Managing Director, Aero Networks
Did you grow up in the North East or did you decide to relocate here in later life?
I’ve been in the North East all of my life. I started working at 16 and haven’t had any inclination to leave the area, apart from vacations.
What do you think it means to be a business person in the North East of England?
I think supporting the area is a big part of the equation. We have employed the next generation of team members that have progressed through the same schools I attended. For myself there is a familiarity working in the area I grew up in. Starting a business with the benefit of local knowledge has definitely been a great help over the years. Ultimately I’m very proud to be from the North East and to be based here.
What is your favourite aspect of life in the North East?
It’s a combination of the people and the location.
Do you have a favourite hotspot for a business meeting?
If its city centre then Di Marco’s on Grey Street is perfect for a casual coffee, whereas the Vermont is ideal for a more formal location. Whilst I’m not a golfer, Close House makes a great out of town venue in superb surroundings.
Where do you like to eat out in the region?
We enjoy the Landmark Oriental on Stowell Street, along with Orchid on the Quayside. The Raj Tandoori on Pudding Chare is an absolute old school gem. The Valley at Corbridge is fantastic, and our local the Wellington Hotel at Riding Mill is outstanding.
Where do you like to unwind in the North East?
There is so much to choose from. Live music, great restaurants & bars. The region is also credited with some of the best driving roads in the UK.
Are the people really friendlier?
I think they are.
What do you think is the best view in the North East?
I particularly like travelling through Kielder on the A68 and the views from the Scottish Borders are very impressive as is the coastal route from Berwick down to Alnwick. My personal favourite has to be the Pontburn Viaduct in Hamsterley Mill, just off the Derwent walk.
Do you think living and working in the North East offers the same opportunities as elsewhere in the UK?
That’s a difficult question. I would imagine that most major cities and areas have their own niche education and employment opportunities, but with the North East I feel there is an unconditional loyalty towards the area. The region is still evolving and I also believe that in the coming years we will see greater investment and business relocation from further afield.
Have you had experience of working elsewhere and how did it compare?
Whilst I personally haven’t worked outside the area, I’ve got some great friends from different parts of the UK. When you sit down and talk about life, I think we are all faced with a similar set of rewards & challenges – albeit on varying scales.