Supreme Court upholds conviction in Shane Geoghegan murder

first_imgPredictions on the future of learning discussed at Limerick Lifelong Learning Festival Limerick’s National Camogie League double header to be streamed live NewsSupreme Court upholds conviction in Shane Geoghegan murderBy Staff Reporter – January 18, 2017 1397 RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Previous articleAction from CBC’s 30-5 SCT win over Crescent ComprehensiveNext articleWin cinema tickets Staff Reporter Email Limerick Artist ‘Willzee’ releases new Music Video – “A Dream of Peace” Twitter Print Advertisementcenter_img WATCH: “Everyone is fighting so hard to get on” – Pat Ryan on competitive camogie squads Linkedin Facebook WhatsApp Billy Lee names strong Limerick side to take on Wicklow in crucial Division 3 clash TAGSBarry DoyleDundonfeaturedlimerickmccarthyShane Geoghegan Limerick Ladies National Football League opener to be streamed live Barry Doyle, who is appealing his conviction for the murder of Shane GeogheganBarry Doyle lost his appeal against his conviction for the murder of Shane GeogheganBARRY Doyle will continue serving his life sentence for the murder of Limerick man Shane Geoghegan after the Supreme Court of Appeal dismissed his latest appeal on Wednesday.In February 2012, Doyle of Portland Row in Dublin had been given mandatory life sentence after he was found guilty of killing Mr Geoghegan in a case of mistaken identity on November 9, 2008.The convicted drug addict had been hired by the McCarthy/Dundon gang to carry out a shooting where a rival criminal had been the intended target.Sign up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter Sign Up However Doyle shot Mr Geoghegan as he left a neighbour’s house on his way back to his own home across the road.After he was arrested and made his admissions to the murder, Doyle claimed that gardai induced him to confess.This was one of Doyle’s main claims in his appeal to overturn the conviction.18 months ago, the Court of Appeal upheld the conviction and the subsequent jail term after it found that the trial was conducted properly and the evidence put forward was in keeping with the normal rules.This Wednesday morning, the seven judge court returned a majority decision and subsequently dismissed the appeal on all grounds including the claim that he was denied the right to a solicitor during garda interviews.The judges also held that Doyle’s admission were not made as a result of threat or inducement by gardai.last_img read more

Kerala Gold Smuggling Case : Swapna Suresh’s Conduct Suspicious; FIR Under UAPA Registered, Centre Tells Kerala HC

