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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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  • 03 June 2020 9:34 AM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Prestigious Queen’s Award won by Turning Tides

    The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service is the highest award a voluntary group can receive in the UK and on the 2nd June it will be announced that this prestigious accolade is being awarded to - Turning Tides. We are one of just 230 selected organisations across the country who are to receive the award, which celebrates the huge contribution made by the voluntary sector to benefit the lives of others in their community.

    Chief Executive, John Holmstrom is delighted:
    “Our charity was founded on the sheer effort, spirit and tenacity of a group of volunteers who wanted to make a real difference to those locally who had nowhere to call home. This award is dedicated to them and all the volunteers we have had supporting us throughout our 28 years. Their dedication, passion and selflessness continues to be invaluable. Even now, when the nation faces it’s biggest crisis, our volunteers have reshaped the support they offer us and our clients.”

    We are one of the largest providers of homeless services for single people in West Sussex, running 21 projects in various locations across the county. We have almost 300 volunteers and 140 paid staff supporting its mission to end local homelessness.

    Our charity is currently seeing a steep rise in the need for our services across the county due to the Covid pandemic. Prior to Covid, we already supported 200 clients in residential projects and 245 homeless people through outreach work. Now, we are supporting as many as a further 150 homeless men and women who have been temporarily housed in hotels to protect them from the virus. This number is set to grow as the virus escalates financial hardship. These exceptional circumstances led us to launch our first ever Emergency Appeal asking for support from the community:

    Our volunteers have had a big part to play in responding to the crisis and they continue to find new ways of supporting homeless men and women by batch cooking meals and delivering essential food, clothing and hygiene supplies. Turning Tides’ volunteers also offer much needed warmth, support and friendship to homeless people. Paul, a former client, recalls how precious the care and warmth he received from volunteers at St Clare’s Community Hub (Worthing) was:

    “I had been living on the streets for 2 years. I was profoundly distressed, scared and alone when I came to St Clare’s for help… I recall the warmth and humanity of the volunteers in the kitchen. These memories still move me today at a time when I’m so relieved to say, my life is in good shape now.”

    Community Development Manager, Alison Nicholson highlights, “The volunteering spirit truly thrives in our charity and we are thrilled to have this acknowledged by the award. In the last financial year (2019-2020) almost 300 volunteers collectively gave over 18,000 hours of their time to support our charity. For our volunteers to be recognised nationally for their outstanding energy and efforts in our community is wonderful.”

    Representatives of Turning Tides will receive the award from Mrs Susan Pyper, Lord Lieutenant of West Sussex later this summer with the possibility that some volunteers might attend a garden party at Buckingham Palace in May 2021.

    For more information on Turning Tides, visit

  • 03 June 2020 9:21 AM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Pair complete epic 2,000 mile exercise challenge for local hospice

    Blake Harman, 27, and Beth Smith, 18, have cycled, run and walked a mammoth 2,000 miles in May in memory of Holly Edwards, who passed away aged 22.

    The pair have already raised a fantastic £475 for St Barnabas House, who cared for Holly both at her home and at the hospice during her battle with sarcoma, a very rare cancer which affected Holly’s bones and soft tissue. Holly sadly died at the hospice in May 2019.

    Blake’s inspiration for the charity challenge came from his sister, Paige, and her friendship with Holly. He says, “Holly was a fighter and the most genuine person you could ever meet. She was such an inspirational person in my sister’s life. The heartbreak Paige went through when she lost her best friend had a massive effect on her.”

    Lockdown restrictions meant that a charity football match organised by Blake’s sister,

    in memory of her best friend had to be cancelled.

    Determined to find another way to support his sister through her grief and raise money for the hospice, Blake says, “The idea came to me late one night. I messaged my friend Beth and she agreed to join me. We were both half asleep and I don’t think we realised what a crazy distance we had committed to take on!”

    Blake, who lives in North Lancing and Beth, who lives in Steyning, have cycled, walked and run over 66 miles a day between them throughout May, making the most of home exercise bikes when outdoor exercise was restricted during lockdown.

    The pair met up on Wednesday 27 May to cycle the last 40-mile leg together, two metres apart, and are thrilled to have completed their 2,000-mile target before the end of the month.

