Calling all engineering and manufacturing employers in East Sussex

Local education providers, Sussex Coast College are looking to work with engineering and manufacturing businesses operating within East Sussex, to work with them to better improve education and learning in this field.

They are holding a curriculum planning workshop on Tuesday 26th January 2016 at their Ore Valley Campus on Parker Road in Hastings between 2 and 6pm.

This event offers employers a great opportunity to not only challenge education providers, but to work with them to better meet their needs and address skills and recruitment challenges.

The workshop will be split into two areas:

1. Study Programmes: engineering and manufacturing training for 16-18 year olds

  • An overview of the current sector offer for 16-18s and government rules that training providers must adhere to
  • An open discussion about how SCCH can adapt 16-18 programmes to better meet local need and what employers can do to support young people.

2. Engineering and manufacturing training for apprentices and adults

  • An overview of the current adult and apprenticeship offer in engineering and manufacturing within East Sussex
  • An outline of the changes in apprenticeships from 2017/18
  • An open discussion about better meeting the needs of employers in East Sussex
  • Develop an action plan from the ideas to implement changes and hold providers and employers to account.

For more information, download the flyer here, book your place via Lindsay Marriott on (01424) 458434 or via

Two fifths of UK businesses survive for five years

Two fifths of UK businesses survive for five years

Official figures out today show that 41% of the businesses set up in 2009 were still trading in 2014.

The statistic was included in new business demographic data released by the Office of National Statistics (ONS).

By region, the highest five-year survival rate was in the South West, at 45.0%, while the lowest was in London, at 38.6%.

Particularly high five-year survival rates include health companies at 51.8% and education firms with 50.9% still trading after five years.

Accommodation and food service businesses experienced the lowest rate, with only 33.4% of businesses surviving for five years.

Uk Business Survival Rates

The number of new companies, described as ‘business births’, increased from 346,000 to 351,000 between 2013 and 2014, the highest recorded since comparable records began in 2000, ONS said.

But the total companies shutting down, or ‘business deaths’, also increased from 238,000 to 246,000. This compares with a decline in failed firms from 252,000 to 238,000 during the previous year. The rate of deaths however saw an overall 0.1% fall.

Emma Jones, founder of Enterprise Nation, said: “Britain’s appetite for starting and running a business has been growing exponentially for many years. It’s not a flash in the pan, it’s not a result of the recession, it’s simply the new normal.

“Technology means people can grow a business from their kitchen table in and sell their products globally, it also opens up entrepreneurship because people can more easily spot a gap in the market and build organically.

“Tailoring and targeting the right advice to the right business must be a high priority in order to help take these businesses to the next level and avoid the mistakes that can cause fledgling firms to fold prematurely.”

In 2014, the highest rate of business births was in the business administration and support sector. It was driven by an increase of 5,000 new companies delivering business support services.

The second highest rate occurred in finance and insurance at 17.6%, compared with 16.9% in 2013.

The highest business death rate, at 13.1%, was among accommodation and food service companies. This was followed by business administration and support firms.

Within the regions, London had the highest business birth rate at 17.7% last year, followed by the North East (14.0%) and North West (13.7%). Northern Ireland had the lowest birth rate at 8.7%.

London also had the highest business closure rate at 10.6%, followed by the North East with 10.2%. The highest number of births and deaths were in London at 89,000 and 53,000 respectively.

Check out Enterprise Nation’s advice on starting and growing a business.

Wealden and Rother Rural Partnership open for funding

EU grants totalling £1.472 million are now available to businesses in the rural areas of Wealden and Rother through the WARR partnership.

This latest LEADER support programme, announced by the Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs, will provide grants to small businesses, farmers, foresters and communities for projects that create jobs and grow the rural economy.

It reactivates the Wealden and Rother Rural Partnership, which through the previous four year LEADER Programme, supported 80 rural projects, created or protected over 90 full-time equivalent jobs, and led to just over £4 million being invested in small businesses and communities (including matched private sector funding).

Hamish Monro, Chairman of the WARR Partnership said, “Our Local Development Strategy recognises the diversity and potential of the rural businesses in Rother and Wealden. The latest LEADER programme builds on our previous success and adds value to our growth-orientated enterprises, while at the same time promoting the positive management of rural landscapes in this part of Sussex. LEADER is a proven example of how an area can help itself with sustainable business growth and we welcome the new Programme.”