first_imgNews UpdatesKerala Gold Smuggling Case : Swapna Suresh’s Conduct Suspicious; FIR Under UAPA Registered, Centre Tells Kerala HC LIVELAW NEWS NETWORK10 July 2020 1:03 AMShare This – xThe application filed by Swapna Suresh seeking anticipatory bail in the Kerala gold smuggling case is not maintainable, in view of the fact that the National Investigation Agency(NIA) has taken over the probe, submitted the Central Government before the High Court of Kerala on Friday.Pointing out Section 21 of the NIA Act, Mr. Ravi Prakash, Central Government Counsel, submitted that the…Your free access to Live Law has expiredTo read the article, get a premium account.Your Subscription Supports Independent JournalismSubscription starts from ₹ 599+GST (For 6 Months)View PlansPremium account gives you:Unlimited access to Live Law Archives, Weekly/Monthly Digest, Exclusive Notifications, Comments.Reading experience of Ad Free Version, Petition Copies, Judgement/Order Copies.Subscribe NowAlready a subscriber?LoginThe application filed by Swapna Suresh seeking anticipatory bail in the Kerala gold smuggling case is not maintainable, in view of the fact that the National Investigation Agency(NIA) has taken over the probe, submitted the Central Government before the High Court of Kerala on Friday.Pointing out Section 21 of the NIA Act, Mr. Ravi Prakash, Central Government Counsel, submitted that the High Court has no original jurisdiction to consider the anticipatory bail application, and that only Special Court can consider the same.The bench of Justice Ashok Menon expressed prima facie agreement with the submission.The CGC further submitted that custodial interrogation of Swapna Suresh was necessary for the investigation. The Customs acted on the source information that three persons, P S Sarit, Sandeep Nair and Swapna Suresh were involved in gold smuggling misusing the route of diplomatic baggage. Massive recovery of 30 kilograms of gold, worth Rs 15 crores, from the diplomatic baggage addressed to UAE Consulate at Thiruvananthapuram has been made. The CGC further said that statements of Sarit, and Sandhya(wife of Sandeep Nair), have been recorded under Section 108 of the Customs Act. These statements revealed that Swapna Suresh was involved in arranging the diplomatic papers for the delivery of the baggage. That stands corroborated by her statements in the bail application, the CGC said.”Custodial interrogation of Swapna Suresh is needed to ascertain if her involvement in the delivery of diplomatic cargo was innocent or not”, he submitted.Investigation is in the nascent stage. Substantial recoveries have been made. Statements of witnesses have been recorded, which reveal that Swapna Suresh was involved in arranging diplomatic papers for the smuggling of gold : CGC#KeralaGoldSmugglingCase— Live Law (@LiveLawIndia) July 10, 2020He further said that Suresh’s conduct was ‘suspicious’. Customs officials have tried to serve summons on her, but without success. She has switched off her mobile phone and is absconding. He also submitted that Suresh does not have ‘clean antecedents’ on account of her involvement in a previous offence.The counsel for the National Investigation Agency submitted that it has registered an FIR under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act, 1967, on the allegation of “raising funds for terrorist activities”.The bar under Section 43D of the UAPA against the consideration of the pre-arrest bail application is also attracted, submitted the counsel.Senior Advocate K Ramakumar, appearing for the Central Government, submitted that even if it is assumed that the bail application was maintainable, relief should not be granted as the case was one affecting the “security of the nation and its economic stability”.The bench ultimately adjourned the hearing till next Tuesday, July 14, after Advocate T K Rajesh Kumar, petitioner’s counsel, sought for copies of the statement submitted by the Customs and the new FIR registered by NIA.The case is related to smuggling of 30 kilogram of gold through diplomatic cargo dispatched to UAE Consulate at Thrivananthapuram.In the bail application, Swapna Suresh, who is on the run, stated that she had worked as an Executive Secretary at the Consulate office from 2016 until her resignation in September 2019. Even after resignation, she used to assist the Consulate on “Work-on-Request” basis as they had sought her assistance in the light of her experience.Suresh claimed that she contacted the customs officials regarding the cargo only on the instructions of the Consulate General.”The petitioner has no connection and no involvement with respect to the smuggled gold. The petitioner has been falsely implicated in the above customs case”, she stated. Suresh has annexed the copies of email communications, stated to have been made between her and the Consulate, along with the bail application with an attempt to show that she was acting only as per the instructions from the Consulate. She added in the plea that she belongs to a respectable family with no criminal antecedents, and is living with her husband and two children. She also complained that a “media trial” is going on against her. The media is exhibiting her photographs in violation of right to privacy, and has sensationalized the case causing prejudice and harm to her, she stated.The Customs Preventive Commissionerate, Cochin, has registered a case for offences under Section 104(6)(c) and 135 of the Customs Act 1962 in relation to the illegal import of the stash of gold. They have so far arrested P R Sarit, who used to work as Public Relations Officer at the Consulate Office.On Thursday, the Ministry of Home Affairs permitted National Investigation Agency to take over the probe, stating that “organised smuggling operation may have serious implications for national security”.Kerala Chief Minister, Pinarayi Vijayan, had earlier written to Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, seeking “effective and coordinated investigation into this incident by central agencies” in the matter. The case has snowballed into a political controversy due to Swapna Suresh’s alleged links with M Sivasankar IAS, who was both the Principal Secretary to the office of Chief Minister and Secretary to the Department of Information Technology.Following the controversy, Sivasankar was removed from both the posts. The opposition in Kerala has demanded the resignation of the Chief Minister over the case, alleging that his office was involved in it.  Subscribe to LiveLaw, enjoy Ad free version and other unlimited features, just INR 599 Click here to Subscribe. All payment options available.loading….Next Storylast_img read more

