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Chamber News & Blog

Important announcements from the Chamber, our members, local Councils and other relevant business news will be posted regularly here.

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  • 06 May 2021 11:58 AM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    GB MET and Sussex Partnership launch a Health and Care Academy.

    Greater Brighton Metropolitan College (GB MET) is proud to be working in partnership with Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust to educate and support the next generation of healthcare workers through a new Health and Care Academy.

    The launch of the Health and Care Academy is the first of its kind in the South East region and enables students to work with Sussex Partnership, who provide specialist mental health and learning disability services across south east England, to gain valuable work placements and support from their dedicated healthcare mentors. This insight placement experience includes working with healthcare professionals and providing one-to-one guidance, which will benefit students’ career development and help with the transition into a healthcare programme at university.

    Funding for the partnership has been secured from Health Education England, to help extend the number of routes into working for the NHS through courses and work placements, which will complement what is already on offer through other traditional routes. This will include apprenticeship opportunities.

    Dr Anita Green, Associate Director of Nurse Education at Sussex Partnership, said “We want to offer this experience to college students so they can find out what it is like to work in a mental health trust at this early stage of their careers and view working in mental health as a rewarding career decision.” 

    With healthcare being at the forefront of the response to the COVID-19 pandemic and training being a priority in the Government’s skills agenda, a partnership between GB MET and Sussex Partnership is apt and timely.

    Matt Phillips, Senior Development Nurse at Sussex Partnership, said “This is a fantastic opportunity for aspiring healthcare workers to gain real hands-on experience within a multidisciplinary healthcare setting. We are excited to be working in partnership with GB MET, helping their students to gain exposure to the wide range of careers within the NHS workforce”.

    The scheme is currently being successfully piloted by students on the Access to Higher Education nursing programme who have been able to experience working in a mental health setting through a series of placements at Mill View Hospital in Hove and Meadowfield Hospital in Worthing.

    Helena Thomas, Principal at GB MET, said, “We are extremely excited to be working with the Trust and are proud to be supporting the NHS to recruit much needed healthcare staff. Our new Academy will provide invaluable opportunities for our students and provide them with the foundation they need for successful healthcare careers.”

    The Health and Care Academy will grow over the next few years, increasing the number of opportunities within the NHS for GB MET students across the wider health and social care programmes offered by the College, including Level 3 qualifications for school leavers.

  • 06 May 2021 10:58 AM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Accountancy firm adopts new brand to support ‘Building a Brighter Future’

    Sussex accountancy firm Carpenter Box has today unveiled a new, fresh visual identity to support its continued growth and to help its clients ‘Build a Brighter Future’.

    Over recent years, the firm has enjoyed strong growth, opening new offices in Gatwick, Brighton and Chichester in addition to its long-established base in Worthing. It now employs nearly 200 people, and the practice is proud to have remained independent for almost 100 years.

    The firm’s modern new look has also been adopted by Carpenter Box Financial Advisers. The identity encapsulates its commitment to its clients, employees, communities and the accountancy profession.

    In another key development, Carpenter Box is joining PrimeGlobal, one of the five largest associations of independent accounting firms in the world.

    Carpenter Box Managing Partner, Alan Edwards, is excited about the current changes to the business commenting: “We believe our new look together with our new tag line ‘Building a Brighter Future’ matches our commitment to making a difference to our clients. Our ethos centres on their success, and our team are dedicated to delivering a first-class service to help our clients and their businesses achieve their goals.

    “Whether a business trades locally, nationally or globally, we have the skills and resources to provide our clients with the service, expertise and value they need to build a brighter future.”

  • 05 May 2021 12:52 PM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    West Sussex Golf Day Raises £5,725 For Worthing Veterans’ Charity

    Last Thursday (29 April), a golf day in West Sussex which raised £5,725 for disabled veterans was a great success.

    Fifteen teams of four took part in the fundraising event at Ham Manor Golf Club, Angmering, Littlehampton, to help raise vital funds for Worthing-based charity, Care for Veterans
    The funds will help to provide specialist care and rehabilitation to physically disabled veterans at the charity’s 60-bed facility. Many of the current residents have an Acquired Brain Injury (ABI) or a degenerative neurological condition, such as multiple sclerosis, motor neurone disease and Parkinson’s.

