Madras College Pupils Create Game for Popular Fife-Based App

Fife Council’s Economic Development Service has launched a new Culture of Enterprise programme in a bid to develop the skills of the region’s young people and help them on their future career pathway.

 

The new programme, which combines history and technology and is aimed at senior phase school pupils,  is ‘In the Footsteps of Kings’.  This challenges students to create an interactive game, based on St Andrews’ royal connections, which will then form part of the Fife Tourism Partnership’s award-winning augmented reality app of the same name.

 

Eight students from Madras College in St Andrews are working to create a new augmented reality game for the town’s tourism sector.  The pupils are currently researching the royal historic connections in St Andrews before they develop the game’s concept.  They will then work with app developer, Mardles, to bring their ideas to life.

 

Julie McLaren, Principal Teacher Curriculum – Technologies at Madras College said:

 

“In the Footsteps of Kings allows Madras College pupils to gain a valuable opportunity to work with a real business, Mardles, to create augmented reality media that incorporates some historical reference to royals with connections to St Andrews.

 

“The course is delivered virtually, and it is the pupil’s responsibility to grasp the tasks set and ensure they complete it to a high standard and with deadlines. Already the pupils have improved skills in key areas such as word processing, spreadsheets and presentation software, preparing them for employment and further study.”

 

Ann Camus, Enterprise & Business Development Manager at Fife Council, said:

 

“In the Footsteps of Kings is a welcome addition to Fife Council Economic Development’s Culture of Enterprise Programme, especially as businesses are becoming more digitally-driven.

 

“It is practical initiatives like this, which are vital in embedding a culture of enterprise into the classroom, whilst developing digital skills and gaining an insight into project management, problem solving, team working and innovative thinking. Developing these key skills now, will prepare these young people in their career choices.”

 

The intention is that Madras College’s St Andrews’ based game will go live at the start of next year’s tourism season, and will be part of Fife Tourism Partnership’s In the Footsteps of Kings augmented reality app, which already boasts games at ancient landmarks including Ravenscraig Castle, Lochore Castle, MacDuff Castle and Markinch Church.

 

Work Gets Underway on City Deal Project in Kirkcaldy

Fife’s flagship Industrial Innovation Investment programme has now begun construction work on seven single storey business units on land to the east of Midfield Drive, within Dunnikier Business Park, Kirkcaldy

 

The modern buildings include solar panels and are located at an established and popular business location in the town, close to key transport links including public transport.  The units are scheduled for completion in the autumn, and will boost economic development opportunities within Kirkcaldy, and provide small business space to local enterprises with growth ambitions.

 

The project is part of a wider investment programme, the Fife Industrial Innovation Investment (i3) programme, which will deliver new buildings and serviced sites across Mid and South Fife.  It will support the creation of 1,000 new skilled permanent jobs and almost 600 short-term construction jobs.  It also aims to attract around £30 million in private sector investment. This will be facilitated by joint working between the region’s universities, Fife businesses and Fife Council to deliver high value jobs.  The programme is part of the £1.3 billion Edinburgh and South East Scotland City Region Deal, a partnership of local authorities, universities and colleges, and the Scottish and UK Governments to deliver a 15-year programme that will transform the regional economy.

 

Neil Crooks, Convener – Kirkcaldy Area Committee, Fife Council: “I am pleased that this project is now underway, and that Kirkcaldy is one of the first towns in Fife to benefit from investment from the Edinburgh and South East Scotland City Region Deal.

 

“Our focus in Fife is firmly on fairer economic growth, where everyone benefits from good employment opportunities.  I’m looking forward to seeing tenants getting in and getting going when these units are finished next autumn.  That’s what this investment is really about, supporting growing businesses that can invest in their workforce to create and sustain good jobs.  The properties themselves are being built with future challenges and opportunities in mind, so the companies locating here will have premises that can adapt with their business model.”

 

The Fife Industrial Innovation Investment programme will be delivered in three phases. Phase one, which runs until March 2022, includes projects Glenrothes, Kirkcaldy, Lochgelly, Dunfermline and Dalgety Bay and will deliver a mix of completed buildings to let and serviced land available for immediate investment by new or existing businesses.

