Commonwealth medal hopeful James Huckle today addressed the attendees of the Essex - India Summit at Anglia Ruskin university, sharing his experiences of the Youth Games in Pune and encouraging SMEs to sign up to be a 'Friend of the team'.

The Essex – India Summit was a unique opportunity for anyone who has an interest in doing business with India to get together, meet new contacts, find out about current opportunities. 

Marksman James Huckle is one of Team England’s brightest shooting stars.  He has already achieved success, winning several national and international honours setting new British records along the way.

James, a former judo player, had always enjoyed sports but took an interest in shooting when he got a chance to shoot with an air rifle. After watching shooting at the Olympics on TV, he was fascinated by the showcase of elite athletes and he was inspired to follow his dream of one day competing at the Olympics.

At the 2008 Commonwealth Games in Pune Aged 18 at the time, James returned home from India with a hat-trick of gold shooting medals and the knowledge that he had successfully put down a marker for the future. James, from Essex, won England’s very first gold medal of the Games in the 50m rifle prone, but then went on to complete a hat-trick, adding the 10m air rifle and 50m rifle three-positions golds to his impressive haul. But as well as his gold medal winning feats, he said taking part in a multi-sports competition was an invaluable experience.

James told the audience that he has recently been invited by the Great Britain team to train with them at the National Shooting Centre at Bisley, once again proving that Commonwealth experience and success is a vital stepping stone to England glory.

Claire Sandbrook Shergroup 'Friend of the team'Delegates were excited at the opportunity to sign up to become a 'Friend of the England team' - the first time sMEs have been given an exclusive opportunity to back the England team for a modest £5K (+VAT) investment.  First to sign up was Claire Sandbrook, Chief Executive, Shergroup Ltd; who had also addressed the conference about the very positive experience her company enjoyed doing business in India. 

 If you are interested in becoming a 'Friend of the team' read more at  or contact Joanna Robinson by email on [email protected].

Expert speakers at today's summit included:

Dr Bob Hoekstra, Founder, Centre for Business Innovation India, Bangalore
Prof Mala Rao, Director of the Institute of Public Health, Hyderabad
Richard Perry, CEO, and Anjuna Kalsi, Director, India Savvy Ltd
Neeraj Agarwal, Head of Business Service, UK India Business Council
Tim Gore, Director, Centre for Indian Business, University of Greenwich
Dr John French, Managing Director, InCrops Enterprise Hub