The Aston Shaw Accountants Best New Business Award chose Clip ‘n Climb Cambridge amongst 4 runners up, established within the last 2 years. Opened on July 2016, and running for only a few months, the challenging objectives they gave themselves, and the position of sustainable profitability and success they have established won the jury over.
Since the opening, Clip ‘n Climb Cambridge has welcomed over 20,000 visitors and exceeded by far the owner’s expectations. Chris Walthew, is at the head of Walthew Leisure Ltd, operating the facility:
‘The inspiration for setting up Clip ‘n Climb in Cambridge came from seeing my then 5 year old daughter, Kate, climb at the Clip ‘n Climb centre in Exeter in the summer of 2015’, he said. ‘I already ran a successful marketing agency, employing 20 people, and had no plans to set up a new business. Seeing how much my daughter grew in confidence and ability during the hour session and the pride that made me feel, instantly turned on a light bulb in my brain that Cambridge needed something like this.’
So he took the leap and climbing sales are over 80% higher than expected. ‘Since our third weekend after opening, we have been sold out every weekend and most days during the holidays. Our targets were based on figures from other Clip ‘n Climbs so had a credible basis, but we have been helped by Cambridge being a fantastic location for a venture like this. We were also fortunate to have opened in the summer holidays so instantly enjoyed a peak time boost‘.
The 20 Challenges facility is now expected to grow by 25% in 2017. ‘We are making a big impression in the world of social media with 5,000 Facebook Likes and 134 Five Star Reviews out of 144, and we have shot up to 3rd in the Trip Advisor rankings for things to do in Cambridge’, continues the owner.
Committed to helping people ‘of all ages and abilities to feel proud about challenging themselves’, Clip ‘n Climb Cambridge also highlights the concept’s inclusive character and ethos, regarding groups with additional needs in particular.
‘Since opening, the team has been moved by what a positive experience our centre is for climbers with a whole range of special education needs. For example, it gets an amazing response from those on the Autistic Spectrum. For this reason, the main charity we are supporting is Little Miracles, which helps children with disabilities, additional needs and life-limiting conditions. We also donate to a variety of other causes [and are driven by the wish to] make the centre as accessible as possible to anyone with additional needs.’
Besides the care they provide to these specific climbers, they run a panel of engaging sessions for a whole host of groups including the after-school club, the Rockstars, the ClimbFit exercise classes, youth groups, corporates and school and home education groups.
Damian Cummins from the SME Cambridgeshire Awards commented ‘there is clearly an abundance of talent across Cambridgeshire and it is only right and fitting that we celebrate these wonderful achievements.’
The aim of the awards being to support and increase the visibility of those “industrious, hardworking and enterprising SME’s in the county of Cambridgeshire”, we can only rejoice and congratulate the Clip ‘n Climb Cambridge Team for their dedication and hard work in such a short time.