Driving Hastings forward 01424 205481

Empress coaches are delighted that after the recent launch of their 20 seat classic coach its first official booking has just taken place.empress-classic-coach

It was hired by a visiting group for a sightseeing tour of Hastings wonderful sights and created much local interest as it toured the local area sowing the best of the 1066 country.

It is available to hire for that special occasion throughout the year, for further details on this 1960’s iconic Bedford coach call Empress on 01424 430621 or visit their new website on www.empresscoaches.com


As part of its move to provide more services digitally and online, and following the launch of its new customer friendly and more interactive website earlier this summer, Hastings Borough Council will no longer be sending out neighbourhood notification letters by post to alert people to planning applications in their area.

“These changes have arisen from a wider review of council procedures with a view to making efficiencies, meeting our statutory duties and moving to a ‘digital by design’ approach where possible” said Cllr Kim Forward the council’s lead member for planning.

She added “In line with other authorities our budget council on 24 February 2016 agreed that neighbourhood notification letters for planning applications would no longer be sent out. Eye catching yellow site notices will be placed in the near neighbourhood and I encourage people to sign up for a MyHastings account on the council’s self-service system; they will see a list of all open planning applications in their postcode area”.

Information about planning applications can be found on-line and the 21 day period within which people have to comment on applications will stay the same. Yellow site notices will be erected for the majority of planning applications to notify neighbours about applications close to them. Residents can also look up planning applications in their area via the council’s website: www.hastings.gov.uk/planning

The problem with investing a lump sum amount in one go, is the timing of the stock market. If it is high then it will be a while before those investments increase further. Making smaller regular payments by drip-feeding money into your investments on a monthly basis can be a much better and highly effective strategy. Here we highlight some of the main benefits of investing smaller amounts on a regular basis.

Getting ‘pound cost averaging’ right

Investors are not happy when they experience falls in their values. However, short-term falls in share prices can actually provide opportunity and prove advantageous over the long-term for regular savers. By investing smaller amounts every month, investors average out the buy price of investments and benefit from a phenomenon known as ‘pound cost averaging’. This means your investment buys more units or shares when the price goes down, as per the table below and allows you to benefit from bigger returns if and when the share price recovers.

Month Amount Investment Share Price Number of Shares
1 £100 £5.00 20
2 £100 £4.00 25
3 £100 £2.50 40

Based on the table above, the average price purchased over the 3 months is £3.53 per share which is £300 investment divided by 85 shares. However, if you had invested the full £300 lump sum in one go during the first month, you would only have received 60 shares, which is £300 investment divided by £5.00. Of course had the market risen each month, your monthly investment would have bought fewer shares and actually have been worse off than if you’d invested a lump sum at that time. It is fair to say, investing is as much about timing as picking the right stock.

Benefits of regular savings

Some people believe that you need lots of money to start investing. In fact, drip-feeding money into investments over a longer period of time can build a very substantial sum. If you invested £250 per month for ten years, you would have a total of over £37,500 (based on a medium growth rate and a 1% charge).

Affordability – you can start investing from as little as £25 per month and it often costs no more in dealing charges

No fear – Instinctively you will watch the shares as the move up and down and probably want to buy quickly and more when shares are rising and less when they are falling. With smaller investing the money can be automatically taken from your bank account via direct debit and invested every month, regardless of price and movement, which removes the fear factor.

Flexibility – you can alter your investment choices and the amount you invest from month to month. You can even suspend payments for a period if you wish.

The sooner you start the more you will have invested on share platforms, you can choose to invest monthly into a wide selection of investments including, FTSE shares and eligible investment trusts. It’s easy to get started and you can set up a direct debit with some companies from just £25 per month and drip-feed money into your investments. You can also set up a regular savings instruction into Stocks & Shares ISAs, Fund & Share Accounts, SIPPs, Pensions or a Junior Stocks & Shares ISAs with many companies.

The value of your investment and the income from it can go down as well as up and you may not get back the original amount invested. Past performance is not a reliable indicator for future results. Levels, bases and reliefs from taxation are subject to change and their value depends on the individual circumstances of the investor. Please contact us for further information or if you are in any doubt as to the suitability of an investment.

This guide and article are not advice. If you are unsure of that suitability of an investment for your circumstances please seek advice. Once held in a pension money is not usually accessible until age 55, which is rising to 58 in 2028. 

Need more help? This feature aims to give some informal hints. If you are unsure of the suitability of an investment for your circumstances please contact McPhersons Financial Solutions for a free meeting info@mcphersonsfs.co.uk or call 01424 730000.



Hastings residents are being urged to report fly tippers, to help Hastings Borough Council crack down on a growing problem.

Last year, there were 1,712 incidents of fly tipping, costing the council £59,920 to clear up. In 2016 the picture is looking even worse, with 1,535 incidents up to 31 October and forecasted costs of over £80,000 by the end of the year.

