Riverside’s Jonathan Oldfield shares business views

Riverside Waste Machinery

If you missed Jonathan’s recent interview with The Yorkshire Times, you can read it in full here… 

Name: Jonathan Oldfield

Company: Riverside Waste Machinery Job title: Managing Director Headquarters: Boroughbridge, North Yorkshire

How long have you lived in this fine county? I moved to North Yorkshire when I was four, so have lived here for as long as I can remember. I think I can justifiably call myself a Yorkshire man as a result!

In your opinion, what is the best thing about doing business in Yorkshire? However clichéd it sounds, the people. I love the mentality of Yorkshire folk – there doesn’t seem to be any hidden agenda, just straight talking, common business sense and a seemingly mutual desire to support regional economic growth.

How would you describe the Yorkshire business climate at present? Buoyant, definitely. I’m continually talking to customers, peers and prospects about the newfound level of business confidence within Yorkshire, and indeed further afield.

And the outlook for the next 12 months? I’m very optimistic about what lies ahead for Yorkshire. I think the county has some fantastic prospects, especially because there are some real pockets of specialisms throughout the region. This just goes to show that Yorkshire isn’t just about beautiful green fields – we have some superb manufacturing hubs, creative communities, pioneering educational establishments and so on. Even Yorkshire farmers are being innovative, branching out into farm shops and anaerobic digestion plants, as well as their usual crops and livestock!

Why does a business like yours thrive here? We supply waste balers and other recycling equipment to clients throughout the UK, so we’re fairly centrally situated to service this business, and can compete on a national level as a result. I think customers increasingly respect the honesty and transparency that comes with dealing with a Yorkshire firm too.

What advice would you give to someone relocating their business to Yorkshire, or setting up a new company in the county? Beware that some parts of Yorkshire can be quite expensive to relocate to, or set up in. I’d therefore advise people to do their research into potential locations – you don’t need to be in a city centre office to succeed. In our area for example we have convenient access to the M1, which benefits our engineers visiting sites throughout the UK, and it is easy for customers to reach us if they want to view one of the new or used balers in our warehouse. Plus we have some beautiful countryside on our doorstep!

Where in Yorkshire would you go to switch off from work? I’d head out on my motorbike and soak up some of the beautiful scenery that we are spoilt with in this county. Hawes would probably be first on my list.

And your favourite restaurant? As a new dad, I think I’ll be sticking to home-cooked food for quite some time. But Wills & Vics (William & Victoria, Harrogate) will always be a favourite!

Is there a hidden gem in Yorkshire that you feel deserves a special mention? There are probably too many gems to mention in truth. However if someone wanted to get a real flavour of ‘proper Yorkshire’, I’d suggest they visit Brimham Rocks – it’s a very rural, picturesque place, and gives me a real sense of ‘home’.

Can you sum up Yorkshire in five words? Eee by gum, what’a place!