include both food and non-food products ... but on this first visit, ...
2514The road show has been - where now?
Yesterday Wiltshire Council's "Road Show" came to town - showing their core strategy plans for the next 20 years. Rather than allowing haphazard and undirected growth and development there is sense if the unitary council providing a degree of 'steer' ... making sure that any new housing is built in ...
2521Melksham Market - Tuesdays, 09:00 to 14:00
A new market comes to Melksham - every Tuesday from 8th December, open from 09:00 until 14:00. It will be a general market, and will run in the Assembly Hall and in the car park adjoining the Town Hall, with some 18 to 20 traders. [Notice from Mayor] The Assembly Hall is a large covered area just behind ...
2508Community Area Partnership - inaugural AGM
This evening was the public meeting and first AGM of the new Melksham Community Area Partnership. The CAP is an independent (there's an interesting word!) body that mirrors the area covered by the Melksham Area Board of Wiltshire Council, and is (I understand) the last such CAP to be set up of 20, ...
2495Planning the future of Wiltshire
Background to planning the future - the mechanism Where will Wiltshire be in 20 years time? Will it grow, and if so how - will development all go into 2 or 3 major towns, leaving smaller towns to loose their significance and hearts? Will development spring up all over the place, or in a new town as ...
2465Melksham Town - asleep or awake?
I'm writing this early - before six in the morning - and already I've been around Melksham town as it starts to awaken for another day, dropping off a Melksham Chamber of Commerce Update Letter through the letterboxes of all the businesses. When I checked all their details for the town map a couple ...
2459New Web Site for Melksham Chamber of Commerce
I'm going to "hit the button" this week ... a small, but very important new website for Melksham Chamber of Commerce and Industry and under their own domain name too! The Chamber is a member of the Wessex Association of Chambers of Commerce - covering more that a ...
2437Wiltshire Unitary News - Chamber of Commerce Intelligence
In my role with Melksham Chamber of Commerce, a number of "nuggets" come my way - four recently relating to the new Wiltshire Unitary Authority and how things are changing / have changed. 1. Charity shops, which used to get 80% discount off the business rates on their premises in our area, now get 100% ...
2328Melksham - no trains, no southbound buses through the town
There have been NO TRAINS AT ALL to Melksham for a week. And the town centre is closed to southbound traffic, sending the buses around the bypass, and the local "we know where to go" vehicles around the suburban streets. All of which does precious little immediate good for the businesses. When Bath ...
2260Important - the future of Melksham / Chamber of Commerce
There's a difference between 'urgent' and 'important' ... and one of the things that we sometimes do is get bogged down in the urgent without looking ahead to the longer term important. Here is a piece I have just written for the "Party in the Park" program ... A message from the Melksham Chamber of ...
2220Melksham Traders - where do we go?
Some people tell me how quiet Melksham in these days, and other tell me that it's bustling. The picture above shows that it's somewhere between the two - there's certainly a reasonable number of people about, but we could do with more. Some shopkeepers / shop owners are concerned at the effect that ...
2194Melksham Business Map - Chamber of Commerce, Tourist Information and Town Council
Melksham has a wonderful array of retailers in the town ... but many of them are not obviously located and not well known. The three local bodies are putting together a map showing the town, and where all the businesses are located ... and I have spend several hours each day this week walking round ...
2181You cannot please all of the people all of the time
In my role with the Melksham Chamber of Commerce, I take an interest in the business activities in the town, and the various factors that inspire and concern our shop owners. At the tail end of last year, Bath Road was closed for a period and the shopkeepers were pretty upset about it - talking of how ...
2119Make your business a DESTINATION business
I'm writing this for Melksham. And for Melksham's Businesses. Let's make Melksham a town of destination businesses. Are YOU running a business that trades in Melksham? If you are, then read on - there's something in this for you AND there's something in this for the town. And - together - it's for ...
2111Business Networking for Melksham - 23rd April
Melksham Chamber of Commerce and Industry is pleased to announce a series of networking events ... specially for Melksham's businesses. * Make new contacts in other Melksham businesses and exchange information. * Learn how local government changes will effect Melksham businesses. * Recession-beating ...
2095Blue Ridge and Melksham Chambers of Commerce
Seeing a sign marked "Fannin County - Chamber of Commerce" at the roadside here in Blue Ridge, Georgia, and being elected within the last few months as the President of Melksham's Chamber of Commerce on a platform of "Let's have this Chamber be a really effective voice and help for the businesses of ...
2043Confidence, Customer Service and Tourism in Melksham
I was very disappointed to miss the "business opportunities / where do we go from here" meeting in Melksham last week - organised by the Town Council and with support from many including the Chamber of Commerce. But Lisa (who is on The Chamber Committee) did go along, listened, let me know what happened ...