 

Altany Craik, Convener – Economy, Tourism. Strategic Planning & Transportation Committee, Fife Council, added: “This project is the first visible sign in Kirkcaldy of the positive changes that the City Region Deal will bring to Fife.

 

“Through the Edinburgh and South East Scotland City Region Deal regional partners will secure more than £1.3 billion of investment for the city region over the next 15 years.  We believe that this can create clear opportunities for genuine inclusive economic growth and investment in Fife.

 

“The Deal focuses on growing the regional economy through collaboration and by being outward-looking, building on the region’s existing strengths in key sectors and industries. Our Fife Industrial Innovation Investment programme will increase the supply of serviced employment land and new industrial, office and business space in Fife.

 

“Through the wider City Region Deal Fife businesses will have increased opportunities to build-on the value they generate from their data by adopting digital technologies, and use this to create new products, and generate both new supply chain arrangements and new business models – creating and safeguarding jobs.”

 

Leasing enquiries can be made to business.property@fife.gov.uk

Involved in moving freight? Your input is needed to help develop a new Freight Strategy for South East Scotland

SEStran and Forth Ports are carrying out research to determine the flow of cargo in, out and within the River Forth Region with a view to identifying what could be transferred onto more sustainable modes of transport.

 

Their study  – The GO SEStran Forth Freight Strategy – will investigate existing freight movements along with the barriers faced by multimodel freight terminals to encouraging customers to switch to more sustainable modes of transport.

 

The study will also assess the feasibility of reinstating and introducing rail freight facilities where appropriate.

 

The GO SEStran Forth Freight Strategy is being funded by Transport Scotland through the Local Rail Development Fund.

 

The South East of Scotland Transport Partnership (SEStran) is the statutory regional transport partnership of eight local authorities – City of Edinburgh, Clackmannanshire, East Lothian, Falkirk, Fife, Midlothian, Scottish Borders and West Lothian.  It covers a region which is of significant economic value to the Scottish economy and is a major generator of freight movements.

 

For more information about how to input to this study, download an information leaflet or email enquiries@sestran.gov.uk

 

Meet the Buyer Goes Virtual

Under the banner of InvestFife, Fife Council’s Economic Development Team hosted a virtual Meet the Buyer event last Thursday (5 November) as part of Fife Business Week 2020.

 

As businesses adapt to how they buy and sell, this virtual event, delivered by Fife Council’s Economic Development Team in partnership with the Supplier Development Programme, brought together 258 participants to create new opportunities in the new ‘normal’. Of those, 60 attendees were from businesses based in Fife.

 

Meet the Buyer showcased a range of contract opportunities currently available in Fife, across various sectors, including construction, offshore wind, renewables, and manufacturing. In addition to a warm welcome from Fife Council’s Economic Development and Procurement teams, there were presentations from Talgo, EDF Renewables, SSE Renewables and Red Rock Power Limited.

 

Ann Camus, Enterprise & Business Development Manager at Fife Council, said:

 

“The coronavirus pandemic has changed the B2B marketplace. We’re all having to adapt, and so this year, we took our traditional Meet the Buyer event as part of Fife Business Week, online, to support businesses to realise contracts in the new ‘normal’. Participants learnt about significant projects happening here in Fife and were able to find out how to be part of the supply chain.

 

“It was extremely encouraging to hear that over 250 participants took part in this event, and from a poll taken on the day, 86 per cent of those, believed the event would encourage them to bid for more public sector contracts.”

 

Norrie Scott of NJS Lighting Solutions, LED lighting specialists based in Fife, said:

 

“I found the virtual Meet the Buyer event very professional and informative. Delivering virtual events can be challenging, so well done to all involved!

 

“I was able to engage in a one-to-one with Talgo UK, whereby I will be following up on what we can offer in relation to the development of the site at Longannet, Fife with the contact details I got on the day. There are tough months ahead for all businesses but positivity for the future remains strong for Fife.”

 

Talgo presented on opportunities to become part of its supply chain for works on its multi-million pound factory on the site of Longannet, whilst EDF Renewables updated local businesses on plans for Neart na Gaoithe (NnG) offshore windfarm, for which supply chain opportunities exist. Similar presentations were made by SSE Renewables and Red Rock Power Limited, with each of these companies, offering key insights into supply chain opportunities and those nuances that could support the procurement tender.

