The Largest Circulation Regional Business Publication in the UK.
ISSUE 39. 2017
MAJOR SUSSEX EDUCATION FEATURE
PLATINUM THE BIG STORY
JUSTINE GREENING MP
Doing Business in..
WHATâ€™S IN STORE FOR SCHOOLS IN 2018? READ ALL PAST ISSUES AT WWW.PLATINUMBUSINESSMAGAZINE.COM
THE BIG STORY JUSTINE GREENING What’s in store for schools in 2018?
THE BUY TO LET BUSINESS
DOING BUSINESS IN SAN FRANCISCO
A DAY OUT WITH AUDI
JET PROPELLED BUSINESS
A snapshot of the education scene in Sussex
DMH explain how to avoid the traps
- or Oakland to be more precise
at Danny La Rue’s old house
At a Glance
6 Local & National News 14 NatWest – Promoting Opportunity 16 Carpenter Box – Property Fraud 18 Kreston Reeves – Virtual Finance Director 20 DMH Stallard – Buy-to-Let 22 Rawlison Butler – Employment Tribunal Fees 25 Smart Monkey – Boost your search rankings 27 CEO Fight Club 28 Meet the Buyers 30 Brighton Summit 32 Travel – Shake Hands in Oakland 40 EDUCATION – Justine Greening MP 46 EDUCATION – Hurstpierpoint College 50 EDUCATION – Chess in Schools & Communities 53 EDUCATION – Open Days 54 EDUCATION – Great Walstead School 57 EDUCATION – Aurora Schools 58 EDUCATION – College mergers 60 EDUCATION – Business and Education 61 EDUCATION – Should you be a Governor? 62 EDUCATION – The state of play 65 EDUCATION – Sharing Knowledge 66 EDUCATION – Children with special needs 69 Jet Propelled Business 70 NET XPRESS – Business Expo 72 i360 – West Beach Bar & Kitchen 73 Enter the 29th Sussex Business Awards 74 Brighton and Hove Business Awards 76 Sussex Business Women Excellence Awards 77 Sussex Economic Forum 2017 79 Mailing Expert – Save the Date 80 Motoring – A day out with Audi 82 Motoring – A Review of the Audi Q5 85 Motoring – A Review of the Seat Ateca 87 Chestnut Tree House – The Mud Run 88 Table Talk – And so to food 90 Table Talk – The Hydro Hotel 93 Table Talk – Summer wines 95 The Business Network – Huddledown 96 Chamber’s News 104 Anger Management – The Ticking Time Bomb 106 Institute of Directors – Instinctive Balance
Martin Riley talks about his new book
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18th October 2017 THE ARORA HOTEL, CRAWLEY
Donâ€™t just Meet the Buyers get yourself connected The Gatwick Diamond Meet the Buyers Programme brings together Buyers and Suppliers to help each other grow their businesses. For Buyers, you will have the opportunity to meet new Suppliers of the products and services you need as well as explore ways to solve your procurement issues.
For Suppliers, you will be able to access the kind of businesses you simply cannot reach elsewhere, with face to face meetings with their procurement professionals.
From June 2017, there will be a programme of free Seminars to help you understand how to engage with Public Sector and large businesses that are seeking new suppliers as well as improve your general sales processes.
t: 01293 813889
Issue 39 - 2017
A word from the Editors We are not in the slightest bit envious of the fact that over 50% of this month’s circulation, according to research, will be read on the beach! Whilst we slog here night after night for your delight and delectation, you repose on your sun lounger with not a care in the world. Unless you run leading law firm DMH Stallard that is, as they have just announced their merger with Rawlison Butler and all will now work under the DMH banner. Tremendous work by Richard Pollins and all the team and there seems to be no stopping them. Maarten lied through his teeth above as he has just left with three supercars to the Nurburgring in Germany via the Belgium Grand Prix at Spa Francorchamps, a 30,000ft sky dive with all four of his kids, a review of a Michelin star restaurant in Bruges, ditto in Paris, with a film crew in tow - and then he has ordered, for review, the second fastest accelerating car in the world to run in the Brighton Speed trials. Ian is camping in Margate. This issue also brings you our Education Feature on the state of play of education in the region and a profile of the Secretary of State for Education, Justine Greening. Julia popped off to San Francisco courtesy of Norwegian Airlines and we announce details of the Brighton Summit. Carpenter Box explain how to guard against property fraud and in CEO Fight Club, Si explains the Zombie Reality. We hear about the need for a Virtual Finance Director and Amanda advises us which wine to drink this summer. It’s been a very busy year and we all need a break (team members of Platinum please ignore this statement), so hopefully you are back refreshed and ready to continue to drive the South East economy further ahead of the rest of the country, as the economic powerhouse of the UK. More power to us.
Maarten & Ian Platinum Business Magazine September 2017
Maarten Hoffmann – Director email@example.com
Ian Trevett – Director firstname.lastname@example.org
Business Development Director
Food & Drink Editor
Sarah Walker-Bennett Amanda Harrington Event Photographer
Head of Design
LOCAL NEWS DMH STALLARD AND RAWLISON BUTLER MERGE
Top 100 law firm DMH Stallard and regional law firm Rawlison Butler have announced their merger. Rawlison Butler currently employs 65 people across two offices in Crawley and Horsham. This merger will bring the number of partners at DMH Stallard to over 70 and create an overall team strength of nearly 350. Turnover for the combined mid-market firm will exceed £30m in 2017/18, two thirds of which will be in Sussex and Surrey. Richard Pollins, Managing Partner of DMH Stallard, said: “We believe that this merger will be a game-changer for DMH Stallard and Rawlison Butler in the Gatwick Diamond, and will realise a key strategic ambition for both firms. By adding the first class expertise and experience that Rawlison Butler boasts, particularly within their real estate, private client and business law teams, the merged firm will become the stand-out law firm for quality work and clients, working with businesses and individuals across the region – as well as in London and internationally”. The merger is the largest for DMH Stallard since DMH merged with Stallard in 2005. More recently, DMH Stallard completed two mergers in 2015, first with Guildford law firm AWB Partnership and then Ross & Craig Solicitors in London. Clive Lee, Managing Partner of Rawlison Butler, said: “We believe a merger with DMH will be excellent news for Rawlison Butler and its clients, enabling us to offer a wider range of services and building on the depth of expertise already provided. We share their drive to deliver excellent client service in the mid-market and, like them, we have many of the top lawyers regionally. This merger will create a new legal powerhouse in the region with its core in the Gatwick Diamond. That is very exciting for all our people and I’m sure will be well received by the clients of both firms and the market generally.”
