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

Don't forget, as a member one of your many benefits is being able to submit your press releases and news for inclusion here as well as on either the members or business enews and social media. Please submit to 

  • 02 June 2021 11:05 AM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Bouncing Back from COVID-19 Summit

    Tim Loughton MP is hosting a summit, all businesses in Worthing and Adur are welcome to attend for free.

    The event will include presentations from Mims Davies MP - Employment Minister, Worthing DWP employment advisors and representatives from Adur & Worthing Councils.

    - What challenges are you facing coming out of lockdown?

    - What support does your business need with recruiting and training staff?

    - How can Central Government, Local Government and DWP help?

    To book email

  • 01 June 2021 1:18 PM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Alex Leads the Way on ICAEW Apprenticeship Scheme

    Investment in young talent continues to reap benefits at MHA Carpenter Box, with news that Alex Kent has become the first apprentice at the firm to gain Associate Chartered Accountant (ACA) status. 

    Alex, who lives in East Grinstead, joined the Sussex-based accountancy firm’s Audit & Assurance team at Gatwick in July 2017 after graduating from Canterbury Christ Church University. He started out on a traditional trainee route at MHA Carpenter Box, but then moved onto the ICAEW apprenticeship to develop his skills and enhance his career opportunities.

    Alex commented: “I am very grateful for the support that MHA Carpenter Box has given me throughout my training and would highly recommend the apprenticeship scheme to any young person interested in becoming a fully qualified accountant.

    “The scheme provides structure, and the support of a ‘talent coach’ is also invaluable in building confidence and progressing through the programme.”

    MHA Carpenter Box Managing Partner, Alan Edwards, said: “We have always taken our role of training the next generation of accountants, tax and business advisers very seriously and continue to invest heavily in emerging talent.

    “We know that prospects for young people have been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic, so as a firm we are determined to continue offering opportunities to school and college leavers. Alex is the first of our young recruits on the apprenticeship scheme to qualify as an ACA and we now offer this route to qualification to all our trainees joining the firm.”

    MHA Carpenter Box operates from offices in Worthing, Brighton, Gatwick and Chichester.

  • 01 June 2021 8:54 AM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Learning in the Landscape 

    Get out into the fresh air and explore a unique collaboration of two local charities, bringing together the stunning beauty of the Petworth Park with the learning expertise of Aspire Sussex. 

    Whether through the lens of a camera, the touch of a brush, stroke of a pencil or stretch of a limb, discover a new way to see Petworth and your own creative abilities within a truly unique environment. 

    Our range of courses start from June 9th, with short and full day courses available, there really is something to suit every interest level and pocket.  

    For more information and to book your learning experience, visit our Eventbrite page or click on the individual course details below.

  • 18 May 2021 11:04 AM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    7 ways to improve your networking and meeting skills

    The new networking

    A couple of years ago we wrote a blog about improving networking skills. Now, as we return to face to face meetings following the Pandemic, the landscape has dramatically changed and yet the skills required for meetings and networking have largely remained the same. So should we be doing slightly different things when it comes to virtual networking as opposed to face to face? Well, it depends…

    How much time do you have? 

    Everyone working from home over the last few months has been hard for some and a blessing for others. We have all learnt how to use online meeting platforms and become comfortable with ‘meeting each other’ via screens. This does save on travel time but, if you’re virtually networking, it means you have to be really clear vocally about what you’re after, because it’s much harder to display your body language via a screen. However, no matter how virtual life gets, people will still always buy people – so, in business, making time for face to face networking is still vitally important. Surely a hybrid of virtual and actual networking will be the way forward?

    We do a lot of networking both virtually and face to face. Virtual networking allows us to reach beyond our usual geographical area without having to travel, but we still think face to face networking forms a stronger bond in less time. We have attended all sorts of groups and meetings at various times of day. We often joke that we could become the size of a house and have no time to do any work if we attended all the actual meetings to which we were invited, so how do you pick the right ones and then make them work for you? Here are our top tips:

    1. Prioritise meetings according to your current business goals 

    Who are you aiming at when finding new business? What geographical area are you looking at? (and does it matter?) If the meeting does not fit within your business goals then don’t waste your time attending.