Eight police officers injured following South Belfast riot

first_imgHomepage BannerNews RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR By News Highland – April 3, 2021 Harps come back to win in Waterford Facebook Previous articleAlmost 5,000 people facing prosecution for not paying Covid-19 finesNext articleGRA to meet with NIAC to discuss Garda vaccine decision News Highland Facebook Pinterest WhatsApp Important message for people attending LUH’s INR clinic WhatsApp Google+center_img Twitter Twitter Eight police officers have been injured following a riot that took place in South Belfast last night.Police attended the Sandy Row area at 8 O’Clock where a small protest escalated into an attack on police.Rioters threw a number of objects at officers, including metal rods, fireworks and manhole covers.Seven people were arrested at the scene. News, Sport and Obituaries on Monday May 24th DL Debate – 24/05/21 Google+ Journey home will be easier – Paul Hegarty Pinterest Eight police officers injured following South Belfast riot Arranmore progress and potential flagged as population growslast_img read more

Woman airlifted to hospital following accident near Lifford

first_imgHomepage BannerNews Previous articleWeekend scenes in Dublin ‘warrant early vaccination for Gardai’Next articleIreland on track to have one of lowest Covid rates in Europe News Highland Loganair’s new Derry – Liverpool air service takes off from CODA Pinterest RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Google+ Google+ Woman airlifted to hospital following accident near Lifford Pinterest A woman was airlifted to hospital yesterday evening following an accident on Croaghan Hill near Lifford. It’s understood that the woman sustained leg injuries with the emergency services alerted to the scene shortly after 5pm.The Rescue 118 helicopter airlifted the casualty to Letterkenny University Hospital.The woman’s injuries have been described as non-life threatening. By News Highland – March 1, 2021 Twittercenter_img Twitter Nine til Noon Show – Listen back to Monday’s Programme WhatsApp Important message for people attending LUH’s INR clinic Facebook Facebook Arranmore progress and potential flagged as population grows WhatsApp News, Sport and Obituaries on Monday May 24th Community Enhancement Programme open for applicationslast_img read more

Tropics getting more active as summer heat lingers on East Coast

first_imgABC News(NEW YORK) — The Pacific Basin is seeing active tropical development, with two storms being joined by a additional weather system that could become the third.Tropical Storm Erick became a hurricane overnight, with winds reaching 80 mph. It’s moving west at about 17 mph as a Category 1.Erick is forecast to travel west-northwest over the next few days and slide just south of Hawaii. Erick likely will strengthen a bit more on Tuesday before weakening as it gets closer to Hawaii.Tropical Storm Flossie, with winds of 65 mph, is heading west at about 16 mph. It’s expected to become a hurricane later today and perhaps a major hurricane by Wednesday.Similar to Erick, it’s traveling west-northwest toward Hawaii and expected to weaken before approaching the islands. It’s too early to tell if the storm will affect Hawaii.Meanwhile, in the Atlantic Basin, two different spots are being monitored for tropical developments, each of which appears unlikely to form at this time. It’s possible some of this storm action could send extra moisture to the Southeast later in the week.In the Northeast, another hot day is expected on Tuesday, with heat advisories expanded to include New York City and Albany, in addition to Boston and Hartford, which saw them on Monday.Parts of the Northeast could experience heat indices in the high 90s — about 5 to 10 degrees above normal.A cold front on Wednesday is expected to move toward the East Coast, leading to some scattered thunderstorms, especially in the Northeast. Storms could deliver heavy rain locally and lead to flash flooding.Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

