New business takes on the nationwide HGV/LGV driver shortage from the heart of the Midlands

A newly launched Birmingham-based driver training business – Blue Triangle Training –hopes to tackle the national driver shortage with its business offering tuition to drivers wanting to gain their HGV/LGV licences. They hope to be able to help the nationwide crisis of driver shortages, which the Road Haulage Association has said will lead to a driver shortfall of 60,000 within 12 months if the crisis is not addressed.

Launched at the end of April 2016, Neil Thomas, who has spent his entire working career in the transport sector, put his long-standing business idea into action when faced with redundancy. The Garretts Green based company is run with his wife Mary Thomas and has created two full time jobs. Decreasing job satisfaction and the incentive of having greater control of his working life provided Neil with the motivation to launch his own business, something he had considered several times in the past. Whilst a lack of business acumen and timing had previously held him back, this time he sought support from Birmingham Chamber of Commerce (BCC) where, with the support of Anabela Ferreira, he was able to take the leap of faith and start running his own business.

Neil and Mary received enterprise support as part of the Start & Grow programme. The support has taken many forms and has included one to one training and well as mentoring and networking opportunities. Neil recognised the importance of having an online presence and thanks to an introduction made via the BCC, he found Google Digital Garage and was able to design, launch and optimisation his own website.

Mary commented, “It’s still early days, but I can already see that Neil is enjoying greater job satisfaction and feels more in control. Neil has wanted to run his own business for some time, we knew that he would regret it if he didn’t give it a go. It’s still early days for the company, but we’re looking forward to the future.”
Birmingham Chamber of Commerce work with a range of local start-up businesses as part of the national Start & Grow programme delivered in this area and would be delighted to hear from others looking to start up in business to see if they meet the criteria of the programme.


Notes for Editors and contact details

1. Blue Triangle Training are based in Garretts Green, Birmingham. Neil Thomas, Tel: 0121 789 9933. Mary Thomas, Tel: 0121 603 1301

2. Greater Birmingham Chamber of Commerce is headquartered in Edgbaston, Birmingham, and covers six geographic divisions and three themed Chambers, of which Birmingham Chamber of Commerce is one. Contact Anabela Ferreira, Head of Enterprise at Greater Birmingham Tel: 0121 450 4235.

About Start & Grow

Start & Grow is a national programme run by Cavendish Enterprise and funded by the Regional Growth Fund that provides a range of pre and post start support to individuals across England looking to start a business. The programme is available to those looking to start a business which expects to employ people from its early stages and where start-up financing is required to get the venture off the ground.

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National Enterprise Network is the only membership body in England representing those working in the enterprise support sector. We believe our members are crucial to Britain’s economic success. Our role is to support their work, promote the results they achieve, and connect them with opportunities for even greater success. NEN membership is traditionally, but not exclusively, made up of not-for-profit enterprise support organisations providing independent and impartial advice, training and mentoring to new and emerging businesses. The organisation represents a variety of enterprise support organisations; including enterprise agencies, Chambers of Commerce, local authorities and other specialist providers.