    The winning team with 91 points was from Brighton-based, Linc Property, they won a fine malt whisky and an engraved glass. Coming in second with 90 points was a team from Hove-based estate agent, Cox & Co.

    To ensure compliance with Covid regulations, there was staggered start and alfresco dining. The weather stayed dry, and golfers enjoyed a hog roast after the competition, as well as taking part in a putting competition, raffle, and auction. 

    Golfers included: Andy Gilford, a visually impaired golfer from Worthing, West Sussex, who has been captain of the England and Wales Blind Golf Association and is ranked #4 in the B2 category; Toby Pawson, a Team GB Paralympian from Leatherhead, Surrey; Kerry Mayo, Ex-Brighton and Hove footballer; and Andy Jones from Fareham, Hampshire, an amputee, Royal Navy veteran and Disabled Golf Association golfer who has represented Wales.

    Local businesses that supported the event, included, County Business Club, Fizz Creations, Gemini Print, CWJ Landscapes, 5 Rings Group, Start Communications, Proteus Waterproofing, MHA Carpenter Box and Ian Hart Funeral Services.

    Christine Gillott, Senior Fundraiser at Care for Veterans, said: “Due to restrictions, we have been meeting with local businesses online, so it was fantastic to finally meet them in person. We are so grateful to Wendy and the team at Ham Manor Golf Club for helping us to put on a successful Covid-compliant golfing event, which everyone thoroughly enjoyed. Thank you so much to everyone who supported.”

    Since 1919, Care for Veterans has provided the highest possible standard of care and rehabilitation to disabled ex-Service personnel and their families. It provides services such as nursing, physiotherapy, occupational therapy, and speech and language therapy to help rehabilitate those who live there to live more independent lives. As an independent provider, the charity can fill the gaps often found between healthcare and social services.
    The charity receives no regular Government funding and must raise £1.9 million each year to maintain its nursing and rehabilitation services for ex-Service personnel.
    For more information about Care for Veterans, visit, call 01903 213458 or email

  • 23 April 2021 3:49 PM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Charities need to prepare for the Post-COVID world

    As lockdown starts to ease, specialists at Sussex-based chartered accountants MHA Carpenter Box are recommending actions to help local charities prepare for a post-COVID world.

    Charities have been hit financially and operationally over the last 12 months and many have had to adapt to reduced income and organisational change.

    Robin Evans, Partner and Head of Charities & Not for Profit at MHA Carpenter Box, commented: “As we move out of lockdown, charities will need to be ready for a potentially overwhelming level of activity – for example dealing with a deluge of donations to their high street retail outlets. Having systems in place to manage this pent-up demand will be essential in ensuring that charities optimise this important revenue stream.”

    He says that while the recent Budget did little to support the charities sector, there are actions that charities can take now in preparation for the end of lockdown. This includes assessing whether new ways of working should be continued and reviewing areas that have caused issues. For example, remote working has exposed some organisations to greater risk of IT based fraud.

    Charities should also be considering whether any additional services they introduced during the pandemic should continue or whether they return to their core activities.

    For example, charities offering face-to-face support have been able to reach more people online, so they need to consider whether this delivers a greater impact overall, or whether their effectiveness has been diluted. In another case, a charity supporting low income families with housing challenges provided both housing and food services during lockdown - should they continue or revert to pre-COVID practice?

    Also high on the action list should be a review of staff and trustee expertise to ensure they are properly equipped for the post-COVD world.

    Robin added: “Many charities have said that the pandemic has meant a greater awareness and appreciation of their work – and they have discovered more innovative and efficient ways of reaching the people they seek to help. Hopefully, we will soon see our local charities benefiting from a better fund-raising climate so that they are able to do even more great work.”

    MHA Carpenter Box runs its own charitable foundation and recently donated £10,000 to help local charities deliver their services.  Among the charities to benefit were the West Sussex Mediation Services, Sussex Community Foundation Crisis Fund, Turning Tides, Crawley Open House, Circus Starr’s Winter Tour, Care for Veterans and the Down Syndrome Development Trust.

    In total, the foundation has now raised £230,000 for local good causes since it was formed.

  • 09 April 2021 2:49 PM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Free Investment & Tax webinar: Time for a Financial Spring Clean?

    With the new tax year upon us, now is the ideal time for a Spring clean of business and personal finances, according to Sussex-based accountants MHA Carpenter Box.

