Driving Hastings forward 01424 205481

Following the success of their Bexhill lunch club, McPhersons Chartered Accountants have launched a brand new business lunch club for businesses in Hastings. This will be an informal event, held at the White Rock Hotel, where local businesses can enjoy some excellent food whilst networking.

McPhersons have been administering the Bexhill Lunch Club for over two years and from this, the results have been that it regularly attracts between 30 and 40 business people. It is held at the Trattoria Italiana and the De La Warr Pavilion.

The White Rock Hotel is a McPhersons client and was chosen for the first lunch club. It enjoys some of the best views in Hastings and has a reputation for great value food.

All business people are welcome to attend. Booking, payment and menu choices are in advance and more information can be found at here.

The largest business to business exhibition and networking event returns to Hastings on Thursday 29th October with Lets do Business Hastings.

Returning to Sussex Coast College again this year, the show will welcome hundreds of business owners, directors and key-decision makers under one roof.

Let’s Do Business Hastings offers companies the perfect opportunity to promote their business, make new connections and generate new leads. All through good old-fashioned networking!

Exhibition stands are selling fast, with more than 50% booked up within just one week.

Wes Game, exhibition organiser said:

“We’ve had a great response to the Hastings exhibition again this year, which I think is testament to the thriving business community in the area.

“There is no substitute for face-to-face networking and the Let’s Do Business exhibitions give companies a great platform for this.”

The show will also feature speed networking in the morning and four free interesting and thought-provoking seminars throughout the day.

Stands start from just £215 (plus VAT) – book your space today online.

The Let’s Do Business Group is the leading social enterprise in the country for finance according to the NatWest Social Enterprise 100 Index.

In addition to topping the Index within the finance sector, the Let’s Do Business Group (LDBG) feature third across the South East region and fourth overall out of more than 800 social enterprises.

Let’s do Business have helped start-ups and established businesses to grow and prosper throughout the South East of England for more than 20 years.natwest se100

Its finance arm, Let’s Do Business Finance (LDBF) offers an alternative source of commercial funding to companies that are unable to source the capital they need from high street lenders.

In the last financial year, LDBF lent more than £700,000 to SMEs in the South East, a marked increase compared to the £238,000 lent the previous year, representing almost an increase in growth of almost 70%.

This is in addition to the £1 million the Group has lent to start-up ventures in the past four months throughout the South of England.

Ian Smallwood Head of Services at LDBF said, “We are delighted to be number one within the finance sector in the NatWest SE Index. Not only have we grown considerably in the past couple of years, but we have been able to almost triple the number of businesses we can help.

“This is a great achievement for our team, but importantly these businesses are now able to grow and thrive, creating more jobs and further strengthen the economy in the South East.”

The team at LDBF offers loans of between £3,000 and £50,000 to companies looking to scale-up their operations, with start-up finance available up to £25,000.

The SE 100 Index tracks data from social enterprises across the UK, offering an insight into their performance.


Local business mentor and business author Richard Eaton has released a revised edition to his previous book titled, Getting Ready To Start A Business.

The revised and updated edition also has a new title: Owning a Business: Things you need to Know and covers all the things that budding entrepreneurs need to know when considering or setting up a business.

So if you are in this position and want to learn more and get insight before you go ahead (or even brush up on a few things if you’re already in business) then it should be worth a read.

The book is available for digital download on Amazon right now and here’s the link to the books listing.


Nissan are currently running a Workplace Presentation Programme for the 100% electric Nissan LEAF.

Last week they visited the Innovation Centre to give staff the opportunity to learn about and experience electric driving.nissan 1

The Market for plug in vehicles has quadrupled in 12 months but many people have lots of questions about electric driving.

The Workplace Presentation Programme has proved successful as it allows staff to learn about the vehicle in a convenient, familiar and no pressure environment.

Any member of staff that wishes to look at the LEAF further would also qualify for preferential purchase terms from St Leonards Motors Nissan.

St Leonards Motors Nissan gave a short presentation and Q & A at the Innovation Centre in Hastings and received great feedback.

It gave staff the opportunity to understand how you can charge at home with a Government subsidised wall box charger.

They looked at whether the real world 100 mile range exceeded their daily usage requirements.  Explored the money saved by giving up petrol or diesel, the national public rapid charge network which charges LEAF in 30 minutes and the 5 year warranty on the battery, and they also heard feedback from existing drivers.

Employees also enjoyed test drives to experience how quiet, smooth, and responsive driving electric can be from the Innovation Centre car park.


Pacific House – the first office centre on Eastbourne’s emerging Sovereign Harbour Innovation Park – has now been completed.

To coincide with this, a web site for the Innovation Park has been launched at www.sovereigninnovationpark.co.uk.

Twenty two prospective tenants viewed the offices on the first open afternoon last Thursday, 16 July, with a number reserving offices and further viewings booked.

Pacific House

Pacific House is a three-floor business centre of striking contemporary architectural design. With offices available within it ranging from 627 sq ft up to the whole 25,235 sq ft building, it is suitable for small, medium and large companies.

There are 11 small suites on the ground floor (from 627 to 952 sq ft), six medium-sized offices on the first floor (1,258 – 1,897 sq ft) and two large offices on the second floor (4,402 & 4,412 sq ft). If appropriate, these could be combined or sub-divided to suit occupiers’ needs.

