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The latest attraction on Hastings seafront has been opened by council leader Peter Chowney.

‘The Picnic Box’ is a refreshment kiosk situated above Bottle Alley, by the weather station to the west of Hastings Pier. It is decorated on one side by a mosaic mural by local artist Emma Harding.

Cllr Peter Chowney explained :- “We’ve got a superb seafront here in Hastings, but we have had complaints in the past that it doesn’t have the refreshment kiosks that other seafronts have. We’re now putting that right!

“The Source opened their kiosk east of the pier in March, and I am now delighted that we have a kiosk to the west of the pier too. The Picnic Box is half way between Warrior Square and the pier, by the weather station. It is a great addition to the seafront for local residents and visitors and, of course, generates some useful income for the council too.

“And the mural is superb, I could make out a number of local characters, including jazz singer Liane Carroll.”

The Picnic Box is run by three generations of the same family, Diane Rann, her daughter Carly Gurney and granddaughter Georgia Hall.

Carly said :- “This is a really great spot, with fantastic views along the seafront, from beyond the pier to the Old Town and to Beachy Head.

“We’re looking forward to a great summer, hoping to tempt customers with our speciality Bubble Tea. And we haven’t forgotten our four-legged friends, as we sell frozen yogurt for dogs!”


If you’re thinking about setting up or moving your business to St. Leonards on Sea, Hastings or Eastbourne and are looking for the minimum of hassle in set up and want ongoing management then check out this video to see why having your business in these locations will not only provide a prime location it will also provide you with a great work/life balance.

If you want to know more then visit their site here.

BD Foods, a Hastings-based food manufacturing business is expanding into purpose-build new premises and creating 40 new jobs with help from funding provided by East Sussex County Council.

BD Foods produces an extensive range of sauces, dressings, dips and soups which are sold to restaurants, hotel chains and airlines. Its impressive client list includes British Airways, Conrad Hotels, Eurostar, Nandos, Café Rouge and Marriott, to name a few.

BD Foods has accessed grant and loan funding of £360k through Locate East Sussex, the county’s business support service. This has been supplemented with an investment of £750k from Hastings Borough Council, all of which will be invested into a new building for BD Foods.

Since 2001, BD Foods has grown from a start-up company with just three members of staff, to its current size where it employs over 100 local people. The company is expanding rapidly and now has a turnover of £7 million a year as a result of 15 years of strong and sustained growth.

In 2015, BD Foods was finding that future growth was potentially at risk. Capacity constraints at its site on the Castleham Road Industrial Estate in St Leonards-on-Sea were limiting production and restricting further expansion.

The company needed to expand. Plans for a new factory were drawn up and BD Foods approached Hastings Borough Council and Locate East Sussex for support. The new factory, due to be completed late 2016, will see an additional 40 new permanent jobs being created and will provide an additional 10,000 sq. ft. of space next to BD Foods’ main production facility. Exactly what BD Foods needs to grow.

John Davis, Managing Director of BD Foods, said: “Hastings is a great place to run a business and we are both successful and happy here.

“Hastings Borough Council has been productive, flexible and supportive with our expansion plans. The town itself has a great labour resource so we never have problems with recruitment. Many people are moving to the area as it is better value to buy and rent property, which means the calibre of employees is constantly increasing. The town is growing very quickly and importantly, there is the space to expand and it is a lot cheaper than Brighton.”

“Transport is a huge part of our business, as we travel to airports at least once a day. The A21 has seen a huge investment and is improving, along with the planned high speed railway which will make trips to and from London much easier for us and our clients,” John continued.

John Davis concluded, “Without Locate East Sussex, we wouldn’t have been able to fit out the new units. The team at Locate East Sussex understand problems, money and business. They really want to help and I am grateful for their input.”

Adam Berger, Location Service Manager at Locate East Sussex, said: “We are pleased to have helped BD Foods expand. It is really encouraging to see a great, local Hastings business thrive and develop strong growth plans for the future.”

To find out more about how Locate East Sussex can support your business, visit www.locateeastsussex.org.uk


The business community in Hastings has come together to push forward a Hastings BID (Business Improvement District)

There are currently more than 230 BIDs throughout the UK, cumulatively investing over £200 million in projects decided upon by their respective local business communities. For the first time in Hastings the business community could have a budget which could be used to bring about change and increase business.

The Hastings BID, to be managed by a newly created Hastings Town Centre BID Company, aims to improve the experience for residents, visitors and businesses in Hastings and to market the town as a great place to work, live, shop and visit. It wants to reflect the ethnic and cultural diversity of the town, provide a voice and support for town centre businesses and lever in more money from other sources to supplement budgets.

“The Hastings BID affects businesses and amenities in the town with a rateable value of over £5000 and the money generated, which could be in excess of £1 million over the first five-year term, will fund eighteen additional town centre projects within four themes” said Cllr Dawn Poole, Hastings Borough Council’s lead member for regeneration.

The four themes are a better feel for the town centre, better connections and communications, a stronger business voice and a safer place.

“Businesses are being encouraged to vote in the Hastings BID ballot which takes place between 13 October and 10 November 2016, look out for ballot papers which will be arriving soon. 100% of funds generated by the BID will be held by the BID Company to spend locally on its approved projects” added Cllr Poole.

To find out more about the Hastings Bid visit www.hastingsbid.co.uk

Hastings Borough Council in its aims to support local businesses and increase jobs in the town has invested in the build of a new factory unit at Castleham Industrial Estate, Hastings.

Built by Westridge Construction Ltd the new unit due for completion at the end of this year will provide much needed extra space for a local business already operating from other units in the area, BD Foods.

