Skip to main content

Safe and Responsible Retailing Conference

The Eastside Rooms, Birmingham
9:30am - 3:00pm
Download iCal

The Safe and Responsible Retailing Conference took place on Tuesday 5th March at the Eastside Rooms, Central Birmingham. This new event brought together experts in crime prevention, responsible retailing and product regulation to give you the tools you need to navigate these crucial issues in 2024.

Content from the day is available on the ACS Portal here.

Back to Events


Eventbright Event Code
Event Speakers

Nick Fisher, Chairman, Facewatch

With a background of over 30 years in retail, including COO of Phones 4U overseeing 700 stores, twice winner of mobile retailer of the year, European Services Director at Dixons Retail and at the same was part of the team that successfully launched Freeserve. Nick has a passion for retail and has a comprehensive understanding of the impact that retail crime has on both employees and the bottom line.

Nick is now Chairman of Facewatch, a data protection company that uses Live Facial Recognition technology to proactively deter and protect businesses against crime.

Helen Clayton, Senior Crime & Security Manager, Sainsbury's

Helen has worked in retail for 29 years and has been a security professional within this industry for 19 of them. Helen’s role at Sainsburys has the primary focus of making a safer environment for colleagues and customers to work and shop, whilst monitoring and responding to security risk that may impact our business and communities now or in the future.

Philip LeShirley, Senior Trading Standards Officer, Bucks and Surrey Trading Standards

Philip is a fully qualified Trading Standards Officer, specialising in all areas of product safety.  

He develops and maintains Primary Authority Partnerships with businesses for Buckinghamshire & Surrey Trading Standards and manages some of their largest partnerships including Shell UK, Toyota GB and Coca-Cola EuroPacific Partners Ltd.  

In 2016 he was seconded to ACS where he managed their assured advice and Primary Authority membership programmes.

Chris Kelly, Chief Executive, Phoenix

With extensive expertise in the Vaping & E-Cigarette sector, Chris Kelly has excelled in senior sales roles spanning Insurance, Leisure, Retail, and Medical industries. Notably, he led the Specialist Retail division at JUUL Labs, helping to shape the UK commercial strategy, and also served as the National Sales Manager at British American Tobacco. 

In October 2021, leveraging his industry network, he founded Phoenix 2 Retail to forge innovative paths for emerging brands in the Vape category. Building an adept team and using strong network connections, he earned the Best New Entrepreneur award at the Tees Business Awards in 2022, showcasing remarkable achievements and inspiring leadership to fellow industry enthusiasts. With an excellent reputation and being one of the most seasoned professionals within the industry, Chris continues to develop new projects that have led to inclusion in government steering groups, thus helping to revolutionise the Vaping industry.  

Ben Selvaratnam, Owner, Freshfields Market

Benedict Selvaratnam is the owner of Freshfields Market, a family-run convenience store in Croydon, South London. He has been managing this store for over eight years. Recently, his shop has faced significant challenges with increased shoplifting incidents, with up to ten incidents per day. His story has been picked up by BBC, TalkTV, ITV and TV stations in France, Germany, Switzerland and the US. 

James Lowman, Chief Executive, ACS

James was appointed ACS Chief Executive in November 2006. He has led ACS on political and policy representation, driven a unique research programme that informs ACS’ policy work, launched an industry-leading assured advice scheme in partnership with Surrey County Council, and created a new and unique events programme. James is a member of ministerial advisory groups including the National Retail Crime Steering Group and the Retail Sector Council. He also sits on the boards of Community Alcohol Partnerships, the Proof of Age Standards Scheme and the London Food Board, and is a sector leader representative to the High Streets Task Force.

Chris Noice, Communications Director, ACS

Chris joined ACS in October 2009 having graduated from York University with a degree in English and Linguistics. As Communications Director, Chris is responsible for all ACS external and internal communications, media relations and a growing research portfolio which includes the industry leading Local Shop Report.

Chris is an official spokesperson for ACS, appearing frequently on national and regional radio and television including BBC News, Sky News, BBC Breakfast and the Daily Politics show. 

Chris completed the Chartered Institute of Public Relations Diploma in 2013 and the CIM Strategic Marketing Masterclass in 2017. 

Edward Woodall, Government Relations Director, ACS

Ed joined ACS in September 2009 having graduated from Roehampton University in 2007. As Government Relations Director Ed is responsible for communicating ACS’ policy positions across Westminster, Whitehall and the devolved nations with civil servants, parliamentarians and external stakeholders. Ed consults with ACS members through ACS’ Policy Committee and Expert Policy Groups to develop policy positions and the organisation's public affairs strategy.

Ed has given evidence to numerous parliamentary committees in Westminster and devolved nations and contributes to policy developments across a range of government working groups including the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government and the Home Office.

Ed completed the Chartered Institute of Public Relations Diploma in Public Relations in 2013. Ed is currently studying for his MBA at Surrey Business School.

Rosie Wiggins, Research Manager, ACS

Rosie joined ACS in February 2021, after graduating with a degree in English Literature from the University of Portsmouth. Before joining ACS, Rosie worked as a freelance researcher for several non-profit organisations. She is responsible for assisting the communications and public affairs team with research and analysis, used to support policy developments and keep ACS members informed.