Transgender employees: towards equal treatment

first_imgRelated posts: Comments are closed. Eddie Redmayne’s role in movie The Danish Girl is raising awareness of transgender issues. Photo: Focus Features/Courtesy Everett Collection/REX Shutterstock Despite new guidance on recruiting and retaining transgender staff, employers remain confused about the law and good practice. Virginia Matthews reports on moves by campaigners and employers to boost transgender equality.In January 2016, the Government’s Women and Equalities Committee upbraided the NHS for its failure to comply with the law when it comes to catering for the needs of transgender patients.Calling for “outdated and misleading” gender recognition and equality legislation to be reworked, the committee also took swipes at the criminal justice system and education providers for their apparent inability to tackle transphobia head-on.More on transgender employeesUpdated good practice on transgender employeesTake steps to ensure that the workforce is inclusive of transgender peopleDeal with the situation where an employee is undergoing gender reassignmentDespite the committee’s stinging criticisms, this has been described as a “tipping point” for trans awareness, with the airtime devoted to everything from the recently released, male-to-female film The Danish Girl, to an emerging female-to-male storyline on television soap EastEnders.Yet the notion that society – and employers – have done any more than scratch the surface of a highly complex issue is wrong-headed, says Bernard Reed, trustee of the charity the Gender Identity Research and Education Society (GIRES), which offers virtual and face-to-face training sessions for employers across all sectors.“To describe 2015 as a tipping point is a dangerous fallacy and, in my view, you can’t take your foot off the accelerator for a moment when it comes to pursuing the trans agenda. The latest parliamentary report just published clearly states how much major work still has to be done.“Despite many years of solid work on race, disability, sex, sexual orientation and other characteristics protected in law, it’s not true to say that you have largely finished the job there either and to think otherwise is misguided and complacent.”Trans people are protected by two key pieces of legislation: the Gender Recognition Act (GRA) 2004, which allows people to legally change their gender and acquire a new birth certificate; and the 2010 Equality Act 2010, which includes transgender as a “protected characteristic”.The principles of both the Human Rights Act 1998 and the 1998 Data Protection Act are also relevant when an employee embarks on a transitioning process.Yet for the Women and Equalities Committee, the GRA’s “medicalised approach” runs contrary to the “dignity and personal autonomy of applicants”, while the Equality Act, it says, needs to be reworded to include the more inclusive term “gender identity”.It argues that the Act’s use of the term “gender reassignment” excludes wider members of the trans community, while “transsexual”, with its implications of sexual orientation, brings an unnecessary layer of complication into the mix.In legal terms, the situation is clear. Gender reassignment is a personal process, not a medical one, and an employee does not need to have either undergone surgery or even be having hormone treatment in order to be classed and protected as transgender.By living openly in their acquired gender, a transgender person has already made a fundamental social transition – although this can also be reversed without any loss of legal protection – and employers are obliged legally to acknowledge this.Whether it is recognising the right of a transgender member of staff to use the toilets and changing facilities that reflect their true gender – invariably a thorny issue, says Reed – or scrupulously adhering to confidentiality requests and updating staff records, the onus is on the employer.Yet despite the publication last year of two lengthy pieces of detailed guidance for employers – the “Transgender Policy Guide for Employers”, published by GIRES in March, and a government guide to “Recruiting and Retaining Transgender Staff”, produced in November – confusion persists, says Paul Deemer, head of equality, diversity and human rights at NHS Employers.“Although trans has received a lot of publicity recently, it’s both poorly understood and highly complex and can manifest itself in many different ways depending on the individual concerned.”Deemer believes that for customer-facing organisations, transphobia among members of the public can be a particularly difficult issue.“When it comes to a Saturday night in casualty and the potential for abuse from the public, you have to offer strong leadership and possibly even more visible protection to trans staff than you would if it was a case of racism or disability abuse. We have to accept that, in 2016, there will still be some people who have never come across a transgender person – and the same cannot be said of other protected characteristics – yet it remains the role of the employer to promote conversations about the difficult issues and to offer training and awareness-raising.”Although LGBT is a useful catch-all term for staff networks, the “T” in “LGBT” is about gender identity and not sexual orientation, while trans itself is an umbrella term representing a highly diverse section of the UK population.It includes those who identify as agender, androgynous, bi-gender, gender-neutral, gender-fluid, non-binary and pangender, as well as transgender, and it is thought to account for 1% of us in total.For RBS, which was embroiled in negative headlines last May when a transgender woman’s request to be referred to as “Ms” was denied as a result of what it termed “human error”, it all comes down to respect.