“This is a real problem for our communities, causing danger and inconvenience to residents as well as large costs,” said Cllr Warren Davies, the council’s lead member for environment. “Fly tipping is on the rise and with fewer street wardens and police community support officers on the streets, councillors are now the main people reporting it so we are urging residents to help us.

“The online form is really quick and simple to fill out, just tell us where the fly tipping is, and if you actually saw it being dumped then include any useful information such as the time and date or a vehicle registration. If it’s safe to take a photo, you can upload that too.”fly-tipping

You can report fly tipping quickly and easily at my.hastings.gov.uk, the council’s on line self-service system. The council investigates all reports, visiting nearby homes and looking at CCTV and other evidence. Fly tipping carries a fine of up to £20,000, and offenders can even be sent to prison.

If you need to dispose of bulky items and you can’t take them to the tip yourself, Hastings Borough Council offers a collection service for £21 for up to three items. To book a collection call 01424 451077, this will be suspended over the Christmas period but will be available again from 02 January 2017. And from February 2017, residents will be also be able to book a bulky waste collection via my.hastings.gov.uk

If your items are still in good condition and meet safety regulations, you could pass them to someone else via Freecycle or Freagle, or local charities may be willing to pick them up to sell in their stores – try Hastings Furniture Service, British Heart Foundation, Oxfam. St Michael’s Hospice and Emmaus.


Following on from the successful Love Hastings, Love Yourself event held in Hastings (October 2016) to celebrate World Mental Health Day, Hastings Youth Council has submitted a petition to Amber Rudd Home Secretary and MP for Hastings and Rye.

The Youth Council is petitioning Government to appoint a mental health minister to overlook and monitor mental health and ensure that the Clinical Commissioning Group and other organisations respond to the growing mental health crisis in Britain.hastings-youth-council

They presented the petition with over 280 signatures to Amber Rudd MP on Friday 09 December at her local constituency office in St Leonards.

“Mental health is very important to the young people in Hastings and this is why it’s been a campaign of ours” said Huda Caglayan chair Hastings Youth Council.

“We need more investment and commitment to tackling mental health issues and it’s hoped our petition may lead to this” she added.

“The Youth Council is committed to highlighting mental health issues in young people locally and we fully support them in their endeavours” said Cllr Kim Forward, the council’s lead member for communities.

Around 250 people turned out on Friday 2nd December to support the Hastings Sierra Leone Friendship Link’s Christmas Concert at St Clements Church in Hastings Old Town. This year’s event was a mixture of music song and monologues and provided a varied and entertaining evening for everyone who attended. It proved a huge success with the audience and the Church was filled with joy and laughter and the Christmas spirit.

Richard Homewood, Chair of the Friendship Link said :- “Our thanks go to all of those who helped put together this extremely ambitious programme of Christmas themed entertainment, especially St Mary Star of the Sea Year 6 Choir, Cantabile and individual performances from Steve Corke,  Claire Adams, Mike Evans, Jacqueline Lawrence, Jenny Hanley, and Julian Anderson with accompaniment on the piano and organ from Stephen Page. Our thanks also go to the Church Wardens at St Clements for allowing us to use St Clement’s Church which was a wonderful backdrop and venue for the event.christmas-concert

“The event raised over £1500 for the charity which was almost doubled by a hugely generous donation from Hastings Rotary Club.

“Every penny of the money raised will go towards the Link’s work in the Hastings area in Sierra Leone as we continue to help them rebuild their lives after the Ebola outbreak and the serious flooding in the area which followed. Work is continuing to improve health care facilities in the village to tackle some of the highest rates of infant mortality in the world and the ravages of disease such as malaria and HIV as well as improve general health care to the community. Work is also underway to re-establish the teacher exchange programme to help raise education standards. The Link is determined to increase its efforts to raise funds to help the community improve their livelihoods and build a sustainable future. We are working on a new strategy for our work over the next five years and are developing action plans focused on its key themes of Health, Education and creating employment which we hope will help the community build a sustainable future for themselves.”

Next February sees the tenth anniversary of the twinning of Hastings, UK with Hastings, Sierra Leone which formally recognised several years of hard work by the Friendship Link helping the community recover from the ravages of the rebel war which decimated the village. The Friendship Link is working with Hastings Borough Council here in the UK, Western Area Rural District Council

and the Hastings Sierra Leone Association in Sierra Leone on plans to recognise the momentous anniversary both here and in Sierra Leone.

Richard went on to say :- “We will be increasing our fundraising efforts as the tenth anniversary approaches. We need to try attract sponsorship from local businesses and individuals if we are to achieve the ambitious plans to secure a sustainable future for the village that are in the strategy we are developing in partnership with them.

“We are continuing to improve health care facilities in the village to tackle some of the highest rates of infant mortality in the world and the ravages of disease such as malaria and HIV as well as improve general health care to the community. The Link is determined to increase its efforts to raise funds to help the community improve their livelihoods and build a sustainable future.