Willem van de Ven, Public Affairs Executive, ACS

Willem joined ACS in January 2022 after graduating with a master’s degree in the History of War from King’s College London. Previously, Willem worked in administration for the NHS and as a part-time journalist. He is a member of the public affairs team and leads on crime, environmental and fuel policy.

Daniel Askew, Public Affairs Executive, ACS

Daniel joined ACS in February 2022, after graduating with a master’s degree in International Relations from Newcastle University. Before joining ACS, Daniel worked as a research assistant at Newcastle University, working on projects associated with the UN’S Sustainable Development Goals. As Public Affairs Executive, his key policy areas are obesity, alcohol and tobacco. Daniel is responsible for consulting members on key policy developments and responding to government consultations.

David McCrossen, Deputy General Secretary, USDAW

I was appointed an Area Organiser in 1989 and had day to day responsibility for Sussex. I became Deputy Regional Secretary for our Eastern Region (which covers most of London and the home countries) in 2006 and stepped up to Regional Secretary of the same Region in 2014.

I was elected Deputy General Secretary of Usdaw in 2018.

In my role I am responsible for what we call organising agenda. This covers recruitment of new members and the training and identifying of reps. In addition, I also look at how we can better build relationships with employers of all sizes. These are challenging times, and I am keen that we work closer with business to assist in change where necessary.

Away from work, not that I get much time away from work, I am a Chelsea season ticket holder. Although at this moment that is not as relaxing as it once was!

Jasmine O'Meara, Delivery Team Manager, West Midlands Police, Violence Reduction Partnership

Jasmine has a real passion when it comes to supporting our young people and helping them through challenging and difficult times. A real understanding of trauma and its impacts is something Jasmine is passionate about embedding across an array of services, businesses and organisations. Believing everyone should be trauma informed, Jasmine has worked with the Violence Reduction Partnership for 3 years and covers Birmingham, Solihull, and Coventry as the delivery manager. We work with under 25's to tackle violence in all its forms- aware of the rise of youth violence I hope to offer a holistic, public health approach to retail crime.

Bubbly Sandhu, Enforcement Team Leader, The Office for Product Safety and Standards (OPSS)

Bubbly is the lead on enforcement on Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment and Battery takeback regulations. During her 7 years she has completed over thousand investigations and achieved compliance with many business throughout the country. Previously worked 19 years as a strategic analyst and intelligence officer for Prison and Police services, covering organised crime, trafficking, and corruption. She has developed strong relations with other government agencies as well as the recycling industry.

Alan Twells, Enforcement Manager, The Office for Product Safety and Standards (OPSS)

Alan has been Enforcement Manager within OPSS for 12 months, responsible for Teams that deal with takeback requirements for Batteries and Waste Electrical & Electronic Equipment, Restrictions of Hazardous Substances in electrical products, Batteries placed on the UK market, Waste Industrial & Automotive Batteries and End of Life Vehicles. He is a qualified Environmental Health Officer, working within Local Authorities for 34 years, and was Head of Regulatory Services at Charnwood Borough Council for 15 years, managing Licensing, Environmental Health, Community Safety, Car Parking and Enviro-crime Enforcement.

Liam Hetherington, Trade & Legislation Manager, Co-op

Liam Hetherington is Trade & Legislation Manager at the Co-op. His role involves looking out for new regulations that will affect how the Co-op trades, responding to consultations, and briefing out new requirements to the business. This involves not only Co-op managed stores themselves, but also thinking how Co-op franchises, Nisa and other co-operative societies will be affected.

Ian Guest, Environmental Compliance Consultant, Valpak

Ian is an Environmental Compliance Consultant and has worked for Valpak for 16 years. As an Environmental Compliance Consultant, he is involved in the delivery of environmental legislation specifically around Energy, Carbon, and Chemical Regulations, helping to provide technical assistance to businesses ensuring compliance and at the same time helping to implement more sustainable supply chains. Prior to this, Ian worked within Valpak’s packaging compliance scheme for 13 years, including as a data and recycling auditor.

Since 2022, Ian has also been responsible for the successful management of the DTS, working closely with Valpak’s call centre and guiding another member of staff on managing day to day queries.

Avtar Sidhu, Budgens

Avtar Sidhu (Sid) began his working life in software only moving into retail relatively recently. He decided that he would like to enter the retail industry and run his own convenience store. He bought a very old fashioned store which, over its 30 year life, had had little or no investment. Sid was determined to incorporate the latest thinking into his store and so after multiple store visits and detailed research, planning permission for a new multipurpose building with business premises and accommodation was granted. Demolition of the old building followed and after a year and a total spend in the region of £750,000 he was open for business. Sid’s aim was to match his store to the aspirational demographic of his customers and he sees his shop as a mini ‘Waitrose’ with a high quality offer and excellent value for money.

Join a network of the most innovative retailers in the sector
Join us today
See more members
Contact Your MP
Election 2024: Arrange a store visit
Enter your postcode to generate a template email to your MP about arranging a visit to your business.