Be a flamingo in a flock of pigeons
The merger is expected to take effect at the beginning of September 2017. The merged firm will operate from Crawley, Horsham, Guildford, Brighton and London, and will trade under the DMH Stallard name.
US GIANT ACQUIRES 20% STAKE IN POSTURITE
Posturite’s Ian Fletcher-Price (right) with Michel van Beek, Fellowes’s President EMEA, India, China and South Korea
Fellowes, the US-headquartered global manufacturer and marketer of business machines, records storage and office accessories, has acquired a 20% stake in East Sussex-based Posturite Ltd. The deal was brokered by EMC Corporate Finance’s CEO Nik Askaroff who is also Posturite’s chairman. Posturite, based at Berwick, near Lewes, is a UK market leader in the manufacture and supply of ergonomic office equipment. It employs 200 people and has a turnover of £25m. Its customer base includes 80% of the UK’s top 250 companies who use Posturite to help them solve or avoid musculoskeletal problems among their staff. The company’s CEO, Ian Fletcher-Price, who founded the business in 1991 with a single product – an adjustable sloping writing board – knocked up in his mother’s garden shed, said: “We are working on a three-year plan to double the size of the business through organic growth, product innovation and expansion overseas. This will be greatly enhanced by our partnership with Fellowes. It’s a tremendous honour to know that a small UK start-up is now in a position to take its place on the global stage to up-scale our successful business model.” Fellowes has its headquarters in Itasca, Illinois. It employs more than 1,200 people throughout the world and has operations in 16 countries. Its products are sold in over 100 countries across the globe.
SUMMER BALL RAISES £100,000 The Hilton Brighton Metropole hosted a cheque presentation to celebrate the success of its Midsummer Ball ‘A Night at the Musicals’, which raised an incredible £100,003.77. The Ball’s sponsors, including headline sponsors Skerritts, as well as E3 Production Group, Cardens Accountants, PSAV, Reveries and CJ Thorne Civil Engineers, and performers were invited to the hotel to celebrate and award the money to the local beneficiary charities. The annual Midsummer Ball, sponsored by Skerritts, is organised by the hotel and DM Thomas Foundation for Young People. To help young people in Sussex, they selected Action Medical Research, Chailey Heritage Foundation, Chestnut Tree House and The Starr Trust to benefit. The money raised from the Midsummer Ball will be used to improve the lives, aspirations and care of disabled, sick and disadvantage young people of Sussex through the work of the five charities. Sascha Koehler, General Manager of Hilton Brighton Metropole, said: “I would like to thank everyone who attended for their continued support for this charity event, which we are very proud to host.” Simon Sheehan, Director of DM Thomas Foundation for Young People, said: “A fantastic night of jazz hands and fundraising! So many children in Sussex will benefit from the generous community of Brighton and Hove, who came together to make a difference. By working in collaboration with our charity partners we were able to deliver a bigger and better event and therefore help even more young people.” The 2018 date for the Midsummer Ball will be 23rd June 2018 and the launch will be held at the Hilton Brighton Metropole on 23rd January 2018.
One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors.
JIM MAY IS BACA’S NEW CHAIR The former chairman of Sussex Cricket, Jim May, has been announced as the new Chair of the Local Governing Committee of Brighton Aldridge Community Academy (BACA). He succeeds Peter Kyle MP, who served as Chair of the Academy since its opening in 2010. Jim May lives in Brighton and has served as Governor at BACA for six years, most recently as chair of the Business Committee. With a background in banking, Jim has many community links. He was Chairman of Shoreham Port, as well as being a local Councillor and serving on Boards in the NHS and a law firm. Jim is a Deputy Lieutenant for East Sussex and stood down as Chairman of Sussex Cricket in March after over eight years in role. Jim May said, ”I am very proud to be appointed Chair of Governors at BACA and look forward to seeing the Academy progress in the future. I am really keen that young people are given the best opportunity to succeed in life. “At this time I would like to pay tribute to Peter Kyle who was an excellent and committed Chair whilst fulfilling other public duties. BACA recorded its best set of GCSE results in 2016 and was rated “Good” in all categories by Ofsted in December under Peter’s stewardship. The school has transformed, not just in its teaching and learning but also in the entrepreneurial skills students develop, how closely it works with local employers and the unique courses, from sports to digital media and construction, which we now offer.”
LOCAL NEWS SWIFT SUPPORT FROM AMBER RUDD The latest cohort of women entrepreneurs to take part in the Swift Project celebrated their successful completion of the programme with Home Secretary Amber Rudd and Becky Shaw, CEO of ESCC in Hastings. The Swift Project, which is funded through the NatWest Skills & Opportunities fund, run by local charity, Sound Architect and supported by ESCC, helps women entrepreneurs to expand or set up new businesses giving them the confidence and ongoing support they need to make their businesses sustainable. Since 2014, the programme has helped over 100 women with digital and business skills training, peer-to-peer group work, target-setting and mentoring. Project Director Ruth Maddison said, “We have been delighted with the engagement of the women on this programme who have not only made the most of every opportunity on offer but have also supported one another on every level, and that is what Swift is all about – women supporting other women.” Amber Rudd, MP for Hastings and Rye commented: “It is great to see all of the opportunities that the latest cohort of businesswomen have available to them in order to thrive and succeed in the business community. “I look forward to hearing about the success stories over the coming months, and I would like to pay tribute to Ruth and the Swift Project for enabling this to happen.” www.swiftproject.org.uk
Left to right, Ruth Maddison, Amber Rudd MP, Rachel Lewis, Becky Shaw
NEW PARTNERS Morrisons Solicitors are delighted to announce the addition of four new Partners to the firm. Three of the new partners, Kellie Williams-Jauvel (Dispute Resolution), Graham Halsall (Property) and Greg Vincent (Corporate & Commercial) have been promoted internally, and Jonathan Turner (Residential Property) will join from Charles Russell Speechleys in September. These additions to the partnership add real strength and depth to the services Morrisons provides to businesses and individuals across the south east. Morrisons’ Managing Partner, Paul Harvey, commented “I am thrilled to announce these four new Partners. I am always excited when we recruit talented lawyers, and it’s particularly satisfying when a few years later we are able to bring them into the Partnership. Greg, Kellie and Graham all joined us from larger City firms, and their promotions are in recognition of the outstanding contribution they have made to the firm and to our clients. All of this comes at an exciting time for Morrisons. In June we were delighted to be awarded the silver accreditation against the Investors in People Standard, demonstrating our commitment to high performance through good people management. In addition we are moving our head office in Redhill into brand new premises in September. These modern offices will reflect who we are as firm and will provide both our clients and our team with a fantastic environment in which to meet and work.”
