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Archive - Sunday, 29 July 2012
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On this day: Accrington | Blackburn | Darwen | Nelson | Football - Rovers news | Football - Stanley news | Fence | Ribble Valley news | Padiham news | Roughlee news | Burnley town centre news | Olympics - local | Olympics - national | Olympics - Sophie Cox | Olympics - Ciaran Williams
A FAMOUS Padiham fuel firm could be saved from going out of existence - by a relative of its founding father. Former employee Stephen Cooke’s great great uncle Samuel started Samuel Cooke & Co in 1845 but the company went into administration on Monday night. Now Stephen, 41, wants the family to regain control of the crisis-hit oil distributors. The Cooke family sold their share of the business in 1991. Stephen said he was astonished to hear about the loss of 86 jobs earlier this week, and is putting together a consortium to buy the firm back from administrators KPMG His grandfather Arthur took over the reins in 1913 and his dad, also called Samuel, was in charge during the 1960s. He said: “The company survived two world wars, hyperinflation, and every other thing that has gone wrong in history. “It’s unbelievable to think a business of this size could go under. There are guys who have worked there for 40 years, people who were there when I was a nipper running around the place. “These employees were waiting on a good retirement, not for it to happen like this.” Stephen, a legal services advisor, revealed he has backing from several businesspeople, former directors of the company and banks. He has also been given a helping hand by Burnley MP Gordon Birtwistle, who took time out from a holiday in Cornwall to speak to Stephen and the administrators about getting the company back on its feet, and has promised to make representations at ministerial level. Stephen said: “I can’t praise Gordon enough. Like us he wants to see Cooke’s name thrive again. “There are one or two problems facing us, for example the family has never dealt with administration before and it can be quite a blind process. “We have to work within a very tight timeframe but we have as good a chance as any of saving the family name.” read more
AN ONLINE florist has come up smelling of roses after being shortlisted for three prestigious ecommerce awards. Padiam-based iflorist has been shortlisted for three major gongs, including Small e-Retailer of the Year, International e-Retailer of the Year and Best e-Retailer Delivery at the eCommerce Awards for Excellence 2012 in London. It comes after the firm received the Queen’s Award for Enterprise for its outstanding achievement in International Trade. Founded in 2006 by David Price and Steven Harris, Colonial Gifts Limited is the name behind familiar brands iflorist.co.uk and ihampers.co.uk, operating both floral and gifting websites in 20 countries and delivering flowers to homes and businesses in over 110 countries worldwide. Managing Director David Price said: “To be shortlisted in three categories is a real testament to the passion and commitment of our entire team. “It is quite remarkable what has been achieved in such a short period of time. “Global expansion is not for the faint hearted but having a local understanding in each country has been key to our success. We have websites in 10 languages and 6 six currencies, with technology being the key instrument to our rapid growth. “Fingers crossed we will bring home some silverware.” The business can deliver flowers within four hours across the globe and accepts over 80 types of credit card via their global payment gateway, which also understands the local geography in any given country. In the UK, iflorist has a network of over 1,700 skilled local florists, each of whom is able to connect to upwards of 20,000 overseas florists. The company employs 15 people and is based at Ribble Court. The eCommerce Awards for Excellence take place at the Brewery, Chiswell Street on October 2. read more