TRADE: Simon Boyd, managing director of Reid Steel

REIDsteel managing director Simon Boyd is set to appear at a major fringe event alongside the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester.

He will sit on a panel with former Trade Secretary Peter Lilley and Yeovil MP Marcus Fysh to debate British trade after Brexit.

It is one of three fringe events being held by the Global Britain group on Monday September 30 at Manchester’s Free Trade Hall.

Mr Boyd, who sits on the CBI’s manufacturing council, said: “This is the perfect opportunity to bang the drum for free trade within earshot of those in power.

“Brexit gives us a once in a generation opportunity to redefine our global trading relationships and prosper on the world stage.”

Mr Boyd wrote the forward to a ‘Fact not Friction’ paper by Global Britain and the European Research Group, which was launched in November of last year by MPs including David Davis and Jacob Rees-Mogg.

The Conservative Party Conference is being held from September 29 to October 2. The fringe event, held outside the conference, is timed to co-incide with the party’s dedicated ‘Business Day’ on Monday September 30.

Mr Boyd said: “The fringe event comes at a crunch time for Brexit.

“A deal would be better than no deal but not one which ties us to the single market and customs union.

“If we do have a no-deal Brexit the mid to long terms benefits will far outweigh any minimal, short term disruption which may occur.

“A proper Brexit will allow us to strike our own trade deals, boost exports, improve productivity and boost our economy. Ultimately we have nothing to fear but fear itself. “

Other speakers during the day will include historian Professor David Starkey and American author Peggy Grande, who was executive assistant to former US president Ronald Reagan.

There will also be a discussion about the Irish economy.

REIDsteel is based in Christchurch. Thanks to its in-house capabilities and expertise, it is regularly contracted to design, manufacture and supply complete steel structures including the cladding, glazing, louvres and staircases for projects anywhere in the UK, Europe and across the world.

It has exported to more than 140 countries to date and celebrates its centenary this year.