You’re either at the table or on the menu
❞ PLATINUM AWARD The Platinum Publishing Group published the programme for the Sussex Business Awards last year on behalf of Midnight Communications and low and behold, it has just been shortlisted for the Best Publication Award at the CIPR PRide Awards. We are doing the programme again for this year - oh the pressure!
MIDNIGHT IN THE RUNNING FOR FOUR PR AWARDS Thirteen is the lucky number for Midnight Communications who today announced, for the thirteenth year in a row, that one of its team has made the shortlist for Young Communicator of the Year at the Chartered Institute of Public Relations PRIDE Awards (South East and Channel Islands). Jessica Beales hopes to emulate the success of Midnight’s Tommy Handley, who took the title at last year’s ceremony. The leading PR company has been shortlisted for four awards including the Arts, Culture or Sport Campaign for its work with Arundel Castle; Best Publication for its Sussex Business Awards programme; and Best Event for its delivery of the Brighton and Hove Business Awards - “Bahba goes to Bollywood”. Managing Director, Caraline Brown, commented: “Midnight has a rich 22-year history of delivering great clients, great PR people and amazing award schemes. It is truly brilliant to have our work recognised in this way.” The CIPR PRide Awards recognise the outstanding talents and achievements of public relations practitioners across the UK’s regions and nations. They are the most prestigious and rigorously judged awards of their kind. The winners will be announced on 17th November in Bristol.
FOUR STAR HYDRO The Hydro Hotel, Eastbourne, East Sussex has been awarded 4 stars by the AA, the first time in the hotel’s 120-year history. Previously a 3-star property, the 4-star rating is a result of recent investment and improvements made to the hotel and service. The AA cited the improvements made in the past seven months with the bedrooms, restaurant, ballroom, lounges and the service of note. The property scored particularly highly with hospitality, public areas, gardens and grounds, food and cleanliness. Andrew Oxley, Head of Hotel and Hospitality Services at the AA commented, “The AA are extremely pleased to award the Hydro Hotel 4 stars as it is a reflection of the hard work that their dedicated teams put in every day and the incredible results of their refurbishment.” Jonathan Owen, General Manager said “Over the past few months we have invested over £400,000 in refurbishing all areas of the hotel and improving our food offering and customer service. We have also carefully renovated our grounds with subtle floral improvements to maximise the setting and elevated sea view, relined the outdoor swimming and added new sun loungers. It is full credit to all my colleagues to achieve 4 stars and we will be celebrating as a team to acknowledge all the hard work everyone has put in.” www.hydrohotel.com
BEDTIME FOR HORLICKS GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has announced plans to sell its Horlicks brand, which will result in the loss of 246 jobs from its Worthing site. A Unite union spokesman, Tony Devlin, said: “These are skilled jobs that are under threat and we can’t afford to lose such manufacturing posts with the economic challenges of Brexit looming. We will be fighting very hard against any proposal for compulsory redundancies.” GSK has confirmed its ongoing commitment to Worthing and will continue to employ 400 people locally.
I am thankful to all those who said no. It’s because of them that l did it myself
NATIONAL NEWS SUPER COOPER The Mini is going electric and the ‘green’ move will no doubt be a huge boost to Britain’s car industry. The firm’s German owners BMW announced that the first fully electric three-door model will be built in the UK from 2019. Under the plans, the new model’s electric motors and batteries will be built at its plants in Germany before being integrated into the car at Cowley, near Oxford. The announcement brings an end to months of uncertainty for the workers who produce a ‘Mini a minute’ and who have helped deliver record sales. BMW had warned it was considering making the electric Mini on the continent because uncertainty from Brexit was “not helpful when it comes to making long-term business decisions”. Business Secretary Greg Clark said: “This landmark decision is a vote of confidence in the determination of our Industrial Strategy to make Britain the go-to place in the world for the next generation of vehicles. The automotive industry is a great British success story and the Mini is a big part of that. UK car production hit a 10-year high last year, with 1.7 million cars made and over 800,000 people employed across the wider industry.”
Don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened
MADE IN BRITAIN Shoe maker Clarks has joined a flurry of firms bringing work back to the UK. The company is to open a new plant at its Somerset headquarters, more than decade after closing its last factory here and shipping production abroad. It is among a growing number of companies doing the same, in what it known in the industry as “reshoring”. The shift began partly because of the need to speed up order times and improve service. But last year’s Brexit vote has fuelled the trend, with a slump in the pound since then making imported goods, ingredients and parts cost a lot more. The result? UK manufacturers are having their busiest spell for 29 years, with exports booming. Rising wages in Asia mean companies has seen their costs rise, which makes UK workers more competitive. And it’s not just Clarks bringing business back to the UK - supercar maker McLaren announced plans in February for a £50million hi-tech factory in Sheffield. Cadbury is bringing back production of Dairy Milk bars to the UK after making some in Poland. Flat-pack giant IKEA is considering manufacturing more products in the UK to keep costs down in the wake of the Brexit vote; and Mobile giant EE says all customer calls are now to be handled in the UK and Ireland.
