Staff from ‘Wild Elements’ a social enterprise based in Bangor, which is dedicated to getting people outdoors and closer to nature, attended a reception at Downing Street in London recently, having been chosen as one of the 100 small businesses of the year.

Wild Elements, which is based at Treborth in Bangor, began in 2013 and offers woodland based play schemes, woodland birthday parties, bespoke school sessions and playgroups for pre-schoolers.

The businesses were welcomed to the Downing Street reception by Stephen Barclay MP, Economic Secretary to the Treasury, Baroness Fairhead CBE, Minister of State at the Department for International Trade, Claire Perry MP, Minister of State at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and Caroline Nokes MP, Minister for Government Resilience and Efficiency.

Wild Elements has expanded its effectiveness by fostering partnerships with other organisations such as Treborth Botanic Garden and the National Trust properties of Penrhyn Castle and Plas Newydd, where it runs Wild Day events helping to facilitate the Trust’s 50 Things To Do Before You Are 11¾ campaign .

The enterprise has also developed programmes with Bangor University’s Widening Access Centre and local communities are a focus for much of the work of Wild Elements. The people of Maesgeirchen have benefited from some of the skills of Wild Elements.

In the future, Wild Elements are hoping to develop more accredited courses for adults wanting to study horticulture and environmental conservation, they are also planning to develop more training courses for teachers, up-skilling them to deliver more learning outdoors; whilst further developing their partnership with Treborth Botanic Garden and designing a range of learning resources to develop the gardens provision of STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art & Maths) programmes.

Stephen Barclay MP, Economic Secretary to the Treasury, said: “It’s great to welcome so many business owners to Number 10 today to show our appreciation for the crucial contribution they make to Britain. Small businesses are vital to a thriving and competitive economy that is fit for the future, so it’s great to see that the number of small businesses in the UK has been growing in recent years.”

Tom, one of the co-founders of Wild Elements, said: “What a great afternoon meeting so many great small businesses at Downing Street. It’s great to see that Wild Elements is amongst one of the 100 small businesses of the year. We also had chance to pop into number 11 for a panad.”