    2. Who is going to be there? Don't know? Ask the organiser! 

    Find out if the other people attending are worth 2 hours of your working day (plus travel time if it’s face to face). We often find that lunches take the longest working chunk out of the day, so we tend to go for breakfasts and evenings. Everyone is different however and sometimes the attendee list really does make it worth attending whatever the time of day.

    3. You will fit into some groups better than others 

    Some groups (a bit like the ones on LinkedIn) will be a better fit for you. We have walked into some networking groups and almost seen the tumbleweed blow across the floor as we introduced ourselves. Whereas others we’ve been made very welcome at. Don’t be disheartened if you don’t get a great feel from one group – there are lots of different types to try and you will find one that suits you.

    4. Manage your expectations 

    As with all marketing, you will not achieve much from just one try. Networking is about building relationships with people, which happens over time. Maintaining relationships takes effort – so we return to your business goals – is this meeting really worth it?

    5. Make your elevator pitch relevant 

    If there is just one person in that room with whom you’d love to do business, aim your pitch at their needs. Make it short – many groups do a 60 seconds round but some only allow 10 second introductions – so have a couple of pitches up your sleeve ready to go and practice them. Don’t forget to practice them. Oh, and did I say about practising them?

    6. Have your details ready to give out 

    This might be an obvious statement, but you would not believe how many people we’ve met when networking who have not filled in their online profile or (at face to face meetings) have run out of business cards! If you have any merchandising or other marketing collateral, then check with the organiser to see if it’s OK to bring along or email people too. Everyone still loves a freebie and if it’s got your company name on it then so much the better – but do check with the organiser first.

    7. Relax and enjoy it 

    This might be hard to do if you’ve had to get up at stupid o’clock in the morning or if you’re worrying about a deadline when you know you might be out of the office for 3 hours. Don’t attend if the work is more important, there will always be next time. When you’re out there ‘being your business’ you have to be on top of your game. You can’t do that if you’re stressed. You have nothing to lose when attending networking meetings, so just go and enjoy it.

  • 14 May 2021 9:28 AM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Worthing based educational business, TeachAllAboutIt, wins SME 2021 UK Enterprise Awards

    Founded in 2017, Worthing based TeachAllAboutIt has this week been announced as the 2021 UK Enterprise Awards Best Educational Resource and Private Tuition Provider in West Sussex by SME News.

    Back in February 2021, TeachAllAboutIt were invited to take part in the 5th UK Enterprise Awards, which this year are hosted by SME News, alongside a variety of other small and medium sized businesses across the UK.

    In an unexpected announcement made on the 10th of May 2021, they were delighted to hear they had won the award for Best Educational Resource and Private Tuition Provider in West Sussex. Founder & Director, Holly Billinghurst, responding to the news said,

    “TeachAllAboutIt was invited to apply for the 2021 UK Enterprise Awards some months ago and promptly returned to our day-to-day activities, supporting our learners. With the changes and upheaval in education over the past few months we had completely forgotten about our application and were over the moon to receive the email.”

    She continued,

    “Expanding the business to open our Worthing tuition centre in July 2020 in the middle of a pandemic, may have been seen by some as reckless, but the vision to bring education to all in an environment that suits the individual is built on the idea of adaptability and change.

    Forced back to online working in December 2020 with the Second Lockdown, enabled us to support other local businesses to make the best of the new online teaching and meetings technology and, at the same time, expand our private student numbers with the aim of embedding blended learning.

    Now that the country is reopening for business, our students have access to the best of both worlds and as demonstrated through our 100% pass rates since 2017, we are embracing the positive lessons learnt from remote working.”

    Jessie Wilson, Award Co-Ordinator, SME News, says 

    It goes without saying that this is a fantastic achievement for TeachAllAboutIT and truly represents all of your hard work and driven determination paying off! “

    Concludes Holly,

    “With the summer term approaching, we are well underway planning our next few months - fully reopening the tuition centre in West Worthing, hosting business IT training courses and providing private tuition for our younger learners.”

  • 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

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