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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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  • 30 July 2020 11:41 AM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Adur Community Leisure: Statement from Leader of Adur District Council

    The leader of Adur District Council assured residents that it will take all steps possible to secure sustainable leisure services in the future following the announcement that the company running centres has placed itself into voluntary liquidation..

    Adur Community Leisure, an arm of the Impulse Leisure company, runs all leisure and recreational services from three centres in the district as well as the Gym Hub in Worthing and the leisure centre at Storrington. Its collapse places 150 jobs at risk.

    The leisure centres affected in Adur are Lancing Manor Leisure Centre, Southwick Leisure Centre and Wadurs Community Pool in Shoreham which are all owned by Adur District Council. The Council awarded Impulse a 30-year contract to run leisure services out of the centres in 2005. Any financial surplus goes to the company, not to the Council, in addition to the Council paying an annual Service Fee to ACL to deliver the services.  

    Given the costs required by ACL to get them through this lockdown period in addition to its own existing running costs and the current stability of the company, the Council's view was that there was a substantial risk that any public money loaned will not be recovered. 

    The money originally asked for, more than £1m, was more than half of the Council’s working reserves. This request was withdrawn at the last minute ahead of a meeting of the Council which was set to make a decision and a subsequent new lower bid was submitted. This was being considered when the company made its announcement.

    Leader of the Council, Cllr Neil Parkin, said, ‘We are very sorry this has happened and our sympathies go out to those whose jobs are now threatened.

    ‘The Council has done everything possible to support Impulse moving forward. But we also have a duty to local taxpayers to ensure that local services are operated efficiently and cannot place a large financial burden on the authority to prop up an external organisation.

    ‘We found ourselves in an impossible situation in that the sums asked of us were far too large with a significant risk that we wouldn’t get it back and that the operators would still fail.

    This latest news proves we were right to be circumspect

    ‘However we will begin the process right now of finding a way to return leisure services to the community. ‘ 

  • 30 July 2020 11:35 AM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Water and energy projects unveiled by Greater Brighton to combat climate change and trigger “Green Growth” recovery

    An ambitious programme of water and energy conservation projects has been unveiled by the Greater Brighton city region as it bids to “grow back greener” from the lockdown crisis.

    Amid continuing population growth in the region, water supplies under pressure and energy use growing, Greater Brighton is seizing the initiative to initiate, support and coordinate scores of projects which will help the environment and lead a sustainable economic recovery.

    After working on the plan for more than a year, the energy and water projects were unveiled at a meeting of the Greater Brighton Economic Board (GBEB).

    The projects, which have a combined value of £530 million and could create 35,000 jobs, include:

    • Retrofitting thousands of homes to improve energy efficiency
    • Using solar power to supply energy to public buildings and the rail network
    • Achieving water use neutrality in the region despite the influx of 97,000 more people by 2030
    • Supporting local heat networks using natural ground heat to cut out fossil fuels
    • Backing schemes to use hydrogen as an alternative fuel for transport
    • Lobbying for the restoration of kelp beds off our coast to capture carbon
    • Developing water recycling projects for domestic use on new estates
    • Rapidly increasing the network of Electric Vehicle charging points

    These and other schemes are aimed at achieving zero carbon emissions from the Greater Brighton region well before the government’s own target of 2050 and reducing household water consumption to 100 litres a day by 2040 as the region is facing a daily deficit of 90 million litres a day in that time.

    Yesterday GBEB backed the schemes and agreed to begin immediately lobbying the government for funding. It is estimated that 700,000 jobs across the UK could be created if such schemes were adopted.

    The chairman of the Greater Brighton Infrastructure Panel, Ian McAulay, who is also Chief Executive Officer of Southern Water, said: “These energy and water reports have taken hours of work and involved people with fantastic expertise from the private and public sector across Greater Brighton. There are some genuinely exciting and innovative projects which can help us on the road to economic recovery from the pandemic and, as importantly, will make a significant contribution to the environmental protection of our region. 

    “We cannot forget in all this that we live in one of the most water-stressed parts of the country and our carbon emissions are still too high.

    “The strength of Greater Brighton is that our councils, universities, environment groups and companies like my own can pool our expertise, use our combined strength to get these projects moving forward and the combined skills and talents of our people to effect real change in this region.”

    As well as Southern Water, the Environment Agency, UK Power Networks and Community Energy South were involved in the panel work with Greater Brighton members making it one of the most authoritative studies on green growth ever seen in the south.

    GBEB members agreed to receive regular updates on progress and sign up to a Greater Brighton 10 Pledge environmental commitment at their next meeting in October.