 

Jon Veitch, Managing Director of Talgo UK Ltd., said:

 

“We were absolutely thrilled with the opportunity to contribute to Fife Business Week and especially the Meet the Buyer event. It is so heartening to see the capability and qualities of organisations from Scotland and Fife, which we hope to harness in the coming and lasting years.”

 

For information about the training, support and information that’s available to help you win work and grow your business, visit the Supplier Development Programme website.

Take part in Living Wage Week 2020

You are invited to help celebrate – or learn more about – the real Living Wage movement this week (9-15 November) during Living Wage Week.

 

The annual event, organised by Living Wage Scotland, has a host of online networking events and webinars for employers interested in or already paying the real Living Wage. Click here for more information and to book your place.

 

Businesses who are already accredited Living Wage Employers can find out how they can take part in celebrating the week by downloading a digital  pack of Living WageWeek resources.

 

The real Living Wage is an independently calculated rate based on the cost of living and is paid voluntarily by employers.  The rate is calculated in November each year by the Resolution Foundation from an analysis of the wage that employees need to earn in order to afford the basket of goods required for a decent standard of living.  Currently the rate is £9.30 per hour, today the Resolution Foundation announced that the rate will increase to £9.50 in April 2021.

 

Over 800 more employers in the UK have become accredited Living Wage employers since the start of lockdown, including Tate and Lyle, Network Rail, Capital One, the All England Lawn Tennis Club and Ember Technology in Glenrothes.

 

They join a network of almost 7,000 employers across the UK who are already paying this recommended rate to ensure all staff earn a wage that meets the real cost of living, and covers everyday needs.

 

To find out how to become an accredited Living Wage employer visit the Living Wage Scotland website.

 

 

Fife College invites you to have your say

Fife College values the partnerships it has with businesses in the region and its role helping to develop the local workforce.

 

It is keen to find out how Fife’s businesses perceive its brand, how it might improve its communications with you and most importantly, how it can improve the training it offers for your current and future employees.

 

You are therefore invited to have your say by taking part in a short online survey which should take no more than 5-10 minutes to complete.

 

https://fife.surveyoptic.com/FifePerceptions

 

Please note that the survey is being conducted by an external agency which Fife College has used on a number of occasions.  Your responses will be confidential and findings will be presented to Fife College only at an aggregated level and will not be shared with any other organisation.

 

The survey closed on Wednesday 18 November.

Peel Tech Expands into Glenrothes

Peel Tech, the revolutionary and innovative filtration system business, has relocated to Fife.  With help from InvestFife’s Business Property Team, it moved into new, larger premises at Southfield Industrial Estate, Glenrothes, to meet its growing needs.

 

Founded in 2014 by Malcolm Wood, Peel Tech is seeing a growth in demand both here in the UK, as well as further afield in the Middle East, as the use of its multi-award-winning filtration system is developed.

 

Its patented eco-filtration system was invented to reduce waste from potato and food processing.  In addition to being sold throughout the UK and Middle East to fish and chip shops, Peel Tech’s units, manufactured by Fife Fabrications, also located in Glenrothes, are being put to other uses. The units are being used to clear and collect algae for medicinal purposes, in the green energy and fish processing sectors.

 

The business continues to innovate.  Currently it is creating a new, bespoke industrial-sized system for a client in Dubai which produces around 40,000 gallons of waste water a day.

 

Malcolm Wood, Founder of Peel Tech commented: “We didn’t ever envisage the success we’ve had, but that doesn’t mean we’re resting on our laurels.  We’ve ideas of how we can develop what is a simple and affordable system for new markets like the domestic and fish processing sectors.

 

“We couldn’t have found our new premises without the help of InvestFife’s Business Property Team.  They’ve been extremely helpful – all of them – in finding us a practical base for our expansion.”

 

InvestFife’s Business Property Team, part of Fife Council’s Economic Development Service, has leased a sizable unit to the company for an initial three-year period.