1507Comments on proposed Asda Superstore for Melksham
I welcome the proposal in principle but - oh dear - what a poor application in terms of traffic, in terms of safe access by anything other than private car, and what a lost opportunity to provide decent access if it were to be accepted in its current form. Please have a look at my draft - following ...
1892Melksham Chamber of Commerce and Industry
I'm passionate about Melksham - it's a great place to live and a great place to do business, and Lisa and I, although we were newcomers in 1999, feel greatly welcomed here. And I hope that we have given, and will continue to give, something back as part of the community. We bring visitors to the town ...
1987One Cheer for Local Democracy - Asda in Melksham
On Thursday evening, Lisa and I attended the Planning Committee Meeting of West Wiltshire District Council. Sounds boring, doesn't it? Well - it wasn't; a big decision to be made with regard to a new Asda supermarket to share a site on the edge of the town with Countrywide Farmers. There were two ...
1979Looking forward, in Melksham, in 2009
Late in 2008, I was delighted and honoured to be elected the President of the Melksham Chamber of Commerce and Industry - something of a figurehead role in which I can listen to the views of businesses in the town, and advocate the shared business views both within the town and further afield. Here, ...
1934Lidl opens in Melksham
Now here's an odd morning for you; in my recently elected role of President of Melksham Chamber of Commerce and Industry, I was invited to attend - "in chains" no less - the opening of the new Lidl store that re-extends the Town Centre across the river Avon. And indeed I was very happy to do so; Melksham ...
1904Ruby, Perl, Linux, MySQL - some training notes
We have just come to the end of a solid 12 days of training ... and we are just getting ready for the next week, with delegates arriving this evening. There's a lot going on behind the scenes, even over this weekend, with the hotel to be prepared as well as the training course. (Picture - our clean ...
1881Wiltshire Council says - part 1
Last night, Lisa and I attended the annual budget 'consultation' evening arranged by the Wessex Federation of Chambers of Commerce with Wiltshire (County) Council. It was our second year at the event ... last year we had come away very depressed indeed, but this year was rather better - partly because ...
1792All the pieces fall into place - hotel and courses
It's when the best-laid plans start to come together that you think "Yes - this is working" - and some of these best laid plans have come together for the public Python course just completed. Quite apart from the courses (where things usually come together very well almost - dare I say it - as a matter ...
1748Hotel room prices - Melksham, Wiltshire
Like other businesses, we are seeing some of our costs rising at present rather faster than has happened in the recent past. However, I am happy to announce that hotel room prices, and training course prices, will remain unchanged for the rest of the year. We review prices annually (at the end of the ...
Summer came at the start of this week ... here are Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday pictures - at the Barge at Seend, with the Chamber of Commerce meeting in the garden at Well House Manor, and at lunch on the Python course on Wednesday when we couldn't resist grabbing a picnic and going and seeing the ...
1633Changing a screen saver from a web page (PHP, Perl, OSX)
Here's a challenge. I want to change the screen saver on a mac mini, running OSX, from a browser anywhere in the world. You may well ask why ... the screen of the mac mini is to be visible at Well House Manor where it will provide an information screen at the front door when it's not otherwise in ...
1504Flooding by Asda-s proposed new supermarket
It's been raining heavily over the last couple of days and, once again, the river has burst its banks to for what we call Lake Melksham. The corner by "Countrywide Farmers" is flooded yet again ... This is the site where Asda have their planning application in to build a store - something I've written ...
1476Shopping for Christmas and looking forward
It's mid December and we're back from a record shopping session at Tesco. Life has been just so busy of late that we haven't had the time to do replenish our supplies of tins and packets and the meals we've been having have been more weird, more wonderful, and more eaten-out or take-away than I care ...
1432Wiltshire County Council - Budget Consultation
Last night, I attended a Wiltshire County Council Budget Consultation meeting hosted by the Wessex Association of Chambers of Commerce. The meeting was billed as "an opportunity to meet the leader of Wiltshire Council [Jane Scott], the Chief Executive [Keith Robinson] and the county's chief financial ...
1250Business speed networking - a place tonight!
Tonight is our Melksham Speed Networking Evening for local businesses to get together, spend a just a couple of minutes introducing themselves, and then seeing how and if they should be working together. "It's amazing what you can find in Melksham" we always say, and we're also reminded that even local ...
1223Asda opening large new store in Melksham
Breaking News in Melksham is that Asda, the supermarket chain, is looking to build a large supermarket with 28000 square feet, 250 parking spaces and create 300 jobs on the outskirts of the town at "West Country Farmers" near the railway. Currently, we have a smaller Sainsbury's and a Somerfield in the ...
717A customer service company
"We're a customer service company who happens to be in the computer training industry". So said the sign stuck on the wall at a training centre where I was a guest presenter a few weeks ago. The words were the right ones for them, and they're right for us too, but their actions based on those words were ...
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