Kemi Badenoch, MP for the Saffron Walden constituency, organised a day of free digital skills, workshops and mentoring training for businesses in Uttlesford.

The training was delivered by the Google Digital Garage team to more than 29 local businesses at Ugley Village Hall.

After addressing the attendees, Mrs Badenoch - who was recently appointed Secretary of State for Business and Trade - sat in on a mentoring session with a Stansted business owner who is growing her property management business internationally.

Other businesses that attended include Parklands from Quendon Hall, Olive and Olive Interiors, Accuro Care Services and the team at Mind in West Essex.

Mrs Badenoch said: "All across the UK, businesses are adjusting as they operate in a ‘new normal’ post-pandemic, with many focusing on improving their online presence.

Saffron Walden Reporter: MP Kemi Badenoch co-hosted the Google Digital Garage eventMP Kemi Badenoch co-hosted the Google Digital Garage event (Image: Kemi Badenoch's office)

"I am keen to ensure local businesses here in our constituency have access to support so they can too.

"It was great to meet business owners to learn more about the ideas they have to expand their projects as well as hearing about the difficulties that many of them face when starting new businesses online.

"Alongside my annual Small Business Saturday event, Google’s Digital Garage events have proven to be a great way to help small local businesses develop their digital skills."


Sessions ran all day, from 45 minute in-depth training to 1:1 mentoring power sessions.

During the sessions, Google's 'Digital Coaches' show businesses how to grow online - from building a website to creating their own social media strategy.

Shirley Hoy, associate director at Insight Associates in Stansted Mountfitchet, said: "Thanks to the Google team for a thoroughly enjoyable and informative Google Garage event.

"It's great to see local businesses supported by Uttlesford District Council in conjunction with Kemi Badenoch MP.

"There was lots of really useful general marketing content on strategy, goals, channels, brands, SMART goals, and budgets. Plus, in-depth focus on digital and social media, content, strategy, social platforms, Google analytics terminology and of course the fabulous Google Skills To Go content that is available to all.

"I definitely walked away with a few action points!"