TAKING THE MICKEY Media giant Walt Disney plans to start its own online streaming services in the US for movies, shows and sports in a shift aimed at bringing productions directly to consumers. It will launch an ESPN-branded sports service early next year and a Disney streaming service in 2019. The firm also said it would end a distribution deal with Netflix. The company announcement came at the same time as it reported an almost 9% fall in quarterly profits and little change in revenues compared to the same period in 2016. Disney boss Robert Iger said the streaming services “mark the beginning of what will
Growing old is mandatory. Growing up is optional
be an entirely new growth strategy for the company”. Disney has already launched its own subscription-based video streaming service in the UK - Disney Life was introduced in 2015 and features many of the company’s films, music, books and television programmes in a single app. With the digital push, Disney is trying to insert itself into territory currently claimed by Amazon and Netflix, which have won audiences with a combination of original programmes available on-demand and a business model focused on monthly subscriptions instead of advertising. Disney said its distribution deal with Netflix for new Disney and Pixar movies would end in 2019, with discussions ongoing about the fate of Star Wars and Marvel franchises. The news sent Netflix shares down almost 3% in after hours trade.
MATCH MADE IN HEAVEN Matchesfashion.com, the British online luxury retailer, is in talks with a clutch of investment funds about a takeover that would catapult its founders into the ranks of Britain’s super-rich.
Apax Partners, KKR and Permira are among the buyout firms which are expected to table bids for Matchesfashion, which could value the company at more than £600m. A payday on that scale would hand a windfall worth well over £300m to Tom and Ruth Chapman, the husband-and-wife team who founded the luxury fashion business in 1987 and continue to hold a majority stake. Matchesfashion, which sells brands such as Alexander McQueen, Balenciaga and Chloe, has seen stellar sales growth, and this year published details of its financial performance for the first time. Sources said that the Chapmans could opt to retain a significant shareholding or make
available only a minority stake in the company. Set up 30 years ago as a boutique in Wimbledon, south-west London, Matchesfashion went online in 2007 and now sells more than 400 brands online and through three London stores. The rise of these multi-brand digital boutiques underlines the changing nature of luxury fashion retailing, as premium labels strive to reach a wider audience and offer the convenience and ease of purchase more typically associated with cheaper competitors.
NATIONAL NEWS JOHNNY BE GOOD John Lewis has topped a UK ranking of consumers’ perception of quality and reputation, followed by BBC iPlayer and Sony. The BBC also features in the top 10 of the YouGov BrandIndex list of brand “health”, with BBC One taking sixth place and BBC Two in ninth position. Marks & Spencer took fourth position, followed by Amazon in fifth place, Samsung at seven, Heinz at eight and Boots at 10 on the list, which takes into account perceptions of a brand’s quality, value, impression, satisfaction, reputation and whether consumers would recommend the brand to others. In parallel to the UK list, on the global list, Google beat sister company YouTube and Facebook to top the global ranking. Technology firms feature heavily on the global list, with Samsung coming fourth, messaging service WhatsApp in fifth place and Apple’s iPhone in sixth spot, according to the YouGov BrandIndex data. Online retail giant Amazon is seventh, and the top 10 is completed by Toyota, Adidas and Colgate.
SNAP SHUT Snapchat might be on its way out. The site has reported stalling user numbers and tumbling profits, leading to fears that the once-hyped app is gradually dying. Instagram’s stories, for instance, steal the most famous part of Snapchat – and it has had success doing so, with the feature now boasting more users than Snapchat in total. Facebook, which once tried to buy Snapchat but was rejected, has instead spent its time taking the yellow app’s most popular features. And it appears to be working. The company announced overnight that its revenues were growing by only a small amount, and sent its shares into freefall. That continued a decline that has been going on since it first offered its shares for sale to the public. Snapchat became famous – and highly-valued – on the back of a range of innovative features. Chief among them were disappearing images and stories, where photos could be temporarily shared, and both of those have been taken by Facebook companies. Instagram recently said that Stories, which lets people share videos and snapshots in a continuous 24-hour loop, has amassed 250 million daily users in the year since it launched. Snapchat, in comparison, had 173 million in the second quarter — and that’s all of Snapchat, not just its version of Stories. Instagram in its entirety, meanwhile, had more than 400 million daily users as of February, the last official count.
Politics is show- business for ugly people
LET GO AT LEGO Lego has replaced its British chief executive, the first non-Danish person to run the toy company, after just eight months, saying that at the age of 61 he was never expected to be in the position long-term. The toymaker said Bali Padda would make way for Niels Christiansen, a 51-year-old former chief executive of Danfoss, a Danish manufacturing and technology company. Lego’s chairman, Jørgen Vig Knudstorp, who was chief executive for 12 years until December, said the move was not down to Padda’s performance but because it had always been understood he would only do the job for a few years at most because of his age. Under Knudstorp, Lego enjoyed a decade of growth, tying up with movie franchises such as Star Wars, Harry Potter and Indiana Jones in deals spanning Lego sets, video games, movie franchises and smartphone applications. But while Lego now vies with the Barbie doll maker Mattel to be the world’s largest toy manufacturer, revenue growth slowed from 25% in 2015 to just 6% last year – the lowest annual increase in nine years – with sales of 37.9bn Danish krone (£4.6bn). Lego has managed to creep back from a precarious lossmaking position over a decade ago, where it was losing $1m a day as its traditional plastic building blocks failed to compete with the growing market of electronic toys. The company has since turn its financial performance around to become the world’s most profitable toymaker.
BIG BEN GONG GONE
Summer afternoon summer afternoon.... the two most beautiful words in the English language.
❞ Big Ben’s famous chimes will fall silent from now until 2021 to allow essential repair and restoration works to take place. The Great Bell has sounded on the hour for 157 years. It last fell silent in 2007 and before that, for major refurbishments between 1983 and 1985. Parliamentary authorities said stopping Big Ben - the commonly used name for the Palace of Westminster’s Elizabeth Tower - would protect workers carrying out the repairs. It will still sound for important events including New Year’s Eve and Remembrance Sunday. The clock’s keeper, Steve Jaggs, said Big Ben falling silent was a “significant milestone” in the project to restore the tower. “This essential programme of works will safeguard the clock on a long term basis, as well as protecting and preserving its home - the Elizabeth Tower,” he added.
