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Downtown is Twenty – Sean Keyes

As Downtown celebrates its twentieth year in business in 2023, we have asked people from across the DIB network, old and new, to offer their thoughts, reflections, and memories of the ‘business club with attitude’.

Sean Keyes, managing director of structural and civil engineers Sutcliffe reflects on twenty years of Downtown in Business.

Downtown has been part of the Liverpool skyline for the last 20 years. It has had a huge impact by bringing likeminded people together during this time which has benefited the business community and has been particularly important to me at a really influential part of my career. The range of people that Frank has introduced me to is phenomenal including the Northern City Regional Mayors to Members of Parliament and possibly, the next Prime Minister. Whilst these meetings have been particularly interesting to understand our political landscape, the more relevant business related contacts have been major construction developers, contractors, architects and the like. Over the previous years Frank has always been the first person to call when there is a political fall-out which could impact business and as ever this is always solid and accurate advice.

Just like a fine wine, the organisation is getting better with age. I truly believe that we should enjoy what we do as this is good for both the soul and for business. Its clear that Downtown is about having fun, making great business connections and simply making things happen.

The highlights for me have been the City of Liverpool Business Awards, Women in Business Awards, trips to London, Birmingham, Wolverhampton, Manchester and in 2021, during Covid, the only event that took place in the UK was at the Liverpool ACC organised by Downtown. We did have a few crazy rules, but it worked.

So massive congratulations to Frank, Chris and the team for all their hard work and dedication over the past 20 years.

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