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News & Blog

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News & Blog

An Inspiring Connection between Business Fours and The Yard

Posted: 19th July 2017

This month, we’re inviting Edinburgh Chamber of Commerce members to share their #MyEdinChamber stories.

We pride ourselves on providing a platform for businesses to create high-quality connections – through our member database, or face to face at one of our many networking events. We love to see our members connect and collaborate.

One such example is the partnership formed between Business Fours and The Yard. We invited John McClarey of Business Fours, and Anna Robinson of The Yard to share their experience and their story.

1. Why did you both join the Chamber?

John: I joined the chamber having been a member at a previous job and found the events very beneficial. I rejoined to meet new local companies and connect with the Edinburgh business scene as well as avail of the mentoring service the Chamber provides. I try to get along to the events regularly and enjoy meeting and engaging with like-minded members seeking to grow their business.

Anna: The Yard joined the chamber so we could meet new people across the business sector within Edinburgh to raise awareness of our work as well as build links with new people to support our work. The events and the training courses that the chamber offer was also a good incentive to join.

2. How did this partnership begin?

John: I attended a speed networking event and met the Celine from the Yard at the event, we had a great chat over breakfast before the networking began and I was really impressed by the fantastic work the Yard are involved in. Celine suggested I came down to see the facilities, which I did and also invited me down to their fantastic Boundaries Edge course which I would highly recommend. I was hugely impressed by their work and the passion they have for enhancing the lives of not just the children who use their services but also providing a support network for parents to share experiences with other families with children with complex needs. We were delighted to support their work through Business Fours and hope we did a small bit to raise the profile of a wonderful organisation.

Anna: As John has already mentioned, Celine Sinclair, Chief Executive at The Yard, met John at a speed networking event hosted by the chamber. It was fantastic that John came to visit The Yard and also attend the ‘Competitive Edge’ course which is a course run by Boundaries Edge at The Yard and is a free course offered to people across the business sector. After John attended the course we were delighted to be chosen as one of the beneficiaries for the inaugural Business Fours tournament, which enabled us to raise funds and awareness about our work.

3. What role has the Chamber played in this collaboration?

John: The Chamber provided the platform which facilitated the initial meeting and it’s a testament to the variation in delegates of their events. From their the chamber has supported the partnership through their promotional channels something our business finds very important.

Anna: As John has said the Chamber facilitated the initial meeting and it’s great to be able to meet a wide variety of delegates at your events. It has also been great to get additional PR from the Chamber who promoted the Business Fours tournament and the partnership with The Yard.

4. What value have you received as a result of this collaboration?

John: We hope we have added value to the work of the Yard and will continue to support them moving forward. We benefited from having mutual clients and hopefully the Yard have made some worthwhile contacts from our events as well as the money raised through our fundraising efforts.

Anna: The Yard has receive financial support from the event, which will go to supporting our wide range of services for disabled children and young people. The Business Fours event was a great platform for us as it enabled us to meet new contacts who we hope will support us in the future. We have already had some sign ups to our next Boundaries Edge course in September as a result!

5. What do you love most about your membership?

John: It’s a toss up between the networking events and access to such a wide variety of clients and the mentoring scheme, both have been hugely beneficial to our business since we launched.

Anna: The opportunities that the Chamber membership gives The Yard to raise our profile as a charity in Edinburgh is what we love most about the membership. This includes the networking events, talks as well as the opportunity to speak at the Women in Business event earlier this year. The wide variety of businesses and events that the Chamber run makes it beneficial to be a member.


Over the month of July, Edinburgh Chamber of Commerce are exploring stories of success that our members have had through their membership with us. We’re inviting all members of the Edinburgh Chamber, small and large, to share their news of partnerships, business wins, and collaborations.

Share your story on social media using the hashtag #MyEdinChamber, or email our Marketing team to be in to win fantastic prizes from fellow members Ten Hill Place courtesy of Surgeon’s Hall, and G&V Hotel.

For more details, get in touch with Emma Reid or Daniel Tipping in the Marketing & Communications team.

Business Comment

Business Comment is the Edinburgh Chamber of Commerce’s bi-monthly magazine. It provides insight on Edinburgh’s vibrant business community, with features on the city’s key sectors, interviews with leading figures and news on new business developments in the capital.
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