In addition to the office suites, Pacific House incorporates a light-filled atrium, break-out areas for informal meetings and a conference room. It is designed to be a low-energy building with parking spaces for 130 cars.

Developer Sea Change Sussex – the not-for-profit regeneration company for East Sussex – has already received a significant number of letting enquiries from companies in Eastbourne and further afield.

In addition to the 22 prospective occupiers who viewed the property last week, further viewings are being arranged over the coming days. Sovereign Harbour Residents Association members and Eastbourne Borough councillors are also being shown the building in late July.

Buckingham Group Contracting began construction work for Pacific House in September 2014 and completed the project on schedule.

In addition to Pacific House, Sovereign Harbour Innovation Park has sites suitable for further business premises up to 80,000 sq ft. Companies can commission Sea Change to develop bespoke freehold or leasehold properties for them, or buy serviced sites to develop their own.

The Innovation Park project is designed to provide an economic boost to the area by providing high-quality premises and sites on previously disused land. It aims to help local firms expand and to attract companies to the area, creating jobs.

The Park is three miles from Eastbourne town centre and accessed from Pacific Drive, off Pevensey Bay Road. It is five minutes’ walk to the cafes, restaurants and boutiques of Sovereign Harbour’s prestigious marina, as well as a retail park including a large supermarket, cinema and gym.

Anyone interested in offices in Pacific House or sites on the Sovereign Harbour Innovation Park should contact one of Sea Change’s agents:

They can also visit the new web site at www.sovereigninnovationpark.co.uk to see more information and images of the scheme and download a brochure for Pacific House.



On Wednesday 5th August the Chairman’s Business & Community Breakfast Club will take place. The event, starts at 7:15am and is located at the multi award winning Azur at The Marina Pavilion in St Leonards-on-Sea.

The event will have joint guest speakers Renato Pirez who is the owner of an award winning business called Acting Moon Events and Sophie Hawkins an employment advisor for The Shaw Trust.

Over breakfast, the event aims to connect businesses and community groups. The price per person is £8.  Please bring with you a selection of business cards, roller banner and any literature promoting an event that you wish to promote to other attendees.

To book your place contact Lord Brett McLean on 07838 241222. Alternatively, contact Azur at The Marina Pavilion on 01424 447461.




Heathrow is the UK’s busiest airport and has said that its main focus now is on the campaign for building a new runway. The airport was chosen as the preferred site for expansion over Gatwick Airport, which is another popular London-based airport.

On Friday, Heathrow published its first-half results, which stated that passenger numbers rose 1.3%, enhancing its adjusted core earnings to 748 million pounds ($1.2 billion). This is a rise of 6.3% compared with the previous year.

With the airport already operating at full capacity, it makes sense for Heathrow to be allowed to have another runway. Not only that, but the airport has continued to campaign to be given permission to expand as this will not only create more flights for consumers, but also bring in more money.

The main reason for opposition towards building a runway at Heathrow is because some prominent politicians, local residents and environmental groups disagree with what would change as a result of the new build. There would be more air and noise pollution, which is bound to be a major factor for the locals.

However, despite Heathrow’s efforts at convincing everyone in general that the new runway will have more benefits than cons, the Prime Minister David Cameron is still yet to make a decision. Cameron stated that he would make a decision by the end of the year.

David Cameron overlooked the most vocal opponents of the airport’s expansion when he set up a new aviation committee. This was set up earlier this week and revealed that the committee also considered that building the runway at Gatwick, who is Britain’s second busiest airport, is a viable option.

Income and corporation tax receipts rose to record levels and as a result the UK government borrowing fell to £9.4 billion in June. This is down £0.8 billion from the year before. Income tax receipts rose to £11.5 billion and corporation tax brought in £1.7 billion, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS). These figures are both record monthly highs.

For the month of June, the result was the lowest borrowing figure since 2008. Despite this, many expected this to drop further to £8.5 billion. However, across the financial year so far, borrowing has fallen by £6.1 billion to £25.1 billion.

Government finances also received a boost of £117 billion last month because of a fine that Lloyds Banking Group paid over its handling of payment protection insurance (PPI) complaints. Not only that, but the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) forecast that public borrowing would be £69.5 billion this year. This was revealed in the summer Budget earlier this month.

At the end of June this year, public sector net debt was £1.513 trillion, or 81.5% of annual UK economic output. This is up from 80.8% in May.

By 2019, the government is aiming to eliminate the budget deficit and run a £10 billion surplus in 2020 as well as in future years. In the summer Budget, the chancellor George Osborne stated that there would be £37 billion of spending cuts during this parliament.

The government’s spending review in November will set out £20 billion worth of departmental budget cuts over the next five years.

East Sussex County Council are helping companies in East Sussex with grants and loans through a new funding scheme delivered by Locate East Sussex.

The grants/loans are being offered to companies to help them grow and create new jobs.

The grants and loans for businesses are as follows:

  • Business Growth Fund provides grant and loan funding for capital investment to support job creation.  The Business Growth Fund is only available to micro, small and medium (SME) businesses (under 250 employees) and start ups.
  • Upgrading Empty Commercial Property Fund is aimed at companies that are planning to refurbish, upgrade or convert empty or underused commercial premises.
  • The Business incubator fund supports the creation (new build or conversion) of a minimum of three Incubation Centres.

Information on the Business Growth fund  is available at www.locateeastsussex.org.uk and application forms for grants and loans are available from Locate East Sussex on request by email or phone 01424 205085.