Updated: Nov 1, 2022
Colleague Box was thrilled to attend the Derbyshire Food Fair at the Houses of Parliament, following an invitation from MP Pauline Latham.
CEO Natalie Bamford headed down to London with a selection of Colleague Box goodies to join fellow Derbyshire producers and suppliers.
Hundreds of MPs, Peers and staff members attended to talk with the producers about their business and sample the products.
Natalie shares her thoughts on the event, meeting other local suppliers, and how far Colleague Box has come in the last two years.
CEO Natalie pictured with MP Pauline Latham - Jubilee Room, The House of Commons
"This was not only my first time exhibiting Colleague Box, but also my first time visiting Westminster, and so I really didn't know what to expect. However, everyone was so friendly and seemed genuinely interested to listen to our start-up story, about our gift boxes, and the idea behind the business."
" It was a surreal experience and one that will go down in Colleague Box history books!"
Colleague Box display in the Jubilee Room.
"When I first arrived at Westminster I was awe-struck with the sheer size and beauty of the buildings, such grandeur, it felt like I had entered a Harry Potter movie!
At first, I was somewhat nervous, the first time you walk into Westminster Hall can be overwhelming; When you start a small business growth often comes in a series of small and steady steps, so when such an extraordinary achievement appears it can bowl you over. Going from a start-up a business in your spare room to showcasing it at the House of Commons is one of those 'pinch me moments"
Images: Inside the Cromwell Green Entrance, Westminster Hall, The House of Lords.
Other Derbyshire businesses including doughnut creators Project D, ice cream producers Bluebell Dairy and distillers Darley Abbey Wines were in attendance offering samples of their delicious food and drink.
"It was great meeting other local businesses and we've already started collaborating with some of the suppliers. I chatted to neighbouring exhibitor Hogg Norton, creators of fruit liquors. It was fascinating to learn about their business and products and by the time I sat down to share my thoughts on the day, a partnership with Hogg Norton was in the pipeline and we've already started to put them forward as options to our clients."
"We absolutely love working with and supporting small, local independent businesses."
"A number of companies I met at the House of Commons are practically on our doorstep, so finding out more about them and building connections was really beneficial. Part of the Colleague Box mission is to grow responsibly and sustainably and where possible we aim to work with local suppliers"
Left to right: Attendees Jubilee Room, Natalie at the Colleague Box display, Hogg Norton's branded fruit liquors.
"Overall the day was a great success, and it's bizarre to think that this was Colleague Box's first showcase event, what a way to kick off our events programme! We've plenty more planned as Colleague Box takes to the road in September with the launch of our experiential on-site gifting - Tilly the Trailer, you never know we might even make it back to Westminster!"
About Colleague Box
Designed to deliver happiness Colleague Box provide gifting solutions, helping organisations connect with employees, customers, or prospective clients. Gifts are fully branded with company logo and personalised message, with boxes despatched directly to home or work.
Organisations can choose pre-designed gift ideas, or curate their own to suit any occasion; from welcoming new starters, awards evenings, direct mail campaigns, or a simple thank you.
Custom gift portals, and address upload templates make multiple recipients a seamless process, whether you’re sending 10 or 10,000 boxes.
Get in touch to discuss your gifting requirements or arrange a visit to our showroom for a brew and some tasty samples!