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THE recovery in the region’s economy lost momentum in May as the amount of new business decreased slightly and growth slowed, according to a report by the Lloyds TSB East of England PMI (Purchasing Manager’s Index).

Employment continued to increase, but the decrease in new business in the region ended a six month period of new orders and also contrasted with growth across the UK as a whole.

Steve Elsom, area director for Lloyds TSB Commercial in East Anglia, said: “While the slowdown in activity growth across the East of England during May was in line with that seen at the wider UK level, a concerning aspect of the latest survey was the first drop in new business since October.

“Although the fall was only fractional, it suggests that firms are finding it difficult to stimulate demand amid a reluctance of clients to commit to new projects.”

A TILE and bath showroom in Bury St Edmunds has won a magazine’s mystery shopper award and is waiting to see if it has won another accolade.

Heritage Tile and Stone, in Eastgate Street, won the mystery shopper award from kbbreview, an industry magazine for the kitchen, bedrooms and bathrooms industry.

It will find out in March whether it has won the magazine’s bathroom customer of the year award.

Colin Wareham, who runs the showroom with his wife, son and daughter, said: “We work hard to make sure the showroom is inviting and evolves with changing tastes, new ideas and design innovation.

“It is fantastic to be acknowledged by our industry.”

EAST Anglia timber and builders’ merchant Ridgeons has recognised the work of 58 long-serving employees who between them notched up 660 years of service.

Director Gordon Ridgeon said: “The awards are now in their 15th year and are our way of thanking employees for their long service and continued commitment.

“The Ridgeons business is built on relationships – relationships with customers, our communities and with one another, which is why it is important that we celebrate these achievements.”

LITTLE Squigglers toddler group run by Amanda Wigzell has been nominated for a national award from the UK’s biggest parenting website Netmums.com

The group runs classes on Moreton Hall, Great Barton, Risby and Stowupland.

Voting in the awards finishes on Sunday.

To vote, visit the West Suffolk section of Netmums.com