The Entrepreneurial Spark Hub in Brighton hosted a celebration event in July to showcase the work of the winners of NatWest’s Skills & Opportunities Fund.
packed audience gathered for the presentation event organised by NatWest’s South East Regional Board, where guests heard chairman Tim Boag explain how the Skills & Opportunities Fund works. In 2017, £2 million was made available across England and Wales through NatWest’s Skills & Opportunities Fund. The regional boards, helped by a public vote, awarded grants of up to £35,000 to not-for-profit organisations and projects aimed at helping people to help themselves in the areas of financial capability and enterprise. One of the beneficiaries of an award in 2016 was the Hastings-based Education Futures Trust. Their ‘Working Without Walls’ programme impressed the judges and voters. The programme is a series of inspirational survival skills and conservation courses for young people in Hastings aged 14-21 years with low educational or economic outcomes. In an inspiring speech, Carole Dixon, CEO of Education Future Trust, told the audience about the impact of the grant and what it has meant to the the programme. She commented later, “We were delighted with our success in gaining the Skills and Opportunities funding for our Working without Walls programme. This allows us to extend our outdoor learning and conservation work to young people who struggle in education, and may be facing long term unemployment. As well as learning new practical skills, participants will develop teamwork, build self-esteem and confidence, whilst clearing and improving areas of local woodland. “Our thanks go to NatWest for allowing us this opportunity, and we look forward to welcoming them to see the progress in both the young people and the countryside.” The two big winners in the South East in 2017 were Citizens Advice Maidstone and Let’s Do Business Group (South East) Limited.
Citizens Advice Maidstone is working with
EDUCATION, EMPLOYABILITY AND ENTERPRISE Excerpt from speech by Tim Boag - Chair of NatWest’s South East Regional Board
At the start of 2015, NatWest set up regional boards throughout the country, each with representatives from the different divisions of the bank – personal/branch, business and commercial, Lombard, Coutts, plus the supporting functions including HR, marketing, communications and security – with the purpose of helping us work better together and in turn identify ways in which we can better support our customers and the communities we work in. Citizens Advice Tunbridge Wells, who both provide financial capability sessions, as well as free, confidential and impartial advice to residents in a wide range of locations and settings. They have received funding for their project, Make it Count, which will target residents and families living in isolated rural locations within the Boroughs of Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells to improve their financial resilience and capability. Let’s Do Business Group (South East) Limited, based in St Leonards-on-Sea, supports the economic development of Hastings and the wider East Sussex area by helping new and budding entrepreneurs. Its Business Builder project has received funding to provide startup workshops, mentoring support, online training and specialist advice for deprived communities. Applications for the next round of the NatWest Skills & Opportunities Fund open in September. For further information and to apply visit http://skillsandopportunitiesfund. natwest.com/
In the South East, our Regional Board’s three pillars have been on education, employability and enterprise and throughout the year we undertake a number of different initiatives under these banners. In Brighton, we’ve opened the first Entrepreneurial Spark accelerator hub in the South East where we’ve supported more than 200 aspiring entrepreneurs by providing the office space, IT infrastructure, mentoring and access to our network and the region’s business ecosystem that is often difficult and expensive for people starting their own business to secure. It has been really inspiring to see these entrepreneurs working together and the tenacity each of them have to succeed in business. I’d like to personally invite you to visit the hub to see what these budding entrepreneurs are up to. Last year, we launch our Bank on Breakfast programme through which we’re funding primary schools with catchments in some of the most disadvantaged communities including the Baird Primary Academy in Hastings and Drapers Mills Primary Academy in Margate. It has been shown that having breakfast has a direct impact on kids’ behaviour and concentration in class and that nationally 32% of schoolchildren regularly miss breakfast. Unfortunately, at both of these schools, that percentage is even higher. Our hope is that our contribution encourages better learning by giving kids a healthy breakfast and helps motivate parents to get their children to school on time. And finally, in 2015 we launched the £2.5 million Skills & Opportunities Fund. In the South East, we’ve awarded over £400,000 to 23 organisations that support disadvantaged people and communities, each in their own ways. Our aim is to create true, long term partnerships with these organisations so we encourage our staff to volunteer with the charities and social enterprises we work with.
HOW TO GUARD AGAINST PROPERTY FRAUD MHA Carpenter Box Partner, Chris Coopey, offers a closer insight into Property Fraud and how this risk can be mitigated.
roperty is big business, and it’s getting bigger. Successive property booms, the increasing wealth consolidated in the South East, and the introduction of government schemes such as ‘Right to Buy’ have fostered a market ripe in opportunities for investment, and with it, fraud. Property fraud, in itself, is not a new thing. However the obstacles for yesterday’s fraudster are different to those obstructing today’s. Worryingly, it appears that today’s fraudster might actually have it easier…
others into believing that they had ownership of a property. If the fraudster was successful, the property would then be ‘sold’ or used to raise a mortgage, and they would simply walk away with the proceeds, leaving the true owners to deal with the consequences. Today’s fraudster must adopt similar methods of deception to their predecessor, as they must still borrow the identity of a true property owner. But the fact that they don’t need to present forged title deeds, arguably, makes it easier for them.
Supporting this is the fact that instances of attempted property fraud have increased in both value and number, to such an extent that the Land Registry initiated a service aimed at identifying potential fraudulent attacks on registered properties. To date, this service has prevented frauds on 204 applications,
The conveyancing process no longer requires sight of original deeds to proceed with a property transaction. Once upon a time, a fraudster would have had to forge land certificates and title deeds in efforts to con
representing a total property value of over £92m.
Who is at risk? Although it is the buying and selling public and investors who are chiefly at risk from the fraudsters’ methods, they are not the only ones who stand to lose out. The most recent case to hit the headlines shook conveyancing solicitors, when they heard that the court ordered City firm Mishcon de Reya to reimburse £1m to its client after they were tricked into paying out to a tenant posing as the owner of a London property, even after the firm ostensibly undertook antimoney laundering and client identification procedures. With or without adequate procedures and
Solicitors must foster a ‘culture of vigilance’, ensuring that staff are adequately trained, that they remain aware of current methods of fraudsters…
checks, the property in question should have raised alarm bells with the City firm as it was of high value, it was mortgage-free, and it was tenanted, all of which are characteristics that the Land Registry considers to put a property at increased risk of fraud. Other properties at increased risk are those that are empty, have the only contact address as the property itself, or have owners living abroad.
What can be done? PROPERTY OWNERS For property owners, the Land Registry advocates a number of safety measures to guard against property fraud, the first of which is to ensure that the property is registered. Having the property registered means that, should the owner fall victim to property fraud, they would stand a good chance of being compensated for financial loss.