“Being an inclusive bank for our own people and for customers means having the policies, procedures and processes that you need, and while it’s true that the ‘T’ in LGBT really came to the fore last year, we had already been working on this issue for at least 12-18 months,” says head of inclusion Marjorie Strachan.“We have had to make some very brass-tack changes, including introducing the title ‘Mx’ to our systems as a non-binary alternative, and have also done a lot of work on how a trans customer is greeted when he or she comes into the branch; as well as the dangers of making assumptions about gender from the way customers speak,” Strachan says.Although the transgender community already has a lengthy list of non-binary pronouns including “ve”, “xe” and “per” (short for person) to choose from, Strachan believes that for most large organisations and their overburdened IT systems, it’s more a case of keeping it simple.“Transgender is not a straightforward issue by any means, but it doesn’t help to overcomplicate it,” she says. “By adopting a neutral language-stance policy at the top and ensuring that this reaches all staff in all branches, we can hopefully make things easier for everyone.”Unconscious bias training is offered to all customer-facing bank employees, and, as of last year, the annual staff opinion survey asks whether peoples’ gender identification matches their sex at birth.“Just shy of 400 people, or 1%, of our population answered ‘no’ to that question, and, to be honest, the fact that it was quite a sizeable number was a surprise,” says Strachan.According to the organisation Inclusive Employers, firms that fall foul of equality law surrounding transitioning at work, for example, often do so through ignorance rather than malice or hostility.But if many of today’s employers may be bewildered by the implications of terms such as “pangender” or “non-binary”, the more fluid approach taken to gender and sexual orientation by many young people is likely to have a major impact on the diversity policies of the future, it believes.“The dialogue over transgender is an interesting and timely one,” says director Richard McKenna. “But given the greater open-mindedness of many of the young people coming into the workforce in great numbers today, I believe it is a conversation which can only become broader over time.”For Asda, it is very much a case of learning about transgender issues on the job, says Hayley Parker, diversity and inclusion manager at the supermarket, where around 1,690 employees (roughly 1%) identify themselves as transgender.“The main practical obstacle to maintaining a coherent trans policy across the whole business is its diversity and the fact that we have a very disparate and, at 180,000, large workforce spread over a whole range of different sites and functions,” she says.“But in 2014, our annual ‘Your Voice’ colleague survey clearly showed that our trans colleagues were very unengaged and very unhappy and this really spurred us on to do something positive.”Since the survey, the firm has launched a series of online video interviews with trans staff via its “Getting to know you” series and has established a closed Facebook group, to which Parker is invited. In the process, engagement has doubled, she adds.Although rare, Asda has experience of transphobic abuse meted out by customers and takes “reasonable steps” to protect employees.Any hint of third-party harassment towards trans staff, including pointing or whispering behind a hand, triggers a zero-tolerance policy, which can be enforced by anything from “an uncomfortable conversation” with security staff or the police, to the ultimate sanction of being blacklisted from all stores.“We already had a broad diversity and inclusion policy, but by shining a spotlight on our trans colleagues, we have given them far more confidence to be open about themselves,” says Parker.Members of the social media forum, who are encouraged to talk openly about their frustrations over everything from hormone treatment to day-to-day niggles with managers, have now begun to meet face-to-face.“Getting together really helps bridge the gap between having a well-written piece of paper on diversity and seeing how effective that policy really is day-to-day,” says Parker. Transgender people more likely to be out of work and on lower payTransgender people are more likely to be unemployed and to receive lower wages compared to non-transgender people, according to a… Diversity & Inclusion: Sign up to our free e-newsletter nowPersonnel Today’s fastest growing email newsletter focuses on all aspects of diversity and inclusion.Subscribe below to receive the latest…center_img Previous Article Next Article Transgender employees: towards equal treatmentBy Virginia Matthews on 15 Mar 2016 in Transgender, Blacklisting, Gender reassignment discrimination, LGBT, Employment law, Personnel Today, Discrimination CPD: Transition period – supporting employees through gender transitioningThe process of gender transitioning is complex and not undertaken lightly. As Dawn Wyvern explains in the first of a…last_img read more