    Cllr Daniel Humphreys, GBEB Chairman, said: “The projects put forward are ambitious, innovative and achievable, with the potential to deliver real change for our communities. We now must put forward a compelling case for investment so that we can capitalise on the expertise that the City Region has in this all important sector.”

  • 22 July 2020 1:33 PM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Adur & Worthing Councils Covid Business Recovery Survey

    The purpose of this survey is to understand the immediate challenges facing our local business community. We will use the results of this survey to continue to inform local Recovery Plan and decision making over the coming 6 - 8 months.

    This survey has been specifically designed to be completely anonymous and unidentifiable. Respondents are not required to disclose their business name. All responses are treated as confidential and anonymous. Additionally, raw data will not be disclosed or seen by anyone other than nominated officers processing the results. We therefore urge businesses to be as honest and truthful in their responses as possible. This will help us, Job Centre Plus and the Worthing & Adur Chamber of Commerce formulate a more cohesive, wrap around business recovery plan across the area.

    Any business that wishes to discuss their current needs separately to this survey can also email Angela Crane, for a confidential discussion
    If you aren’t sure of your answer, please use your best estimate.

    Click here to complete the survey

  • 22 July 2020 1:23 PM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Two creative exhibitions come to Worthing seafront

    Worthing seafront is hosting two pop-up creative exhibitions this summer - the latest in a series of efforts to support local businesses to get up and running again post COVID and provide attractions for people to visit the town centre and seafront. 

    Two seafront shelters - at Steyne Gardens and at the West Buildings - have been temporarily transformed into art galleries, to showcase the work of local artists. 

    Local artist sisters, Stella and Gem, otherwise known as the Two Faced Twins, have taken up a summer residency at the seafront shelter at Steyne Gardens where they will be exhibiting their signature bold and bright artwork, which includes a number of well-known Worthing landmarks. The art gallery will be open from Saturday 25 July.  

    The West Buildings shelter is hosting an photography exhibition entitled ‘By the Sea’ which has been supported by Worthing’s creative hub, Colonnade House. The exhibition presents the work of six local artists: 

    • Christopher Pledger who photographs seaweed in the style of Victorian botanical illustrations
    • Stuart Hutchinson and Len Brook who capture Worthing’s award-winning pier and seafront landmarks in changing light and changing weather. 
    • Mandy Williams who photographs people through the weathered and scratched glass in a seafront shelter. 
    • Nicky Bell who regularly photographs the sea from her studio and on her daily walks. 
    • Rebecca McCardle who creates imaginary sea creatures from repurposed objects.

    Clare Halstead, Creative Hub Manager at Colonnade House said:

    “The arts and creative industries have had a difficult time during Covid, with exhibitions closed and freelance work drying up. This is a great opportunity to bring the work of photographers who have exhibited at Colonnade House and Worthing Museum to a wider audience.”

    Cllr Kevin Jenkins, Worthing Borough Council’s Executive Member for Regeneration, said: 

    “We’re delighted to be able to put to good use the shelters to support local artists to showcase their work and add vibrancy to our seafront this summer, creating other locations, to the already popular East Beach Artists Quarter, to support creative businesses as we ease out of lockdown.”

    Worthing Borough Council is continuing its longer-term plans for the development of both sites as part of its seafront regeneration programme.

  • 22 July 2020 1:12 PM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Reopening of Worthing leisure centres welcomed

    Worthing Borough Council today welcomed the news that fitness fans will be able to use leisure facilities in the town from this weekend (Saturday July 25) .

    South Downs Leisure, a registered charity which operates Worthing Leisure Centre, Splashpoint, Field Place Manor House & Barns and Davison Leisure Centre, has introduced a range of measures to ensure their facilities will be safe and welcoming once COVID restrictions are lifted.

    This will ensure all four centres will reopen in some form in the coming weeks, offering gym space, exercise classes, as well as squash, badminton and tennis, to thousands of members and visitors.

    However, due to the high operational costs and difficulty to maintain social distancing, the swimming pools at Splashpoint will temporarily remain closed.

    This will be reviewed once the charity are happy that their other centres are working well with all safety restrictions in place.

    Worthing Borough Council, which has handed responsibility for the running of its leisure facilities to South Downs Leisure, supported the move.

    Cllr Edward Crouch, Worthing Borough Council’s Executive Member for Digital & Environmental Services, said: “This is great news for residents, who will be able to get their fitness fix in safe and welcoming facilities, and great news for South Downs Leisure, which does a fantastic job running our centres while contributing a huge amount to the wider community.

    “Reopening facilities after four months is not an easy task but I’ve been impressed with the steps and care that the management team at South Downs has taken to ready these valuable resources for action.