The conveyancing process no longer requires sight of original deeds to proceed with a property transaction
that the person selling or mortgaging the property is the true owner. PROPERTY DEVELOPERS & BUY-TO-LET Property developers and buy-to-let landlords may be at increased risk of property fraud given that properties are frequently untenanted, there may be many properties to monitor and they themselves may live abroad. In addition to following the Land Registry advice for individuals, investors may wish to consider making more thorough checks into a property’s history, and even give thought to hiring a P.I. to investigate the property and its seller, prior to making a substantial investment. LANDLORDS As solicitor firms seek to undercut their conveyancing competitors, there may be a temptation to overlook proper anti-money laundering procedures and identity checks on their new clients. However, doing so can cause financial and reputational damage, as was proven in the High Court last year in the case of A’Court & Co and House Owners Conveyancers Limited. It is therefore imperative that solicitors undergo compliant and robust anti-money laundering procedures and, crucially, obtain sufficient documentation linking the seller to the property. Some
solicitors may even wish to consider whether to engage unfamiliar clients who they have never seen face to face. Solicitors should also encourage their clients to sign up for the Land Registry service. It can be set up on behalf of a client, though this is not advised by the Land Registry as the contact email address would be linked to the solicitor’s firm rather than to the buyer. In general, solicitors must foster a ‘culture of vigilance’, ensuring that staff are adequately trained, that they remain aware of current methods of fraudsters and that they keep informed of recent property (and other) fraudulent attacks. Solicitors should be especially vigilant when dealing with properties identified by the Land Registry to be at particular risk, and also, as in the case of Mishcon de Reya, when the seller is in a rush to complete the transaction. MHA Carpenter Box can help you assess whether you are at risk from potential property fraud and can help you to put procedures in place to mitigate against these risks. To find out more, visit our website www.carpenterbox.com or give us call on 01293 227670.
The Land Registry also offers a free Property Alert service, which enables property owners to monitor up to 10 registered properties in England and Wales. An email alert is issued every time an official search or application is received against one of the monitored properties; for example, if someone tries to take out a mortgage on the property. Although such a system relies on the response of the property owner and is thus ‘reactive’ rather than pre-emptive, early detection can prevent a fraudulent attempt, which potentially could have resulted in a loss of money. This is demonstrated by the success of the service to date.
For those who feel their property might be at particular risk, the Land Registry encourages a restriction to be entered on their property. A restriction would require any solicitor or conveyancer to confirm that they are satisfied
FIVE SIGNS YOUR BUSINESS NEEDS A â€œVIRTUAL FINANCE DIRECTORâ€? by Jake Standing, Business Advisory Senior Manager at Kreston Reeves
e are nearing the eye of the storm. Whether this be through changing attitudes of employees and consumers, innovation driven by artificial intelligence, political changes at home and in the US and, of course, Brexit, the macro environment is changing.
challenging management against predetermined goals, the FD is a true deputy to the managing director.
With this uncertainty, there arises many fantastic opportunities for successful businesses to grow, thereby maximising the return on their business for its owners. It will be of no surprise that these owners will have strong financial analysis driving this success, critical to execute a mid- to long-range plan.
1. Great ambitions to grow, with no long-range plan in place. This is a common occurrence in SMEs and entrepreneurial businesses where a great idea or delivery method is present, but clear stated financial objectives are not. A plan can be developed which empowers senior managers to take ownership of objectives, with a clear view as to how they measure up against
This is where a strong finance director can be a great benefit. From acting as a sounding board for strategic ideas, to engaging and
So why would your business need an FD, virtual or otherwise? There are, of course, many reasons, but I believe there are five main drivers.
the overall goals on a regular basis. This is further underpinned by development of management accounts which actually give information that leaders can make decisions on, in a timely manner. 2. Business is booming, but cashflow remains a constant worry. In any high growth organisation, working capital will be tight. A well developed and structured reporting tool will help identify crunch points ahead of time, and a good FD will have several suitable financing options to call upon to steer through these times. This may be through drawdown on invoice discounting facilities, or identifying the best time to order foreign currency to ensure exchange fluctuations are mitigated.
3. Unknown impact of changing variables. Sensitivity analyses and a good stress test of your business is key to negotiating uncertainty. Will your imports become too expensive for your business model to work after a change in currency rates? What if inflation continues to rise, leading to an interest rate hike – how will you afford to keep debt payments on the funding obtained when your business was growing? Does your business rely on EU
workers, and how will exit from the EU impact resourcing? 4. Processes are time consuming and do not add value to customers. Lean process management is a crucial cost effective tool which can free up time for team members to work on delivering value to customers, and differentiating your business from the masses. Making processes efficient, from a clear vision of what “good” looks like, can really improve
THE VIRTUAL FD Whilst a good finance director is expensive, you may not need them in a fulltime position. The day-to-day running of the finance team should be well run by process, ensuring an efficient streamlined function. In this case, having a good business advisor, acting as a virtual FD, could be your solution. The scope is flexible, and the business retains control and allows for focussed effort on what is important. Generally, a virtual FD is always on hand to answer any questions arising or to discuss ideas, and attends monthly or quarterly board meetings to discuss results and direction of the business. Outsourcing this position means that continuity of service is maintained, and the virtual FD can dip into a wide-ranging talent pool within the organisation. Although SMEs make up a large proportion of all businesses, many do not have this key position of strategic advisory servicing in place. Perhaps this is down to a seemingly unneeded cost or a lack of quality resource out there to trust. However, in the changing world today, there must be no misunderstanding as to how much value the virtual FD can bring to a business.
productivity whilst maintaining the control required to detect and prevent errors occurring. 5. The business has excellent product/ process ideas, but little idea of the costing and profitability of the venture. It is useful to have someone with a prudent approach to costing and profitability analysis. This not only helps to play devil’s advocate, but to ensure that the idea will ultimately achieve its desired financial and operational objectives. Business Case Analyses (BCAs) are powerful tools to ensure that the idea has every chance of succeeding, and can also be used when quoting for new opportunities. Jake Standing specialises in providing virtual FD services. For more information email jake. email@example.com. Visit www.krestonreeves.com for further information.
business. tax. wealth.