USU Men’s Basketball Announces Addition of Steve Grabowski To Staff

first_img Written by June 12, 2019 /Sports News – Local USU Men’s Basketball Announces Addition of Steve Grabowski To Staff Tags: Craig Smith/Minot State/NAIA/NCAA Division II/North Dakota/Steve Grabowski/USU Men’s Basketball FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailLOGAN, Utah-Wednesday, Utah State men’s basketball announced the addition of assistant coach Steve Grabowski to head coach Craig Smith’s staff.Grabowski comes to Logan after seven years on the staff at North Dakota. He helped lead the Fighting Hawks to the school’s first-ever NCAA appearance in 2017.While at North Dakota, Grabowski helped ensure the Fighting Hawks’ men’s basketball squad led the athletic department in community service over the course of the past three seasons.Grabowski came to North Dakota from his alma mater, NAIA Minot State of Minot, N.D., where he served as an assistant coach for the Beavers.During his seven years on the bench at Minot State, the Beavers advanced to a pair of NAIA Division II national tournament appearances, capturing a Dakota Athletic Conference regular-season championship and two tournament championships.Grabowski is a 2005 graduate of Minot State in physical education, after competing for the Beavers for four seasons. Brad Jameslast_img read more

OKEA announces completion of onshore work on production unit for Yme field

first_imgThe project is now moving into the phase for hook-up, commissioning and preparation for production startup Source: Company Press Release Picture showing Mærsk Inspirer on location at the Yme field (Credit: Repsol/Bitmap). OKEA ASA (“OKEA” or the “Company”) is pleased to announce that the onshore work on the production unit for the Yme field – the Mærsk Inspirer jack-up rig – has been completed and the rig has been safely installed at the Yme field. Following sail away from the Aker Egersund yard Mærsk Inspirer reached its targeted position at the Yme field in the evening of 31 December 2020.The jack up process has been completed and Yme New Development project is now moving into the phase for hook-up, commissioning and preparation for production startup. Expected production start in 2021 remains unchanged and well within reach.Okea holds a 15% working interest in the Yme field which is expected to add production of 7,500 boepd net to OKEA at plateau, and 4,900 boepd net to OKEA on average over the first year.“This event represents a major milestone for the Yme New Development project and provides comfort to the targeted production start. Together with other ongoing projects, production from Yme will secure OKEA’s production growth in the years to come”, says Mr Erik Haugane, CEO of OKEA.last_img read more

Zero Deposit claims to be leading cash deposits alternative market with 11,000 tenancies

first_imgLeading cash deposits alternative platform Zero Deposit has signed a deal with the National Landlords Association (NLA) to be its exclusive supplier, giving it access to the organisation’s 41,500 member landlords.The NLA says it picked Zero Deposit after looking at other suppliers in the market and that its products’ regulated status with the Financial Conduct Authority helped clinch the deal.“We looked very carefully at this market and considered the various products available,” says the NLA’s CEO Richard Lambert (pictured, above).The deal follows a similar agreement with the other main landlord member organisation, the Residential Landlords’ Association, announced last month.Zero Deposit also recently revealed that it had signed up senior industry figure and former ARLA President Peter Savage as its spokesperson and ‘champion’.“Landlords have had a tough time of late and have found themselves having to navigate through a pretty hostile market, with ever more changes to regulation and the tax regime,” says Zero Deposit CEO Jon Notley (right).“One area offering some respite is the burgeoning deposit replacement market.”Zero deposit has also revealed that its deposits alternative product now covers 11,000 tenancies in the UK and is being offered through 2,100 letting agency branches, putting it just ahead of its key rival Flatfair, which covers 10,000 tenancies.”Its CEO Franz Doerr told The Negotiator that the company has processed 12,000 tenancies so far of which 2,000 have ended, leaving 10,000 still running.“Adding the NLA to our list of partners is an exciting next step for us as we continue to expand and make Zero Deposit the go-to product in the sector,” says Notley. August 1, 2019Nigel LewisWhat’s your opinion? Cancel replyYou must be logged in to post a comment.Please note: This is a site for professional discussion. Comments will carry your full name and company.This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.Related articles Letting agent fined £11,500 over unlicenced rent-to-rent HMO3rd May 2021 BREAKING: Evictions paperwork must now include ‘breathing space’ scheme details30th April 2021 City dwellers most satisfied with where they live30th April 2021 Home » News » Zero Deposit claims to be leading cash deposits alternative market with 11,000 tenancies previous nextProducts & ServicesZero Deposit claims to be leading cash deposits alternative market with 11,000 tenanciesClaim is made as it inks deal with National Landlords Association, giving it access to over 41,500 property investors.Nigel Lewis1st August 20190471 Viewslast_img read more