    Blake says, “It’s the hardest challenge that Beth and I have taken on. We’re both exhausted and ache so badly, but we’re really happy to have completed the distance and finished early.”

    Blake’s sister, Paige Harman, 22 says, “I’d like to thank both my brother and Beth and everyone who has donated for helping to raise money and awareness for Holly.

    “I saw for myself how high the quality of care is at St Barnabas and I know Holly and her family appreciated everything the team did to help her through such a hard time.

    “Holly was the biggest part of my life and losing her was heart-breaking. Before she passed away, she asked us to raise money for St Barnabas in her memory, so that’s exactly what my family and I will continue to do every year!”

    It’s not too late to make a donation. Visit to show your support.

  • 02 June 2020 3:43 PM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    D Day Veteran Nears Completion of Charity Challenge  

    Since April, Normandy Veteran, Len Gibbon, 96, has been recreating his historic D Day journey by cycling the distance from Portsmouth to Gold Beach on a static bike. He aims to complete the 104-mile distance by 6th June, which will mark the 76th anniversary of the first Normandy landings, all in aid of Worthing-based charity, Care for Veterans.  
    Fellow Normandy veteran, Peter Hawkins, 95, is supporting Len with his challenge by cycling his own 104-miles. Peter also landed at Gold Beach a few days after the invasion started. The men are cycling on separate occasions, of course, to ensure they adhere to social distancing guidelines. 
    Both men are residents at Care for Veterans, which provides care and rehabilitation to physically disabled ex-Service personnel and their families. The charity receives no regular government funding and must raise £1.9 million this year to provide its award-winning care to the veterans who live there. 

    Len has lived at Care for Veterans since December 2019. He realised he needed extra help after having several falls at home and his walking had become unbalanced. He loves dancing and so the physiotherapists at the charity incorporate this into his sessions; he loves to do the ‘Cha Cha’.

    He said, “Although I’m 96, I still like to be doing something. I like to have a dance at the concerts they have sometimes. I have physio as well, which I really enjoy. I'm doing this challenge to help raise money for Care for Veterans because it's a wonderful place. It's going really well so far, hopefully I'll finish on time!"
    Len’s challenge comes at a time when the charity needs it most. Due to the current situation, many of the events and initiatives that Care for Veterans had organised to raise vital funds have been postponed or cancelled, so he hopes to raise as much as he can to support the charity that cares for him. 
    The support for Len has been astounding, having already raised over £5,000 for Care for Veterans, but he would really like to raise more as he approaches the finish line in the lead up to D Day. 
    You can show Len your support by donating via his JustGiving page:

  • 02 June 2020 3:38 PM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Local hospices say ‘cheers’ to volunteers

    Chestnut Tree House and St Barnabas House thank volunteers for helping them provide hospice care for local people – now and in the future.

    The local hospices rely on the support of volunteers and are taking the chance during Volunteers’ Week (1-7 June) to reflect on some of the incredible ways people get involved and make a difference.

    “There are lots of volunteers who are unable to do their usual roles for the hospices at the moment due to the current situation,” says Mark Francis, Head of Voluntary Services at Chestnut Tree House and St Barnabas House. “It’s really important to not only take this time to reflect on the amazing support our volunteers give us, but also to acknowledge that they are all hugely missed at this tough time.”

    Whether greeting people on reception, keeping the gardens fresh and trim, supporting the fundraising team, helping in charity shops, or getting out and about in the local community, volunteers make a big difference to the hospices.

    Here, we catch up with Nikki, a volunteer with the activities team at Chestnut Tree House children’s hospice to hear about her role.

    “I enjoy working with the team for many reasons, but at the heart of all of these is helping children and young people make the most of their time at Chestnut Tree House. The team provide a variety of fun-filled activities (including storytelling, cooking and arts & crafts) and the volunteers also play a supporting role at special events like the visiting farm and New Year's Eve party”says Nikki.

    “We assist with changing the theme of the Magic Carpet room, keeping the messy play area accessible and tidy, and accompanying outings outside in the countryside. One highlight was when Hawking About birds of prey came to visit the hospice. Unfortunately, the weather was wet and windy and not suitable for an outside display. However, it was decided that the show should go ahead and that it would take place indoors! I will never forget the looks on the children's faces as the wild birds of prey flew low overhead and how, having been kitted out with leather gloves, all the children and their siblings were able to have a bird rest on their hand and see the beautiful creatures up close. It was a wonderful experience for everyone.”