    The firm, which has offices in Worthing, Gatwick, Brighton and Chichester, is running a free webinar on 20 April to guide companies and individuals through the measures announced in the recent Budget, and how they might impact financial decisions.

    The webinar speakers include David Crowter, Tax Partner at MHA Carpenter Box and Roy Thompson, Head of MHA Carpenter Box Financial Advisers. As well as reviewing the current financial landscape, they will offer insights into how best to plan for the current tax year and beyond.

    Roy commented: “The volatility of the financial markets as a consequence of coronavirus and Brexit has made forward planning and managing financial affairs challenging in what is a complex and evolving tax system.

    “This webinar will help to set the scene for future decision-making. It will explain what some of the Budget measures actually mean, why it’s important to continuously monitor financial plans and highlight the implications of changes to pension allowance and the private pension age.”

    To register, go to

  • 06 April 2021 11:02 AM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Business Start Up and Growth Course, from 5th April - please join us! Free business start up course on line for Shoreham by Sea and area unemployed residents.

    Smart Dog Education CIC based in Steyning, is a social enterprise whose aim is to secure grant and government funding to help community projects.

    We have 20 places available on an entirely free business start up course. The course has 5 modules and you will have a fully formed business plan and cashflow forecaster by the end of it. Starts 5th April and runs for 3 months, 3 hours every second Monday. Access to expert business advisers, free resources and grant applications for start up funding. Anyone welcome, 18-100!

    £500 prize to the best business idea voted by our Dragons Den at the end of the course in June!!

    At the very least you'll make new friends and make the best use of this special time to explore your wildest business dream!

    Doesn't matter how big or how small, how fantastic or practical your idea is, we have heard them all and helped set up some AMAZING businesses like Bikeworks and Happy Computers.

    Email for info and to reserve your place. 100% free, funded by the European Social Fund.

  • 17 March 2021 9:24 AM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Fit Feb success for care home residents as they raise over £1,000 for charity

    Residents and staff at Valerie Manor Care Home in Upper Beeding have kickstarted 2021 in a positive way by taking part in St Barnabas House’s Fit Feb virtual challenge, completing an hour of physical or mental fitness every day in February. With the help of local health and fitness company, Head Active, Valerie Manor raised over £1,000 for St Barnabas by taking part in Fit Feb, bringing the care home’s fundraising total to more than £10,000 since they started supporting the hospice in May 2012.

    Lockdown has been an isolating time for the 23 care home residents at Valerie Manor, but Fit Feb saw everyone, aged 86 to 100, come together to take part in activities ranging from puzzles and group quizzes to seated exercises and target throwing. All whilst fundraising to support the hospice team who regularly visit residents to provide free expert care and support towards the end of life.

    Zoe Fry, Director at Valerie Manor, says, “Everyone has loved taking part in Fit Feb and raising money for St Barnabas House. Our residents have given so much to society during their lives, so having something to focus on and a chance to help their local hospice has been a huge boost to their mental wellbeing during this difficult time.

    Tony, 94, enjoyed taking part describing it as “a lot of fun” and thanking his carer, Joyce, for coordinating the Fit Feb activities: “I really enjoyed joining in and wearing the t-shirt. It was very nice and a jolly good idea for fundraising.” (photo of Tony included in WeTransfer link).

    To support Valerie Manor with their Fit Feb virtual challenge, local fitness company, Head Active, joined forces with the care home, generously providing free online fitness classes to staff and family members as well as encouraging its own members to take part and fundraise.

    “Together, we’ve raised over £1,000 for St Barnabas House by taking part in Fit Feb,” says Jordan Head, Director at Head Active.

    Many of our staff and Head Active members have friends and relatives who have been cared for by the hospice, so it’s been great to team up with Valerie Manor and help raise awareness and money for a cause close to all of our hearts. Like everyone at the care home, Head Active members also really benefitted from focusing on their mental and physical health during lockdown.”

    Jo Bacon, Corporate Fundraiser at St Barnabas House, says, “We are so grateful to Valerie Manor and Head Active who have worked together to take part in Fit Feb, raising over £1,000. This generous donation means that many more local people with incurable conditions will receive the care they need, whether this is at the hospice, in their own homes, or at care homes like Valerie Manor.”