‘We are also working to re-establish the teacher exchange programme for 14 schools in the UK twinned with schools in Sierra Leone to help raise education standards. It is hoped that with the help of the British Council it will be possible to resume the exchange programme in February to coincide with the tenth anniversary commemoration with a group of UK teachers visiting their twinned schools in Sierra Leone and for other Link Members to visit to continue with their work on health care and environmental issues.’

Further details of plans for the commemoration of the tenth anniversary of the Town Twinning will be released in the coming weeks.

Hastings Information Centre has now expanded its stock to include a wider variety of gifts for all tastes and budgets, perfect in the run up to Christmas.

“We are really excited to offer some lovely gift ideas for Christmas all produced by local artists and craftsmen and women” said Cllr Kim Forward Hastings Borough Council’s lead member for tourism.tourist-information-centre

She added: “We have framed photos and prints by Claire Land and John Wilhelm, jewellery by Clare Van Moppes, fine bone china featuring local scenes by James Dean Pottery which is exclusive to us, glass ornaments from the Glass Sculptress and mirrors by Alison Purdy and Hastings Furniture Services. This all sits alongside our usual range of calendars and Christmas cards too. Come and have a browse, you’re bound to find something special.”

The Tourist Information Centre at Breeds Place is open daily to provide a wide range of information and advice on attractions, coach tours and bus tickets, Southern Day Save train tickets, theatre and event tickets, National Express Coach bookings, souvenirs and gifts. They can also assist with parking permits and pink recycling sacks.

The Mayor of Hastings Cllr Judy Rogers together with the Deputy Mayor Cllr Nigel Sinden and Hastings Borough Council leader, Cllr Peter Chowney visited Royal Mail’s Hastings delivery office to pass on Christmas wishes, thanks and encouragement to postmen and women at their busiest time of year.

They were shown around the sorting office in Hastings and were introduced to the postmen and women who are working hard to sort and deliver mail in the run-up to Christmas.

The Mayor, Cllr Judy Rogers said:

“It was great to meet the postmen and women at Royal Mail’s Hastings delivery office and see first-hand just how much effort they put into delivering our mail.

“Our postal workers do such an important job, especially at this time of year helping to deliver Christmas to many people and families in our area. I would like to thank them for their efforts and wish them all the best over the busy festive period.”

Residents in Hastings will receive a sticker to remind them of the main items they can recycle at home.

A sticker is being sent out to residents across the borough along with their annual calendar which includes a comprehensive list of items that can be recycled as well as showing waste and recycling collection dates for the Christmas period and the year ahead.recycliing-sticker

Residents are asked to attach the sticker to their main recycling container as a handy reminder of what can be recycled.

Across East Sussex, 42 per cent of waste is recycled, but around a quarter of what’s thrown in people’s rubbish bins could still be recycled.

People can help by remembering to recycle all their plastic bottles; plastic pots, tubs and trays; paper and card; foil and cans and food and drink cartons – and by keeping recycling clean, empty, squashed and unbagged.

Cllr Warren Davies Hastings Borough Council’s lead member for environment said: “People in Hastings do a fantastic job of recycling their waste but we can always do more.

“By recycling more rubbish, residents can help us to reduce the amount of waste that is burnt to create energy or goes to landfill, further reducing our carbon footprint. Recycling also saves money for essential community services.

“By attaching the sticker to recycling containers, hopefully it will act as a reminder as to what can be put in them and will encourage people to recycle even more. Deliveries of the sticker and calendar start next week (W/C December 5th), look out for yours!”

More information about what can be recycled in your area can be found at http://www.liveloverecycling.co.uk/

Hailfax, the UK’s biggest mortgage lender,just released its 2016 outlook for the UK housing market,  and although the report shows that house prices are going to keep rising over the next year, the rate at which they’re going to grow is set to slow down.

House prices are set to increase by between 4% and 6% in 2016, as increasing affordability problems and the prospects of an interest rate rise put the brakes on the property market

Although all regions are expected to experience price increases in 2016 the lender reported, price growth is expected to slow more sharply in London than elsewhere in the UK.

Despite low levels of house building, Halifax predicted improvements will be made over the medium-term beyond 2016 to help bring demand and supply into better balance.

Halifax’s report, led by housing economist Martin Ellis, said: “There is little reason to expect any fundamental shift in the key market drivers in the immediate future. As a result, the substantial imbalance between supply and demand is likely to persist, maintaining upward pressure on house prices in 2016.”

“Nonetheless, with house prices continuing to increase more quickly than average earnings, it is increasingly difficult to get on the housing ladder,” Mr Ellis stated.

“This ongoing development, combined with the growing prospect of an interest rate rise, should start to put the brakes on house price growth during the course of 2016.”

Ellis said he expects interest rates to rise at a gradual pace and to have a “significant” bearing on house price developments in 2016 and beyond.

“When the time finally comes for the first rise in official interest rates, the Bank of England is likely to adopt a cautious approach to raising rates due to concerns about households’ ability to make higher repayments on their debts. Interest rates are, therefore, likely to rise at a gradual pace.”