    Judith Cross volunteers in the beautiful gardens at St Barnabas House hospice.

    “I’m a horticulturist, so when I retired I looked for somewhere I could volunteer as I love gardening and my garden is very small,” says Judith. “I love it here at St Barnabas - the people, the place, and the gardens. Being at the hospice is nothing like I expected - it is such a friendly place, and everyone is always smiling. Volunteering is great as it is so flexible, and I have a great working relationship with the team. I just love being a gardening volunteer!”

    Mark Francis says: “There is no greater gift someone can give to another person than time. Every day we have is precious and that so many volunteers choose to make the gift of using their time helping others through our volunteering opportunities is something that we cherish at Chestnut Tree House and St Barnabas House. I hope that Nikki, Judith, and every volunteer, knows how much we value their commitment to the work we do together, helping people every day. We hope we can see all our volunteers again soon.”

  • 02 June 2020 3:32 PM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Sophie’s 4-hour HIIT challenge raises £4,215 for the hospice who cared for her mother

    Art teacher and mum of three, Sophie Garwood, has completed the ultimate HIIT fundraising challenge with a gruelling 4-hour high-intensity workout in memory of her mother, Rosie Garwood.

    Streaming live from her lounge in Shoreham-by-Sea on Saturday 16 May, Sophie was joined online by over one hundred friends, family members and onlookers from around the world, many of who took part in the fitness session and made a donation to St Barnabas House.

    The event was held on what would have been her mother’s 66th birthday weekend and an incredible £4,215 was raised for the hospice who cared for Rosie during her short battle with cancer.

    Having suffered from pains in her side, which were initially put down to IBS, Rosie was diagnosed with an aggressive form of neuroendocrine cancer in December 2019. When she and her family were told that the cancer had spread from her bowel to her liver and no further treatment was available, Sophie says it “came as a massive shock”. 

    “My lovely mother was only 65 when she died very suddenly on 15 January 2020. It literally felt like the world fell apart. She was a wonderfully talented, intelligent and kind woman with an amazing sense of humour. She was my best friend and I miss her every moment of the day.

    “Dealing with her sudden loss, and then grieving during the lockdown has meant it’s been a terribly hard time. I so miss the support of my friends and family, just meeting for a chat or having a cuddle, but I understand that this time is difficult for everyone. It’s just been so hard to grieve properly and life feels so lonely without my Mum in it.

    “My husband and I have three young children who adored their Gaga, and none of us knew what to do with ourselves at first. So, we decided to start doing exercise together and share our work outs on a YouTube channel to help keep ourselves and others sane, fit and positive whilst stuck at home.”

    It was whilst exercising that Sophie came up with the fundraising challenge which she decided to hold on the weekend of her mother’s birthday.

    “I would have loved nothing more than to be celebrating Mum’s birthday with her. But instead, I decided to do something special for her and help raise money for St Barnabas as they did so much to ensure her life was as comfortable as it could be for the short time she had left.

    “I would have done a sponsored walk, or jumped out of a plane, but with lockdown I've had to think outside the box.”

    During the four-hour HIIT challenge, Sophie was spurred on by messages of support and says it made her feel “so close to friends and family who I hadn’t seen for weeks because of lockdown.”

    It was crazy to be doing something in my lounge, but yet feel so much love.

    “I was thinking about my Mum and the money which was being raised for an amazing charity the whole time. So many people have donated. It was just a wonderful experience.”

    For the last hour of the challenge, Sophie was joined by her husband, Chris, whose support she says “I couldn’t have coped without.”

    “I found the challenge tough mentally rather than physically and when I finished the four hours I just broke down with the emotion of it all. I’m still coming to terms with the loss of my wonderful mum and there are so many different feelings to process.

    “She was so loved and had so much to live for. Her four grandchildren Lenny, Rudi, Ottilie and Kimball adored her as did her friends and family.

    “My Dad, Steve, has been so strong, as has my brother Tom and his wife Sophie. I can’t wait for us all to be able to be together in the future so we can give mum a proper send off and just be there for each other.

    “Mum will forever live on through us, and I’m just so happy to have done something positive for her.”