    “While I appreciate that some will be disappointed the swimming pools will not immediately reopen, the safety of staff and customers must come first in these unprecedented times.” 

    Ahead of reopening South Downs Leisure has implemented a range of measures derived from Government, Public Health, UK Active and National Governing Body guidelines.

    Worthing Leisure Centre will be offering one of the largest gym spaces on the south coast, with plenty of room to socially distance and still make use of all the equipment. There will also be an extensive exercise class programme in various studios, as well as squash and table tennis.

    Davison Leisure Centre will offer badminton, tennis and table tennis, in addition to the fitness studio, while Field Place will offer a number of exercise classes aimed at mind and body, such as Pilates, yoga and mindfulness.

    Splashpoint Leisure Centre will be opening on Saturday 1st August, to offer a number of exercise classes in two different studios, as well as their gym with stunning sea views. 

    Duncan Anderson, South Downs Leisure CEO, said: “We are delighted to be able to reopen our centres and welcome back our members. The changes and restrictions we’ve put in place should hopefully mean that visitors to our centres do so with the peace of mind that they can exercise safely and with minimal risk.”

    He added: “We expect our members to be understandably disappointed that swimming at Splashpoint will not be opening with our other services. We too are sad to not be able to offer this, but the safety of our customers and the longevity of our charity are the most important aspects here. We want to be around to get our members active long into the future and not opening the pools straight away safeguards this to some extent. We will work to get the pools open as soon as we feel it is achievable.”

    For further updates on the reopening of South Downs Leisure’s facilities and their new timetables, visit

  • 22 July 2020 12:48 PM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Now open: Free fast-track training programme culminating with the opportunity to recruit for a fully-funded 6-week graduate intern.

    The University of Brighton and the University of Sussex, working in partnership and with funding from the European Social Fund, are pleased to introduce you to an exciting new training and internship programme.

    The STEP-UP Programme is co-funded by the European Social Fund (ESF) as part of the 2014-2020 European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme in England.

    Grant Reference: 04S18P02524

    STEP-UP is an innovative fast-track training programme for local SMEs that will allow them to identify the skills they need, and access talented graduates to help them grow their business through fully funded six-week internships.

    How does it work?

    • The programme consists of five workshops, consisting of industry-leading 'Action Learning Sets' to help participants identify and address current skills issues in their organisations.
    • Alongside this, there will also be expert-led masterclasses on topics most in demand by SMEs looking to recruit graduates.
    • It is also an excellent opportunity for local businesses to network with each other and their local universities to access talented graduates now and into the future.

    Final-year students will attend a specialised programme, that reflects the skills needed by SMEs, and they will be available to apply for a fully-funded internships with the participating employers which will take place after their graduation in summer 2021.

    For more information on the programme and instructions on how to apply for place, we have a dedicated website at

    Please contact us via if you have any further questions, and we look forward to hearing from you soon.

  • 22 July 2020 12:40 PM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Safe in Sussex’s annual Shocking Shirts & Funky Frocks Day goes ahead virtually

    At the end of June Safe in Sussex went ahead with their Shocking Shirts and Funky Frocks Day virtually.

    Shocking Shirts and Funky Frocks is held the last Friday of June which coincides with National Cream Tea Day.

    We kicked off the day on Facebook sharing a medley that Noel Lincoln a pianist made for us just for Shocking Shirts and Funky Frocks Day.

    Many people and organisations got involved virtually from individual businesses like Zorina Bradshaw from Tickety-Box , Jess Haslett with her Kinesiology business and Liz Ranger from Arise Ltd.  Kate Henwood of Kate Henwood Photography made delicious cream teas enabling people to participate in National Cream Tea Day

    All the branches of Santander Bank in Sussex and Surrey participated. Emily Wild, Community Hub Director said “  For me, getting involved with the Shocking Shirts and Funky Frocks day throughout the Santander branches in Sussex and Surrey was an opportunity to raise awareness for colleagues and customers of domestic abuse and how the charity supports people in these circumstances.

    As a high street bank our role has never been more important to support customers and raising awareness of domestic abuse including financial abuse which can be identified in our roles.  This event enabled us to educate our teams, communities and in turn be able to support our customers who may be a victim of domestic abuse.   In addition, we were able to have some fun in our very different attire and raise funds in branches through conversations with customers regarding the great work the charity provides”.

    Also members of the South Coast Business Networking and Mumpreneur Networking Club took part in Shocking Shirts and Funky Frocks as they held their meetings but via Zoom now.  The Mumpreneurs Networking Club have been amazing at supporting Safe in Sussex throughout the Covid-19 pandemic raising £500 last month when they held a record-breaking virtual networking meeting of 100 people on Zoom.  