Bourne to be great

first_imgHoliday park chain Bourne Leisure had just six weeks before the start of last year’s caravanning season to reinvigorate the bakery products sold at its 34 caravan parks in the UK.The company had come to the conclusion that its existing offer was “old and tired” and failing to communicate the necessary warmth and freshness that should be associated with bakeries. “Bakery sales had become static,” confesses Bourne Leisure’s retail trading controller, Caroline McKenzie.So the company called in a new supplier, Cuisine de France, with a two-fold brief to boost business growth at Bourne Leisure’s caravan park shops. First, Cuisine de France, winner of this year’s Customer Focus Award, sponsored by BakeMark UK, at the Baking Industry Awards, was to help devise a new ’food-to-go’ brand that would appeal to caravan customers during the 32 weeks from March to October. Secondly, Bourne Leisure wanted “fresh thinking” on how to drive bakery sales upwards.The outcome of the subsequent rebranding exercise and shake-up in products has seen a 17% surge in retail business on the sites since early 2006. McKenzie says the results were achieved by root-and-branch changes. “We restructured the bakery working day, turning it into an ’all-day’ operation rather than losing valuable sales during a key trading period in the late afternoon.”The total category split between food-to-go and bakery sales “has now been reversed,” adds McKenzie, with bakery accounting for 62% and food-to-go taking a 38% share. “This has made the whole category more profitable, as more spend is coming from non-VAT products,” says McKenzie.She is confident that the tie-up with Cuisine de France can deliver even more improvements for the future. “By working together closely, we’ve identified further opportunities to drive sales and increase cash margins,” she says.On top of creating a new brand that would be easily understood by customers, there were three other challenges facing Bourne Leisure and Cuisine de France:l to reduce the bakery range so that the more popular products could be baked little and often, to help them maintain all-day freshness;l to supply a range of popular sandwich fillings from a frozen delivery network to give them a two-day shelf life, from frozen. The company says the “all-day snacking culture” at its parks makes chilled sandwiches a major part of its food-to-go offer;l to create take-up among park managers and staff.McKenzie admits that the changes met with some resistance at first, saying: “It took our management teams time to adapt to the change, but once they saw the success of the new way of working, they rose to the challenge. The other key ingredients that have contributed to our success are the equipment, branding and training support.”Cuisine de France was also aware of the challenge when Bourne Leisure approached them at the beginning of 2006. “As a new supplier to Bourne Leisure, we had to prove quickly that we could add value and drive a profitable business through innovation and a fresh approach,” says a spokesperson. By combining our efforts, we’ve been able to unlock the true sales potential of the in-store bakery and food-to-go brand in the holiday parks.”We have introduced a more hands-on approach, including weekly call coverage from the field sales team to ensure all opportunities are maximised, with particular focus on product quality and availability. The Cuisine de France national account manager and the Bourne Leisure trading controller visit the parks together to discuss opportunities at individual sites.” nlast_img read more