    To support Valerie Manor’s fundraising, visit

  • 17 March 2021 9:19 AM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Hundreds back Hydrogen Sussex launch

    The quest to place Greater Brighton at the heart of the UK hydrogen revolution has begun with innovators, researchers, businesses and politicians of all parties uniting to back the bid.

    More than 200 people attended the virtual launch of Hydrogen Sussex last week as the drive for the UK to reach net zero carbon status by 2030 steps up a gear.

    The aim of the newly-formed group is to bring together those working in the field to ensure the City Region and wider area is well placed to support and stimulate the development of clean alternatives for some of the highest emitters that are also critical for the UK economy.

    The switch to planes, ships, lorries, and buses away from fossil fuels would not only reduce emissions and improve air quality, but create jobs, encourage innovation and support inward investment.

    Those present heard how the south east - and Greater Brighton in particular - was well placed to lead the UK effort, thanks to its high population density, proximity to London and Europe, and sunny, windy and coastal climate.

    The next stage for the group will be to promote two clear aims: support the production of hydrogen and promote the development and uptake of hydrogen vehicles. 

    Work on both is progressing at pace with plans including a new hydrogen plant at Shoreham Port and the world’s first commercially-led deployment of fuel cell buses in Crawley.

    Councillor Phélim Mac Cafferty, Leader of Brighton & Hove City Council and Greater Brighton Economic Board’s lead on Green Growth, said:“I’m delighted to support the launch of Hydrogen Sussex, which is key towards the drive for zero carbon economy and placing Greater Brighton at the forefront of the hydrogen revolution.

    “Bringing together all the important partners, the new group will support this game-changing technology. There’s huge potential to assist our City Region’s journey to net zero, drastically improve air quality locally and provide substantial economic benefits to the City Region and the wider Sussex region as we recover from the pandemic.

    “This is the first step of many to develop our region as a UK leader in this field. There is much to do but this has launched us off the starting block.”

    Hydrogen Sussex grew out of the Greater Brighton Energy Plan which launched in 2020. 

    Its broad membership, led by the Greater Brighton, has world leading thinkers, engineers and enterprises, including local authorities, universities, a world leading engineering firm, airports, ports, buses, major consultancies, utilities companies, Coast to Capital LEP, and the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).

    The work also backs the GB10, Greater Brighton’s 10 pledges on the environment, which includes commitments to promote clean fuel.

    Opening the meeting, Maria Caulfield, MP for Lewes, said: “Hydrogen is critical to the green industrial revolution and has potential to make an impact at a local national and global level. Given our location close to London and Europe, we are really well placed to be leading on this.

    “It will be a challenging task ahead but - as the development of a COVID vaccine has shown - with the right purpose and right people we can achieve what some people may think is impossible. I look forward to following the progress of Hydrogen Sussex.”

    Abigail Dombey, Chair of Hydrogen Sussex said: “We are compelled to move at an unprecedented pace to deliver the innovation, investment, regulation and the market environment that will enable the required step change towards net zero. 

    “Our vision is for Sussex to become a leading Hydrogen region in hydrogen production and the development and uptake of hydrogen vehicles. Hydrogen is not just an energy and emissions reduction opportunity; it could also have an important role in generating new economic opportunities in the region.”

    Hydrogen Sussex has already helped facilitate conversations and projects between members. 

    Brighton & Hove Buses and engineering and environmental consultancy Ricardo are now working together on a project to convert existing buses to hydrogen fuel cells. 

    The bus company is planning to introduce 54 hydrogen buses in Crawley with Metrobus; this would be a world first commercially led application in the bus industry and the largest deployment of fuel cell buses in Europe.

    Steve Dyke, Managing Director of Ricardo Automotive and Industrial said: “Ricardo is already working with a range of clients on hydrogen and fuel cell technology, providing clean efficient solutions which reduce carbon and noxious emissions across a wide range of sectors.”

    “We are investing £2.5million in a hydrogen development and test facility at our Shoreham Technical Centre in West Sussex. Our plan is to grow a globally recognised centre of excellence for hydrogen, defossilised fuels and electrified transport engineering in the south-east of the UK.  

    “It will be at the heart of a local hydrogen eco-system consisting of technology development, supply and use of hydrogen. Through Hydrogen Sussex, we want to bring together industrial partners, local universities, utility companies, transport operators, and policy makers and draw on their capabilities as part of a unique collaborative hub.”