    Debbie West Community Fundraiser for Safe in Sussex said “We have had to change how we fundraise due to Covid-19, making use of virtual opportunities.  We are delighted and thankful that despite this many people took part in our Shocking Shirts and Funky Frocks Day and helped raise awareness of our work.”

    Email: Website:

  • 22 July 2020 12:24 PM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Business Continuity & Intellectual Property

    Strategic Management Partners helps organisations to become more successful.

    They facilitate organisational change, business growth and individual professional development. Our role as an independent consultancy is to support you with the objective and practical advice and opportunities to develop your business skills and improve your organisation’s effectiveness.

    From a wealth of business expertise and experience, Business Continuity and Intellectual Property are specific areas Clive Bonny specialises in.

    Chamber Member, Clive Bonny has released a number of free short videos to help SME's protect their IP trademarks and designs. Click here to view the videos.

  • 22 July 2020 12:19 PM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Virtual Summer Fayre Raises Over £1,800 for Veterans’ Charity

    On Saturday 11th July, supporters of Worthing-based charity, Care for Veterans, held stalls outside their homes, selling items to raise vital funds as part of the charity’s Virtual Summer Fayre. 
    The charity’s longest standing event, the Summer Fayre, unfortunately had to be cancelled this year due to the current situation regarding coronavirus. This is one of the only times the Summer Fayre has not taken place since WWII.  
    From Warrington to Worthing, stall holders lined the streets with bakes, plants and pre-loved items, and together raised an incredible £1,805. 
    Event organiser, Phoebe Tether, said: “The Summer Fayre usually provides us with a chance to invite the community in and show off Care for Veterans. This year, we had to rely upon our wonderful community to support our event virtually. We are so grateful for the effort that our supporters put in to promote and run their stalls and helped to raise this fantastic amount for our veterans. 
    With all of our events postponed or cancelled this year, we have lost a major source of income, so we are extremely grateful to those who are supporting us in any way they can.”

  • 22 July 2020 10:41 AM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Sunflower Memories help fund local hospice care

    Throughout August, there will be a display of colourful sunflower markers at St Barnabas House, each bearing the name of a loved one for whom a donation has been made. As well as enabling people to remember the life of a loved one, the Sunflower Memories Appeal will help to ensure that St Barnabas can continue to care for others as every donation will go directly towards providing vital care services, both at the hospice and for patients needing support in their own homes.

    David Rolf, 81 from Shoreham-by-Sea, and his daughter, Launa Rolf will be dedicating a sunflower to their beloved wife and mother, Mary Rolf, who spent nearly six weeks as a patient at the hospice before her death on 9 February 2019.

    Discovering his wife, Mary, had Stage 4 ovarian cancer was so shocking to David that it remains to this day as immediate as when he first heard the shattering news.

    “Mary had always made it clear that she wanted to spend her last days in the care of the hospice where she would feel safe,” he said.

    “Thanks to the outstanding clinical and other care that Mary received, shortly before the end I said to her, ‘Are you calm?’, to which she whispered, ‘Yes’, and, ‘Are you in any pain?’, ‘No’. Absolutely everyone did everything to make Mary’s last weeks peaceful.

    “How can I repay the huge debt of gratitude that I owe to everyone concerned? Impossible I believe, apart from continuing to do what I can to support the hospice’s inspiring care for all who come to it in need.”

    David’s daughter, Launa, has only commendation and praise for St Barnabas House after the care her mum received during her final days at the hospice.

    “What overwhelmed us was that whilst Mum was being treated at the hospice she continued to live on with her unique individuality where her own strengths were considered every single day by the people who cared for and engaged with her,” she said.

    “The room where she spent her days was beautiful; airy and bright, overlooking a garden where she would watch the bushes and trees in the wind, rain and sunshine. She enjoyed watching the birds who visited and ate from the bird feeders; this became such an important aspect to Mum’s psychological wellbeing, knowing that a little of the outside was with her inside her room.

    “She enjoyed watching the birds who visited and ate from the bird feeders; this became such an important aspect to mum’s psychological wellbeing, knowing that a little of the outside was with her inside her room.”

    This year, due to the coronavirus pandemic, the usual gathering at the hospice will be replaced with a special virtual dedication on Friday 21 August. This will enable everyone to take part, including those that are still shielding or self-isolating.

    An online dedication page has been set up to allow supporters to pay tribute to their loved one, by adding photos and a personal message so memories can be shared with family and friends, wherever they are in the world.

    To take part in Sunflower Memories and make an online dedication 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
© 2018 Worthing & Adur Chamber

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