The Self Help Group was originally set up in 2006 to discuss how SMEs could deal with the REACH regulations. The founding members were Darrell Nash, MD and owner, Albion Dyestuffs Ltd; Stefan Srutek, HSE Manager, Stephenson Group Ltd; and Janet Greenwood (then Murfin), TT Environmental Ltd. Janet brought Stefan and Darrell together as the only two clients of TT Environmental Ltd who were worried about REACH before it was due to be implemented in 2008.
The group started to grow as REACH started to be implemented, providing a private discussion forum to add to advice sessions set up by Yorkshire Chemical Focus Ltd (at the time, a grant funded quango). Over the years, the group has grown in size and scope, and we currently have over 50 member companies.
We have a range of company sizes, from companies with a few employees up to multi-nationals. This gives the group a broad spread of experiences and opinions, and means that the group is not just SMEs complaining about large companies, or vice versa. Although there are many dyestuff company members (because of the large number in West Yorkshire), there are also general chemical companies, and we welcome members from any sector who are directly affected by REACH and/or CLP. Members attend meetings from as far away as South Wales.
How we are funded. The group has always worked on a shared-cost basis, and do not receive any funding from the UK government or the EU. TT Environmental Ltd provide the secretarial services to run the group, on a pro bono basis. Any surplus from meeting costs is used for speakers expenses, or occasionally to defray TT Environmental Ltd's expenses.
Code of conduct and group rules. As the group grew, the Steering Group was formed, and group rules and the Anti-Competition Policy were written (see left). The Steering Group members' biographies are given below.
Steering Group, 2018 - 19
Julian Sarkar, Chairman
MD, Zanos Ltd
Julian is the founder of Zanos, and is currently working towards his retirement. In the meantime, as a long-standing member of the group, we have twisted his arm to chair our meetings, which he does very effectively.
Lisa Hutton, Member
Regulatory Affairs, Nufarm Ltd
Lisa has worked at AH Marks and now Nufarm dealing with pesticide regulations and the REACH regulation for some time.
Her advice on general chemistry and pesticides is invaluable for the group.
Neil Hollis, Member
Regulatory Affairs, BASF
Neil is a chemist who has worked at CIBA/ BASF in Regulatory Affairs for some time, and regularly works in Germany.
He gives the group a valuable insight into large company thinking, which is often differs with how SMEs approach regulations, especially REACH.
If there is an idea which both large and small companies can agree on, it's usually a good one.
Jonathan Dale, Member
Jonathan was co-opted onto the Steering Committee, as his advice to the group has been consistently excellent over the years, and he is very committed to getting as many UK companies, particularly SMEs, through the REACH process as possible.
Mick Goodwin, Member
Regulatory Affairs, Milliken Industrial
Mick is a trained chemist who worked at John Hogg Specialities until recently.
As we're all getting older, we thought we needed some younger brains around.
Caroline Simpson, Member
Regulatory Affairs, DCC Ltd/ Gemini Dispersions
Caroline has a degree in Analytical Chemistry from Leeds and graduated in Management from Huddersfield.
She has over years 30 year experience in the coatings and colour industry, including 18 years at Clariant, eight years at Union Colours, and is now at Dominion Colour/ Gemini Dispersions.
Janet Greenwood, Secretary and co-founder
Owner and MD, TT Environmental Ltd
Janet, a trained soil scientist who has worked as an industrial chemist, set up TT Environmental in 2001 and has a successful environmental and chemical safety consultancy "helping industry protect the environment".
In 2006, she helped found the Self Help Group on the grounds of enlightened self-interest - if the chemical industry is destroyed through REACH, her business would be badly affected.
Conflict of Interest Policy v1.3, 29th September 2015
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(Retired Chairman and co-founder, 18th May 1939 - 16th February 2021)
Formerly Albion Dyestuffs Ltd, later S D Nash.
Darrell Nash was a chemical engineer who set up Albion Dyestuffs Ltd in 1983 after a career at ICI Huddersfield. Over the years, he built a successful dyestuffs manufacturing business, although latterly he concentrated on formulation and repacking.
Like all small business owners, and true Yorkshiremen, Darrell was unafraid to speak his mind about many issues, particularly un-necessary bureaucracy, and he continued to be a vocal member of the group, despite retiring from chairing meetings, until a few months before he died.