Dean Malhan is Coventry-based entrepreneur who runs AutoChoice Car Sales, a successful used car and servicing business. A member of Forum since 2004, Dean asked the Forum for help after he fell victim to overzealous health and safety officers.
After an inspection of his car park by the local council, the surface was declared a trip hazard. Dean was ordered to resurface the area, a job which would have set him back around £30,000.
To get the council to review the decision, our team helped Dean to highlight his plight by gaining coverage of his case in the local paper, the Coventry Telegraph.
Following the publicity, the council made a second visit to the site and eventually backed down from its earlier decision.
Dean was delighted at outcome. "It was a victory for common sense. Not only did this change of heart by the council save us £30,000, but it meant I could just get on with running my business, focusing on our plans to increase our MOT, service and repairs business and hopefully recruit new members of staff. That's good news not just for us but for the local economy as well."
"It's hard enough to run a business as it is, without the council adding unnecessary red tape. Councils need to be more supportive of small businesses in the community by helping, not hindering, local firms. These are tough times and they need to realise that pulling through is going to need a collective effort."
Dean believes the Forum gives small businesses a voice, by working proactively on their behalf. "It would have been a lot harder to raise this issue and to get the Council to back down if we had acted alone it's reassuring to know we can turn to the Forum if we have a problem."
If you'd like the Forum to help you, get in touch with us at PublicAffairs@fpb.org
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