 

The Team can help with a range of business property related enquiries, from potential investors seeking to invest in the region or local businesses  looking to expand.  For more information about its services which include a searchable commercial land and property database, location advice, property viewings and access to desk space at Enterprise Hub Fife, visit www.investfife.co.uk or email fifemeansbusiness@fife.gov.uk

 

Fife Business Week 2020 Launched

Fife Business Week is returning for an eleventh year and this year will be like no other.  Featuring a full week of events delivered online and through a range of digital platforms, it will run from Monday 2 to Friday 6 November.

 

Fife’s main annual business event programme offers a broad range of seminars and webinars aimed at inspiring and supporting Fife’s business community and increasing their sustainability and resilience following the Covid-19 pandemic.

 

Launching the programme, Michael Longstaffe, chair of the Fife Economy Partnership, commented: ” Fife’s businesses are facing challenging times as they and their local economies try to find their feet and start to create opportunities in the new ‘normal’.  We are now entering a recession for the first time in eleven years, the same age as Fife Business Week!

 

“We hope our comprehensive week of online events will give businesses inspiration for the future as well as a platform to network.

 

“Many of our events address e-commerce trading, new supply chains and markets, digital connectivity and adapting to agile business models, all vital for future business success.  I would encourage all businesses to engage in this week of events more than ever this year, to help and inspire them to move their business forward with confidence to meet the unprecedented demands of Covid-19.”

 

Hosted by Fife Council’s Economic Development and Business Gateway teams, Fife Business Week is designed to support businesses to succeed and flourish, whilst helping to make Fife the best place to do business.

 

Click to see the events listing and to sign up for programme updates.

One-stop shop launched for accessing business support services in Fife

Businesses in Fife will now be able to access a range of support services at one single place following the launch of InvestFife by Fife Council.

 

InvestFife unites the various elements of Fife Council Economic Development’s Business Enterprise and Land and Property services under a single banner, whilst working in partnership with Business Gateway Fife, making its offering more accessible to new and existing businesses.

 

Pamela Stevenson, Economic Development Service Manager at Fife Council, commented: “By creating a holistic brand – InvestFife – we are providing a clear identity and access point, making it easier for businesses of all sizes to access a wide range of support, guidance and funding, whilst showcasing what Fife can offer investors.”

 

A new look and website have been created for InvestFife at www.investfife.co.uk.  Due to the shift in online traffic to mobile usage, the website has been built with a mobile-first approach, featuring all the information businesses need to grow and develop.

 

Pamela added: “The current environment has brought about significant challenges for businesses, so there is a need, now more than ever, to ensure that we play our part in supporting local companies, whether it’s to help them to get through these difficult trading times or, perhaps, to seek routes to development or diversification.  We also hope that it will make it easier for external investors to get in touch and get the help they need to establish in Fife.”

 

Working in partnership with key stakeholders such as Scottish Enterprise and Scottish Development International, the InvestFife team can advise across a range of subjects  – on available funding sources, on training opportunities for existing employees or to create new jobs.

 

Information can also be provides about employment land and properties to lease.

 

Councillor Altany Craik, Convener of Fife Council’s Economy, Tourism, Strategic Planning and Transportation Committee said: “The type of support businesses seek varies so that by offering an inclusive, holistic approach, InvestFife means that from just one access point, businesses can reach specialist advice, whether from InvestFife, Business Gateway Fife or from the wider Scottish business support network.

 

“The InvestFife team can help with all business-related enquiries – businesses just need to get in touch!”.

 

To contact InvestFife, email fifemeansbusiness@fife.gov.uk or visit www.investfife.co.uk

Applications now open for grants from the UK Government’s Kickstart Scheme

Looking to create job placements for young people?

 

You may be eligible for grant support from the Government’s newly launched Kickstart Scheme.

 

The Kickstart Scheme supports new 6-month job placements for young people aged between 16 and 24 who are receiving Universal Credit and at risk of long-term unemployment.

 

Funding from the scheme  is available to cover 100% of the relevant National Minimum Wage for 25 hours a week, plus associated employer National Insurance contributions and employer minimum automatic contributions.  There is also £1,500 per job placement available for set-up costs, support and training.

 

Employers who can offer 30 or more placements can apply directly to the fund.

 

Businesses who can offer fewer than 30 placements can partner with other employers to reach the minimum number.  Fife Chamber of Commerce can help put you in touch with other employers – click for more information or email alan.mitchell@fifechamber.co.uk .