Hastings Borough Council’s leader, Cllr Peter Chowney recently attended the ‘topping out’ ceremony; the age old tradition of bestowing luck and thanks to builders when a structure reaches its topmost point. He commented: “This unit is a great addition to the offer at Castleham and we are very pleased that BD Foods will be the new tenants. They currently occupy eight units at Castleham and this one will enable them to expand their food production, creating 50 new jobs in the process.”

BD Foods plan to start working from the unit in the New Year.

Hastings Borough Council announces the organisations that were successful in their bid for the £30,000 Anniversary Community Grants Fund 2016

The 1066 Anniversary Community Grants Fund 2016 grants scheme was set up to help the communities of Hastings mark the 950th anniversary of the battle of Hastings. The fund is to help local community groups to hold their own events or projects as part of the town’s anniversary activities.

Cllr Dawn Poole the council’s lead member for regeneration explained:

“A particular focus for this one-off grants programme was to support activities in more isolated and disadvantaged communities where the main 950th anniversary programme of events will not be staged.

“We wanted the fund to support a range of projects which enabled people to mark the anniversary in any way that included cultural or community events, educational activities or more permanent memorials. The activities were for small groups and schools and had to take place during 2016 within the borough of Hastings”.

The funds were hugely oversubscribed but finally fourteen organisations and groups were selected to benefit from the £30,000 fund.

The grants ranged from £500 to St Leonards Primary Academy for an educational school trip to Battle Abbey and up to £2640 awarded to Women’s Voice for Echoing Jeremy Birch’s One Hastings Many Voices. Their aim is to encourage social cohesion using cooking to bring women together to share skills and learn about which types of food were eaten in 1066. And, £3000 was awarded to aGender for a 1066 Anniversary Steam Print Spectacular; following the battles of 1066 -2016 and how to resolve them a series of print-making workshops where people’s creations will be shown at the Stade as part of Hastings Cartoon Festival.

“We are delighted that so many groups and organisations were keen to get involved with the 950th celebrations and look forward to seeing all the winning projects come to fruition” added Cllr Poole.


i-Rock a new service for 14 -25 year olds has been launched in Hastings this week (Monday 11 July).

The new service based at Rock House, Cambridge Road offers young people help and advice with issues including, emotional wellbeing, mental health, education, employment and housing.

“I really welcome this project which is a vital link to the many services which can help with the wellbeing of young people and I am pleased that the Clinical Commissioning Group recognises the priority” said Cllr Sue Beaney, Hastings Borough Council’s mental health champion.

She added: “As a psychotherapist practising locally I am increasingly receiving referrals for younger teens and am glad the age range has been reduced to 14. It is around this age that many young people begin to suffer from uncertainties and pressure and feel alone and unsupported.  i-Rock offers services that will help young people to make sense of an increasingly unstable world and hopefully prevent the development of more serious mental health conditions”.

The wellbeing of young people in Hastings and Rother is of key importance to the Hastings Youth Council. They have been involved with the consultation process for this new service and were pleased to attend the launch and to support this project.

The service is open three days a week Monday, Wednesday and Friday 11am – 7pm on a drop-in basis.

Stands for the Hastings Let’s Do Business show in September are now on sale.

The event will be taking place on Thursday 29th September 2016 at the Hastings Centre.

What’s new for 2016Levi Roots

  • Levi Roots as a guest speaker
  • Stands starting from £175+VAT
  • Early bird offer if you book by 5th August
  • Two FREE google work-shops
  • 1066 Battle of Hastings theme Archery on site.

It’s a show not to be missed!

For further details of the show click here.

For further information please contact Wes Game on wes.game@ldbgroup.co.uk or 0844 415 2272, alternatively visit the Let’s Do Business website here .

CEX is opening soon in Hastings Priory Meadow.cex logo

CEX buy, sell and exchange a range of technology and entertainment products.

If you are currently looking for work they are recruiting mainly for sales assistants, full or part time.  There is also a supervisor position available.  All applicants are welcome just email your CV to cexhastings@gmail.com.

The new store will be located in Priory Meadow shopping centre opposite H&M.

Hastings based couple Sam and Jasmin Bollen have recently set up their own family run Chilli sauce business.

Founded through the lifelong passion from Sam who has always loved getting his chilli kicks but was struggling to find sauces with heat and flavour.  He started making his own sauce and after a couple of years perfecting his recipes and amazing feedback from friends and family plus Mrs B (Jazzy’s) encouragement he decided to take it to the public. He had finally found the heat and flavour he wanted along with an added bonus that to get this he only uses carefully selected SUPERFOOD ingredients so its great for your health too.

The sauces come in a variety of three flavours, The Cheeky Chick, The Hardcore Hen and The Courageous Cock all with different heat levels.

After choosing the name for the sauce, ‘Mr & Mrs B’s Seriously buzzin’ hot sauce’, designing their own labels and branding, setting up their own Facebook page and finally receiving their 5* Food Hygiene Certificate in April this year their hot sauce is now available in a number of places in East Sussex, currently selling in the Hastings Handicraft Kiosk on the newly built Hastings Pier and the Lime Cross Nursery in Herstmonceux.

The couple also took to the streets of Hastings on the May Day Bank Holiday weekend to give out samples to all the tourists on the pier, and they have also been fortunate enough to be able to sponsor two local athletes mma/k1 fighhter Dinko Pehlic and mixed martial arts fighter Steven Hill. Not only that they are looking forward to being at the Fiery Foods Festival in September this year where they will be entering their sauce in the national chilli awards.

We spoke to Sam and Jasmin recently who said “We  absolutely love what we do.  Our aim is to unify the heat and flavour of our specially selected chillies along with our carefully chosen superfood and organic ingrediants to create a seriously buzzin’ hot sauce for people to enjoy with any food their tastebuds require, even Jaffa Cakes!!

You can find the guys monthly at the Kings Road Market or check out their Facebook page and their website