One year on, HRH The Prince of Wales visits Croydon

HRH The Prince of Wales and HRH The Duchess of Cornwall see first hand how the Prince’s Charities are making a difference during Croydon visit one year after the riots.

"Today's visit will help us create vital connections between businesses of all sizes and voluntary groups." David Knight, Croydon Business Connector.

 His Royal Highness met Business in the Community’s Business Connector David Knight, who started working in Croydon this summer. David has already made valuable links with key local organisations including Croydon Police, Croydon Council and Croydon Voluntary Action Centre, where the royal visit began.

David accompanied their Royal Highnesses as they spent time with local traders, West Croydon Community Forum members and residents affected by last year’s riots. David is seconded full time from his role as a Senior Manager at Lloyds Banking Group as a Business Connector, building partnerships and brokering connections to tackle social issues in Croydon.

"There is a huge opportunity for business to play a bigger role in the needs of the community. There is a massive opportunity for business to play a bigger role in communities of need,” David commented. “Today's visit will help us create vital connections between businesses of all sizes and voluntary groups and build lasting relationships in the community."

His focus is on working with local businesses and community groups to foster enterprise, and help young people develop their business skills and access to opportunities in the workplace. He will also be helping those traders still struggling to restore their businesses and supporting groups like the West Croydon Community Forum.

As the royal visitors departed the Centre, they were entertained by steel bands, African drummers and a full gospel choir – participants in a carnival planned by the Community Forum for that Sunday.

They then went onto visit Croydon College, before meeting stallholders and entrepreneurs at Surrey Street market, where His Royal Highness also met Mary Portas, Government advisor on the High Street.  Surrey Street is one of 27 areas selected for “Portas pilot” schemes to revitalise high streets. BITC are working with Ms Portas to manage and broker business engagement and support to these areas.

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