THE BUSINESS OF BUY-TO-LET Faye Didcote, Senior Associate at DMH Stallard, explains how buyto-let landlords can avoid falling foul of the law when it comes to their properties.
esidential property is a popular investment for businesses and individuals alike. Brexit and hikes in stamp duty for buy-to-let landlords reportedly contributed to a reduction in buy-to-let borrowing in the last year. But according to a June 2017 study by property experts at Knight Frank, the private rented sector (PRS) in England will continue to grow, with nearly one in four households expected to be renting in the private sector by 2021. There has in recent years been a focus on the role of professional institutional landlords in the PRS, including the growth of “build to
The industry is overwhelmingly made up of small-scale landlords and individual investors. Many will self-manage and we often see PRS landlords falling into the same traps when it comes to managing their lettings.
rent” developments. However, the industry is overwhelmingly made up of small-scale landlords and individual investors. Many will self-manage and we often see PRS landlords falling into the same traps when it comes to managing their lettings. These can be costly to resolve and may even restrict or delay landlords being able to end a tenancy. Here we look at three common pitfalls for PRS landlords, how to avoid them and how to get it right. This piece looks at the law as it applies to assured shorthold tenancies (ASTs), although parts may also apply to other types of residential tenancies.
Legal Tenancy Deposits It has been a legal requirement since 6th April 2007 that landlords protect deposits paid by tenants with a government approved scheme. This involves either paying over the deposit to the scheme provider or insuring it with the provider. Landlords are required, within 30 days of receipt of the deposit (or 14 days for ASTs granted prior to 6th April 2012), to protect the deposit and provide the tenant (and any person who paid the deposit on their behalf) with certain prescribed information about the deposit. The prescribed information is set out in legislation and will often accompany the tenancy agreement itself. Whilst most PRS landlords are aware of their obligation to protect the deposit, providing the prescribed information can cause problems. What many overlook is that, depending on the deposit protection scheme used, it may also be necessary for the landlord to give the tenant a leaflet (supplied by the scheme provider) setting out the operation of the scheme, or the information contained within that leaflet, in addition to the statutory prescribed information.
Landlords must ensure that they are adhering to the letter of the law or they may face hefty penalties or difficulties down the line when looking to reclaim their property.
A landlord who fails to protect the deposit in time and/or provide the prescribed information may be barred from serving a notice under Section 21 of the Housing Act 1988 to recover possession of the property (unless the deposit is returned to the tenant). They may also be liable for financial penalties of up to three times the value of the deposit. Section 21 is a non-fault based procedure to enable landlords to recover possession without having to prove a ground for possession such as rent arrears or nuisance. It is therefore imperative that landlords check with their scheme providers what the individual requirements of the scheme are and what additional documentation or information needs to be given to their tenants under the scheme. This will help avoid any delays in seeking possession. A landlord who serves the prescribed information late will not be
prohibited from serving a Section 21 notice, but may still face financial penalties.
Deregulation Act 2015 The Deregulation Act 2015 imposed further obligations on landlords to provide tenants with additional information for ASTs granted on or after 1st October 2015, namely a gas safety certificate and energy performance certificate for the property (where applicable) and the government “How to Rent” checklist. Again, a landlord will be unable to serve a Section 21 notice until this requirement has been complied with. We recommend PRS landlords provide these documents at tenancy sign-up to avoid complications or delays at the end of the tenancy. This requirement will apply to all ASTs from 1st October 2018.
Section 48 Notice Landlords are obliged under Section 48 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1987 to provide their tenants with an address in England and Wales where their tenants can serve notices on them, including notices in proceedings. Any rent or service charges otherwise due by the tenant will not be payable unless the landlord has complied with this obligation. This causes particular problems where a landlord intends to end the tenancy and take possession of the premises due to rent arrears, because the relevant grounds for possession in Schedule 2 to the Housing Act 1988 require rent to be lawfully due from the tenant. The notice required under Section 48 can be included in
the tenancy agreement itself, but if a separate notice is served this should be properly recorded to avoid any later dispute.
Summary Despite the significant role played by the PRS in providing housing, the PRS continues to be heavily regulated, often at the expense of small private landlords. Such regulation was compounded in February 2016 when new duties were imposed on PRS landlords to carry out immigration checks on new tenants and occupiers of their properties, with criminal offences and fines applicable from 1st December 2016 for those who fail to do so and let their properties to persons disqualified from renting in England due to their immigration status. Landlords must ensure that they are adhering to the letter of the law or they may face hefty penalties or difficulties down the line when looking to reclaim their property. This is not an exhaustive list of the pitfalls for PRS landlords and the problems they may face when dealing with their lettings, and PRS landlords who need advice on their legal obligations should always speak to a specialist solicitor. DMH Stallard have a dedicated team dealing with landlord and tenant law, who give advice to PRS landlords on a wide range of contentious and non-contentious issues, including tenancy agreements, possession claims and statutory duties. For more information please contact Faye.Didcote@dmhstallard.com.
EMPLOYMENT TRIBUNAL FEES ARE UNLAWFUL The Supreme Court has ruled that the Employment Tribunal fee system, introduced in 2013, is unlawful and that with immediate effect individuals will no longer have to pay issue or hearing fees to bring a claim in the tribunals. Tony Hyams-Parish, Partner and Head of Employment at RB, explains the impact that this ruling will have on employers.
he Employment Tribunals and the Employment Appeal Tribunals Fees Order 2013, which was introduced by the coalition government, has been ruled as being unlawful. The reasoning behind the introduction of fees was to reduce the number of malicious and weak cases being brought by individuals against employers. The introduction of fees led to a 70% reduction in claims being brought. The Supreme Court held that the fees were “inconsistent with access to justice”. It
In addition to the fees no longer being payable, the Government has confirmed that they will reimburse all fees paid from the introduction of the order.
also concluded that the fees were indirectly discriminatory as a higher proportion of women would bring discrimination cases, which in turn attracted a higher fee. In reaching its decision, the Court commented on the contrast between the level of fees in a tribunal and the small claims court, where it is substantially cheaper to bring a small value claim. It also concluded that the role of an elected Parliament is to put laws in place to give certain rights, therefore a system that prevents access to individuals to enforce
The largest concern for most employers will be the potential impact on new claims going forward. If the introduction of fees resulted in a 70% drop in claims, it is more than likely that employers will start to receive more claims now that the fees are no longer in place.