Among the rural projects WARR supported through the previous LEADER programme were a mastectomy lingerie company, a microbrewery, a community radio station, a film company and a bed and breakfast  business offering holiday accommodation for horses and their riders.

Many involved  farm shops, holiday accommodation, forestry management and the  economic re-use of rural buildings.

“WARR has helped redirect money from the EU Common Agricultural Policy into countryside enterprises,  working with innovative businesses to counter the difficulties posed by a rural location,” said Councillor Roy Galley, Wealden District Council’s representative on the WARR Partnership. “Its funds have also supported village life through helping to pay for improvements to local facilities.”

The Wealden and Rother Rural Partnership is made up of local people and organisations with a knowledge of rural issues and their communities. It acts as the Local Action Group for the programme. Through a competitive process, the Partnership determines which projects will be funded.

Plumpton College is managing the delivery of the WARR Partnership LEADER programme, supported by Rother and Wealden District Councils, and East Sussex County Council.

Funding under LEADER is available to rural businesses, farmers, foresters, growers, landowners, environmental organisations, cultural, heritage and community providers, as well as voluntary and charitable organisations. The Partnership will be encouraging projects that will assist, strengthen and develop the local economy and deliver jobs, growth and community benefits in rural East Sussex.

The LEADER Handbook which gives guidance on project eligibility will shortly be available on the WARR Partnership website:

Applicants will then complete and submit an Outline Application electronically (no paper-based applications) and then from the information on the Outline Application, the project will be assessed for eligibility and a decision made as to whether or not to invite a Full Application.

warr_logoFor more information;

  • Don Cranfield,
  • Programme Manager,
  • Plumpton College
  • Tel: 01273 892031
  • Email:


Connecting businesses to a brighter future in East Sussex

With innovation and business growth at the top of the agenda at the upcoming Best4Biz Conference in Uckfield, Business East Sussex will talk you through the Internet of Things and how it can benefit your business as part of one of the many exciting seminars running throughout the day.

Best4Biz will welcome entrepreneurs and business professionals from across East Sussex for a day of networking, top keynote speakers and thought-provoking breakout sessions.

Held at The East Sussex National Hotel in Uckfield on Friday 16th October, Best4Biz is run in association with East Sussex County Council and the Alliance of Chambers in East Sussex.

‘Only connect’

Business East Sussex (BES) Manager, Ian Smallwood and Navigator Fred Thomas will be presenting a seminar at Best4Biz at 4pm.

The free session, ‘Only connect’ will explain how BES can help your business reach the next stage in its development, whilst Strategy Developer Nick Price will give a talk about the future of innovation and collaboration in business.

If you want to find out about how you can better understand your customers, other businesses and support, book your seminar place here and connect with them.

Linking businesses to growth in East Sussex

BES is a navigation service, connecting start-ups and established companies in East Sussex to right support organisations to enable them to thrive and grow.

Get involved

The conference and seminars are entirely free, book your place here.

For more information about the event, visit the Alliance of Chambers in East Sussex website.

£1,000 Energy Efficiency Grants

There is currently funding available from East Sussex County Council and the EU to help small and medium sized businesses in East Sussex (excluding Brighton & Hove) improve energy efficiency at their premises and reduce costs through:

·         Free Site Energy Audits

·         £1,000 Energy Efficiency Grants

The Energy Audits are carried out by a qualified commercial Energy Assessor and provide recommendations for both quick-win and longer term energy and cost saving measure. Typically, initiatives that will result in cost savings of over £1,000 per year are identified.

Grants of up to £1,000 are available on a first-come-first-served basis, to both businesses that receive an audit, to implement the recommendations suggested, as well as other businesses that already have an energy saving project in mind. Amongst other measures, grants have been awarded to date for LED lighting, a new boiler and cavity and loft insulation.

Further details and grant application forms can be found at:

Let’s Do Business 2015 Hastings Exhibition

2015 Hastings show – Bookings now open.

10am – 4pm
Thursday 29 October
at Sussex Coast College

With two floors of exhibition stands and free seminars on offer throughout the day, Let’s Do Business Hastings is the place network and drive your business forward.
Stands on sale soon!

“It was a great event and we had fun! It wasn’t at all stuffy” 

“We enjoyed every second of it. Well done for putting on another great exhibition over in Hastings. We’ll be back again!” 

“Great to catch up with old friends and make new ones today at Lets Do Business. Exciting SMEs & top community spirit

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