Chamber of commerce set to adopt name change

Portishead High Street in May 2020.

Portishead High Street in May 2020. - Credit: Archant

Portishead Chamber of Commerce is hoping to change its name to include trade at the organisation’s annual general meeting. 

Committee members voted overwhelmingly to propose changing the name back to Portishead Chamber of Trade and Commerce in order to demonstrate the organisation’s commitment to traders in the town at its January meeting.  

Chamber president, David Cook, said: “Historically, the name of the organisation was Portishead Chamber of Trade and Commerce. However, for some reason unknown to me and well before my time with the organisation, the word trade was dropped and it has been known as the Portishead Chamber of Commerce ever since. 

President of Portishead Chamber of Commerce, David Cook.

President of Portishead Chamber of Commerce, David Cook. - Credit: Tracey Fowler

“Research among our members suggests that many of our retailers were seriously disappointed when the word trade was removed. So, as part of our commitment to support local traders and the shop local initiative, as well as supporting our economy in its recovery from the effects of the pandemic, we hope to officially reinstate the word trade.” 

The committee will propose the official return of the name to Portishead Chamber of Trade and Commerce at its annual general meeting in March, when members will be asked to vote on the proposal. 

Portishead retailer, Tanya Marriott, who runs SoleLution family footwear store in the town’s High Street, said: "It did feel a like bit of a slap in the face for traders when the chamber removed the word trade from its name and I for one am extremely pleased to see the proposal of its return.  

Tanya Marriott of SoleLution.

Tanya Marriott of SoleLution. - Credit: Tracey Fowler

“Retailers and shopping locally will, without doubt, play a major part in the town's economic recovery following the pandemic and it's great to see the chamber recognising this." 

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At the beginning of 2020, Portishead Chamber of Commerce underwent the biggest revamp the organisation had seen in 60 years, launching a new website and modernising its approach and services to its members.  

While some of its plans had to be put on hold because of Covid-19, the organisation has continued to support to its members and work with the town council and other community organisations to help boost the local economy. 

Mr Cook added: “The chamber is here to support our local businesses. Our online networking sessions have proved extremely popular and successful and our member interviews on social media are also extremely popular.”