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Muswell Hill network group for traders launched

PUBLISHED: 16:47 27 November 2008 | UPDATED: 15:39 07 September 2010

North London Network

North London Network

A HEALTH therapist from Muswell Hill has set up a networking group to help independent businesses share ideas and build the local economy. Liz Bygrave, an alternative health therapist from Barnard Hill, formed the North London Network along with friends

A HEALTH therapist from Muswell Hill has set up a networking group to help independent businesses share ideas and build the local economy.

Liz Bygrave, an alternative health therapist from Barnard Hill, formed the North London Network along with friends Dominique Meeroff, also an alternative health therapist, and Tony Sephton, a website designer, after becoming fed up with other expensive, formal networks.

"Other groups can be quite expensive and they can be very formal," Ms Bygrave, 41, said. "But we're very informal and inexpensive, at £5 per monthly meeting.

"It's a chance for people to meet and share ideas and businesses tips."

More than 300 small businesses subscribe to emails from the network and around 30 people attend monthly meetings in Muswell Hill.

Meetings take place on the third Monday of each month above Sable D'Or in Muswell Hill Broadway and at each meeting, a guest speaker provides advice.

Last Tuesday, Robert Gorrie, leader of the Lib Dems in Haringey, attended the meeting to talk about his success as non-executive director of Ocado, Waitrose's online delivery service.

"The meeting was fantastic," Cllr Gorrie said. "There was a real buzz in the room.

"The network is trying exactly what small businesses need to do. They are sharing ideas and networking."

John Williams, who runs Freestyle Success, a careers and business coaching company, said: "It's a nice, low cost network for local people. It's got a location specific feel and it relieves the isolation of being a freelancer."

Cllr Gorrie also pledged his support for Broadway's Keep It Local campaign.

"I think the campaign is fantastic," he added. "The importance of local traders and businesses to local areas is absolutely fundamental.

"You can't have a successful community without a successful local economy. If you look at the deprived areas in the borough, one of the challenges is that they don't have vibrant local economies."

The network's Christmas meeting, on December 15, will include a showcase of businesses, with stalls, including truffles and toiletries.

For more details about the North London Network, visit www.northlondonnetwork.com

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