The HD8 Network started for me when I moved to the area. I had fallen in love with the area by chance, temping for Wesco, and the drive down into Clayton West from Bretton roundabout made my heart sing. Every day I drove down it I loved it, and pretty much every evening I said to my husband “I want to live there” …. And now I do.
As it is such a beautiful and thriving place to be, with different hubs of activity – sometimes hidden away – it is also where I want to work and spend my days, however I have found since moving here it is hard to find out what is happening and what’s on sale. It is too easy in this world to revert to google and end up finding what you want on Amazon, at Supermarket, internet delivery service or similar. Wouldn’t it be great instead to keep the money and the activity within the area?
I, run another business – marketing; assisting small businesses, and like many other business owners I find myslef travelling distances, outside of the HD8 area, and even working virtually, with customers and suppliers outside of this area. Wouldn’t it be great if we didn’t have to travel, if we didn’t want?
Each of our wonderful and vibrant villages have multiples of community groups, exercise classes, sporting matches, WI, Men’s Sheds, library kids reading events, school fairs and so on, that are desperate for committee members, speakers, volunteers, attendees and ticket buyers. And there is apparently a lot of talk about isolation and not knowing where to turn or what’s going on.
My vision for the HD8 area is to enable people to find products, services, friends and neighbours. To get people in touch and communicating.
I am an in-comer and I don’t know everything about the area, but I don’t by half love it here and want to work, rest and play in the area and while I am trying to do that, I feel I could also help others while I am doing it.
For many years I couldn’t decide on how to do this. Print has massive overheads, there are two amazing and well-respected magazines that are already posted through our door, as well as the individual community magazines.
The thought came together in April 2013 when I was driving back from a networking event in Brighouse, where I had met 6 people from the HD8 area – which was more than half the people I chatted with. I joked to the guy running it – who also lived in the area – and said why don’t you set up one where we live. And while driving home I thought why don’t I set up one?
I phoned a guy about a venue, I bodged up a graphic together, I set up Facebook and Twitter and I opened the suggestion of the HD8 Network and the response has always been really positive. People asked for physical events to meet people. Primarily the demand has been business related, but attempts have been made in the past to arrange other events – but its just me (and I also run another business and have a family and a life – just).
Following this date, it continues to surprise me the people I unearth while I am out and about that work, rest or play in the HD8 area. It is wonderful the amount of amazing businesses and groups I have come across is amazing. One of the pinnacle people I met was Steph Walker, who was my sidekick, my go to gal, my extra bit of confidence. She also helped me plunge into the world of hosting networking events and created our amazing website. Without her this journey would never have been possible, at all. It is unfortunate that she’s upped sticks and moved down south …. To Sheffield … however if you have an amazing website that needs to be built Delicious Media are your team. They are incredibly busy, but this is testament to their ingenious, intuitive, intelligence when it comes to websites and their dedication they give to their clients.
In 2015, the HD8 Network underwent a re-brand and engaged with serval suppliers from around the area who brought together the website, images, branding including logo and membership packages and changed the HD8 Network from a hobby ….
I have continued to grow the HD8 Network, involving Facebook community groups; as well as Twitter, Linkedin, Insta communities, events calendar, directory listing, news page, membership packages; providing promotion for organisations and events. We hold a monthly network event and have even run two Business Shows.
So this is my story of how the HD8 Network is in its 5th year. Find out about celebration event -18th July at the Dunkirk and about our celebration fun #yourtop5