Scholarship winners announced for Oxford Summer School

Eleven independent retailers have won prestigious scholarships to attend the Oxford Summer School, worth nearly £2,000 each.

Some of retail’s top managers will come together to learn and be inspired at the renowned retail managers’ training course this August. The Summer School, at Oxford University’s Keble College, takes place over seven intensive days between 20th and 26th August. It offers an excellent opportunity for retailers from around the country to build on their practical knowledge, with essential lessons from some of the top retailers in the UK.

Skillsmart Retail partnered with the Retail Trust to offer eleven free scholarship places for this year’s event, run by the British Independent Retailers Association (bira). The bursaries are exclusively available to retailers with fewer than 1,000 employees – helping to give independent retailers a boost in the current difficult trading conditions.

Now in its 82nd year, the Oxford Summer School will bring together a first class line-up of experienced retailers including Marco Capello, Chairman of Liberty, Beverley Aspinall, Managing Director of Fortnum and Mason and Tony Wheeler, Managing Director of Peter Jones, part of the John Lewis Partnership to share their invaluable experience in retailing with the delegates.

In the audience for this excellent line-up will be the scholarship winners:

Susan Gilmour, Winchester Cathedral, Winchester

Janine Tozer, Bath Pet Centre, Somerset

Katrin McLaren, Cargo, Kingsclere, Berkshire

Vicky Alder, Macsamillion Ltd, Oxford

Darren Brooks, Notcutts Garden Centres, Norwich

Matthew Ellis, Notcutts Garden Centres, Maidstone, Kent

Kate Palliser, Scarlet Shoes, Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk

Rebecca Brown, T&C Robinson, Stamford, Lincolnshire

Julian Beer, The Van Hage Garden Company, Ware, Hertfordshire

Ben Thompson, Thompson Bros, Esher, Surrey

Vijay Chavda, Valley Foods and Wines Stores and Post Office, Essex

Anne Seaman, Chief Executive of Skillsmart Retail said: “We are delighted to be able to offer these highly valuable scholarships to our winners again this year. The Oxford Summer School offers winners a fantastic opportunity to engage with some of the most important figures in UK retail and network with colleagues from across the industry.

“It has been especially exciting to offer the scholarships exclusively to smaller, independent retailers. Sharing experiences and learning from the best is essential to their future success and Skillsmart Retail is pleased to continue its support for the Oxford Summer School.”


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