    It’s not too late to show you support and make a donation via Sophie’s JustGiving page.

  • 02 June 2020 3:22 PM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Apprenticeship Levy Transfer Funding Available from West Sussex County Council

    WSCC is pleased to announce round three of its levy transfer funding programme is now live.  We have a new application form for use by businesses to use and the process is now more fluid meaning there is no fixed closure date and we are aiming to turnaround decisions on transfer applications within 15 working days.  As a key partner, we very much welcome your help through highlighting the apprenticeship funding transfer offer to businesses  and community groups in West Sussex.  Full information and the application form can be found here: we look forward to working with you on this initiative."

  • 02 June 2020 3:15 PM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Government extends furlough giving businesses lifeline to October – comment from accountants Kreston Reeves

    The Government has announced changes to the furlough scheme giving businesses a lifeline to October.

    The changes will see employers from:

    • 1 July allowed to bring back furloughed staff on a part time basis;
    • 1 August required to make NICS and pension contributions;
    • 1 September required to contribute 10% of wages; and
    • 1 October required to contribute 20% of wages.

    Andrew Tate, Partner and Head of Restructuring at accountants, business and financial advisers Kreston Reeves comments:

    “Businesses will be relieved to see a generous phasing is out of the furlough scheme. We had expected the Chancellor to make much deeper changes, possibly requiring businesses to contribute up to 50% of wages to furloughed staff.

    “The requirement to pay NICS and pension contributions will for most businesses mean contributing approximately 5% of their wage bill, increasing to 14% in 1 September and 23% on 1 October.

    “This may be too much for some businesses and they will either make redundancies or collapse. But for many businesses, this window gives them the time to plan and prepare – the cliff edge of a sudden end to furlough has been avoided.

    “However, a word of caution. This level of support to businesses is not sustainable indefinitely and we expect to see further and deeper changes to furlough in the Autumn. Businesses should use this window to 1 October to prepare for those changes and ensure they are on the strongest possible financial footing.”

  • 02 June 2020 2:57 PM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Safe In Sussex is still here for you during the pandemic

    Safe in Sussex are a West Sussex Charity that helps people affected by domestic abuse. 

    Helpline: Monday to Friday, 10:0am - 3:00pm, 01903 896202

    Online chat: Available on Monday to Friday, 12:30pm - 2:30pm. Just click on the speech bubble on the right hand side of our side. 

    Outreach Support: Helps to support to both men and woman. You can self-refer via our website or by email at or call them on 0330 333 7416 

    Freedom Programme: This women's support and education group is now online. There is a variety of times, including an evening slot. Email or call 01903 896 212 for details.

    Refuge: If you need a safe place to stay for you and your children, we can help you find refuge, whether that is with us or with another service. Please call 0330 333 7416 for more information. 

  • 28 May 2020 2:08 PM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    Supporting English Tourism Week 

    All this week we’re supporting English Tourism Week. It’s a great opportunity to raise awareness of our sector and to encourage Government, MPs and stakeholders to support the recovery of English Tourism. We’re reaching out to MPs across our county, asking them to pledge their support. We’d like you to do the same and to join the campaign on social media.

    1. Download VisitEngland’s ‘I support English Tourism’ sign and tweet it alongside the hashtag #EnglishTourismWeek20. Download here.

    2. On #ThrowbackThursday (28 May) share photos and your favourite memories to celebrate the places we love.

    3. Use this as an opportunity to tell the world about your brilliant business. Use pictures and video with the hashtag #YourWestSussex and #EnglishTourismWeek20
  • 28 May 2020 2:01 PM | Lauren Martin-Grieveson (Administrator)

    New Course: Face Fit Train the Tester - Qualitative 

    Alpha Training Safety Solutions are running a new course – Train the Tester – qualitative face fit testing, a 4 hour course delivered by our fit2fit accredited trainer, Neal Daniels.  Your team can attend our site at Poling or we can arrange to come to a nominated site.                      

    Click here or go to their website for more information and for peace of mind please see their Covid-19 Risk Assessments and Policy documents.

    If you just want testing then Alpha Training Safety Solutions' sister company – Face Fit Testing UK Ltd - is also available to attend client’s sites to conduct face fit testing – we have a detailed Risk Assessment on our website.  Please contact or 07377 446462.

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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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