BUSINESS owners are coming together in Malton and Norton to give the towns “one voice” in promoting what the area has to offer.

A new Chamber of Trade has been set up bringing together previous groups, including Business in Action, Totally Locally Malton and the Malton and Norton Events Group.

Chairman Richard Horsewood, owner of Add Accessories in Yorkersgate, said the first meeting had been very positive and encouraging.

“The aim is to provide a louder voice for all businesses in the Malton and Norton area, which they have not had for many years,” he said. “Our motto is ‘Outward awareness, inward investment’ and to promote what we have to offer here.”

Richard said that with about 400 businesses in the area it was important they worked together to support each other.

“We want to communicate between the different retailers, shops, service providers and larger companies to let them know what is happening and how we can work together,” he said.

“The problem with smaller businesses and different groups is that there are lots of voices whereas we want to show the potential of having one combined group which will have a much bigger and louder voice.”

Richard said that as a Chamber of Trade it also hoped to secure funding to promote local businesses and community groups, as well as carry out improvements to the town.

“We want to make Malton and Norton a better place to visit, shop and live and with a shared focus we can hopefully achieve that,” he said.

“We are unique in that we have a vast army of small independent businesses alongside long-established family run firms, our own independent cinema and monthly food markets which have been a real boom – in other words, something different for everyone.”

Meetings will be held monthly with an annual membership of £60 a year. Regular newsletters will also be produced along with a Twitter feed to help businesses promote themselves and keep in contact.

Richard said footfall in Malton was on the increase, particularity from tourists. “The town is getting busier and we need to build on that by selling ourselves,” he said.

“Malton Chamber of Trade will work to make the area even more attractive to bring other businesses here.

“There is plenty of space to expand and we need to build on what we have and take that opportunity forward.”

Emma Brooksbank, who initiated Totally Locally in Malton and Norton, said: “I believe that this initiative by the Chamber of Trade will result in improved communication, the sharing of information, ideas and volunteers so that groups can become more sustainable. It will change the current position where groups can struggle to survive because too much falls on too few people – and also eliminate the need for people to have to attend lots of different group meetings.”

The next meeting is on Tuesday, February 3 at The Yard, in Market Place, at 5.30pm, and includes a presentation by Malton CIC on this year’s Food Lovers Festival.

Visit Richard Horsewood at Add Accessories or email