    The bid to encourage the development of hydrogen comes as one the group’s members, Shoreham Port, announces it has begun work on an ambitious new partnership with H2evolution to create a green hydrogen hub.

    Pending planning, it could be operational by 2024 and generate 2,400 tonnes of hydrogen a year  - enough to power 300 buses and avoid 42,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide a year.

    Tom Willis, Chief Executive at Shoreham Port commented “Through the creation of our hydrogen hub, which will supply zero emission green hydrogen, Shoreham Port can form part of the solution to the region’s net-zero challenges. 

    “As a community organisation we would like to work with everyone to make this new stage of the Port’s growth a success. The new plant will be clean, quiet and create good quality jobs at the Port and within the wider community.”

  • 17 March 2021 9:08 AM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Sussex Virtual Business Expo

    Date: Wednesday 28th April 
    10am - 12pm. 2pm - 4pm
    £10 for both sessions 

    Bringing Sussex businesses together

    • Open networking 
    • Panel discussions 
    • Live Q&A's 
    • Exhibitors 
    • Giveaways 

    2 hours in the morning with a speaker and 2 hours in the afternoon with a speaker

    For more information contact or call him on 07885490266 

  • 17 March 2021 9:04 AM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Worthing Theatres and Museum receive a grant of £1,834 from the Theatres Trust: Theatres Reopening Fund.

    Worthing Theatres and Museum has received a grant of £1,834 to aid in preparations for reopening all venues later this year. WTM have done everything possible with the resources available to ensure audiences still have access to arts and creativity during a time when it is needed more than ever. This funding will further support the WTM staff team in working safely on and off site to create and curate work for their in-person and digital audiences; and allow the organisation to purchase additional equipment to ensure the safety and confidence of their audiences as the venues reopen.

    Last autumn Worthing Theatres and Museum successfully trialled the gradual reopening of all its venues. Including the reopening of Worthing Museum, a fantastic season of stand-up comedy, stunning Screen Arts line-up and a magical family Christmas show. Additional measures and safety procedures already introduced include socially distanced seating; PPE for all staff; ensuring hand sanitiser is available throughout their venues; clear signage displaying Covid-19 safety messaging; using electronic ticketing in place of paper tickets; one way systems and exits; and offering audiences the opportunity order refreshments through an app and that refreshments are delivered directly to their seats.

    The support from the Theatres Reopening Fund, administered by the Theatres Trust, will allow WTM to further prepare for a full reopening funding additional equipment to keep our team and audiences safe and connected. Including Perspex screens to allow staff to work safely within the venues, an additional fogger and the necessary antibacterial spray solution that ensures we are able to reopen multiple venues, have multiple performances at a time and continue our rigorous cleaning and disinfecting procedures and LED screens used to display essential safety information and Covid-19 messaging in a variety of formats so that audiences can see and understand messaging.

    CEO Amanda O’Reilly says ‘We are looking forward to reopening and welcoming our community back into the venues as soon as we are able to do so. The support of the Theatres Trust will aid in preparations for reopening, facilitating additional measures that will help ensure the safety of our audiences and the WTM team.’ 

    As a charitable organisation WTM rely on the support of audiences and the community to develop our programme on stage and screen, in our museum, and within the community. If you would like to find out more about supporting WTM, you can at

    The Theatres Reopening Fund is administered by the Theatres Trust with the aim of supporting theatres with reopening following several months of closure. Helping cover costs such as building improvements and purchasing equipment that will support the theatre to be able to open viably and safely.

    Theatres Trust Director Jon Morgan comments, ‘While not all theatres are able to open right now, Theatres Trust is pleased to be able to help more theatres to prepare for a time when they can welcome audiences back into their buildings, safe in the knowledge they are providing Covid-safe spaces for people to enjoy the live entertainment that has been so missed in 2020.’ 

    For more information on how you can support WTM and the safety measures in place for reopening visit

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Worthing & Adur Chamber of Commerce is the trading name of Worthing & Adur Chamber of Commerce & Industry Ltd.
Company registered in England & Wales. Company number: 00345261.  
VAT No: 275 6477 60
Registered Office: Sphere Business Centre, Broadwater Road, Worthing,
West Sussex BN14 8HJ
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