INNOVATIVE entrepreneurs and business owners marked the success of a new book, Grow In Wychavon, when it was launched at Westminster.

The event saw MPs mingling with some of the 52 businesses featured in the book, which aims to inspire young people and tomorrow’s entrepreneurs to consider Wychavon as the perfect place to set up a business.

West Worcestershire MP Harriett Baldwin welcomed the guests, including Gus The Asparagus Man, who marked the occasion by serving guests toffee and waffle together with humbug ice cream with both flavours created by Worcestershire's Churchfield Ice Cream especially for the day.

And Mrs Baldwin also presented the book to Prime Minister David Cameron together with a goodie bag of local produce and a personalised football shirt.

She said: "Wychavon has many successful and innovative businesses so it is perfect that the council has found an innovative way to spread the word.

"It was great to see so many people make the trip to Westminster and I hope that they found it a useful trip.

"I was also pleased to see so many of my Parliamentary colleagues in attendance and I am sure they will have been impressed by the innovative things that Wychavon is doing to encourage businesses."

Grow In Wychavon is the brainchild of the district council which persuaded the businesses involved to offer 20, year-long work placements for young people leaving school in 2014/15.

Fiona Narburgh, from the council, was on hand to talk to MPs about the county’s ambitious Strategic Economic Plan developed by Worcestershire's Local Enterprise Partnership which, if successful, will bring 25,000new jobs and an extra £2.9 billion into Worcestershire's economy by 2025.

All in all 30 of the 52 business travelled to London on Wednesday, April 9.

One of these was Ken Felton, who owns Fruit Salad, in Pershore High Street.

He said: "It was a great opportunity for everyone to meet different MPs and to take our book to Westminster to highlight our message about Wychavon being a great place to do business."

Councillor Paul Middlebrough, leader of Wychavon District Council, added: "It was inspirational and proud day for all the businesses enabling them to promote themselves as well as the Wychavon brand."

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