those rights is unlawful. The same issues applies to rights and claims deriving from EU law. The Court stated that whether or not a person could afford the Employment Tribunal fees was not the only consideration, the system also blocked access for those where it did not make economic sense to pursue a valid claim. For example, a person pursuing a claim for unpaid wages of £500 would have to pay a £390 fee. Without any guarantee of success, or of getting the fee reimbursed, or of getting awarded the full value of their claim, or of the employer actually paying the full sum awarded, few individuals would risk paying the fee. Therefore the fee system effectively prevented access to justice. In addition to the fees no longer being payable, the Government has confirmed that they will reimburse all fees paid from the introduction of the order. While this addresses the issue in the short term, there will now be question marks over a number of other areas, in particular: • What happens to the large number of individuals who have been denied access to justice over the past four years? • Will employers who paid compensation that included a sum in respect of the fees receive reimbursement? • If an individual paid the fees but their claim was then settled, with part of the settlement covering the fees paid, when the individual is reimbursed will the employer be able to claim anything back?
What does this mean for employers? Although it is very early days and the legal consequences of the Supreme Court’s judgment will take some time to unravel, the existing law is that the three month time limit for bringing an Employment Tribunal claim can be extended if it was not reasonably practicable for the individual to present the claim in time. Therefore if someone can establish that the fees were the factor that meant they did not progress their claim, the logical conclusion would be that it was not reasonably practicable for that person
to comply with the three month time limit. Individuals in that category will need to act quickly now that the fees are no longer in place, however it is possible that a flood of claims from the past four years could arrive.
be the potential impact on new claims going forward. If the introduction of fees resulted in a 70% drop in claims, it is more than likely that employers will start to receive more claims now that the fees are no longer in place.
It has not yet been announced how the reimbursement of fees will logistically work, however it is likely that it will be operated by the Government and a review of those fees paid by claimants being automatically reimbursed, and those paid by employers under judgments being reimbursed following a manual trawl through judgments where compensation was awarded.
If you would like to understand more about the implications of this case or would like to discuss how RB can help to protect your business from claims, please contact Tony Hyams-Parish by emailing Tony at ahyamsparsih@rawlisonbutler. com or by calling him on 01293 558544 or speaking to your usual contact in our Employment Team. In addition, our fixed cost Vantage service helps businesses to prevent claims from arising and gives protection in the event that they do. Please contact us if you would like further details of a service tailored to your needs.
The position with regard to fees paid as part of a settlement may be more difficult to define as this was a voluntary payment and agreement between the parties and it is not anticipated that employers would receive anything back from the Government in this case. However employers in this category should review the wording of their settlement agreements in case the wording allows scope to reclaim anything from the individual if they receive a reimbursement. The largest concern for most employers will
This document is provided for information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. Professional legal advice should be obtained before taking or refraining from taking any action as a result of the contents of this document.
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BOOST YOUR GOOGLE SEARCH RANKINGS It’s the holy grail of the digital world but generating and keeping a top spot on the search engines is no mean feat. Here, Beth Nash, from digital marketing agency Smart Monkey gives her top tips to boost your search rankings BOOST YOUR SEARCH ENGINE RANKINGS: 1. Planning Good search engine optimisation must be built into the website from the word go, so build SEO into the planning stage of your website build or redevelopment. For the majority of websites, we recommend using WordPress. 2. Keyword Selection Clever keyword research will ensure that you are building in the words people are searching for rather than what you ‘think’ they are searching for. There are several tools available such as Google’s Keyword Planner (https://adwords.google.com/ KeywordPlanner) or Wordtracker (https:// app.wordtracker.com/) that show you the popularity of particular search terms as well as the number of other pages on the web using the same words. The ‘key’ is to use words that are popular but less featured on competitor websites. 3. Keyword Use Once you have selected one or two keywords for each page, it is then important to build these into the structure of the site. Each page should feature the specific keyword in the page title, meta tag, page description, H1 heading, etc. Keywords should also be used within the link url’s (for example, www.yourwebsite. co.uk/keyword). 4. Content Content is one of the most important areas in SEO – Google wants to provide their customers with relevant, on-topic, useful web results and so they favour information-rich websites that provide value. Create your content for the visitor so that it reads well – don’t keyword stuff for the search engines. 5. Internal Links To help your web visitors (and Google)
easily find their way around your website, incorporate internal links around your website. 6. External Links The more quality and relevant incoming links from other websites with a high Domain Authority (https://moz.com/ learn/seo/domain-authority) you have coming into your site, the more important the search engines will view your site, so a link building strategy is vital. The more relevant the better (why would you want an incoming link to your shoe retail website from a construction company’s website? Google and the other search engines will find that a little fishy.) Don’t go down the route of cheap link builders – Google see this as cheating and will penalise you. 7. Analysis & Reporting Finally, SEO is an ongoing job. The initial work is to generate a top ranking on the main search engines, but more importantly, it is keeping that position once you are there.
successful search engine optimisation, it can take a few months for the search engines to register any changes. The use of paid for search marketing (Pay Per Click – PPC) will mean you can be visible on the search engines until your natural search engine optimisation kicks in, as well as providing a number of other benefits. More on that next month!
www.smartmonkey.co.uk email@example.com @Bethanie_Nash
BIO: Beth is a Chartered Marketer and ‘Head Honcho & Chief of Client Happiness’ at digital marketing agency, Smart Monkey. Since 2006, Smart Monkey has been helping small and medium sized businesses in Sussex, Surrey and Kent generate revenue through effective and measurable digital marketing campaigns.
Once you have followed the tips to
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CEO Fight Club
CEO WAKING UP TO YOUR ZOMBIE BUSINESS By Si Conroy, owner of Scarlet Monday
ast month I was a bit naughty. I hid a whole world of pain under a short point on strategy when I asked: “Do you understand how tough your chosen industry is to make money in?” If you read it, you may have chosen to consider the end of my statement: “Then you can decide if you pack up and go home or carry on playing.” A lighthearted joke? It wasn’t. As an example, Jack Welch, legendary CEO of General Electric over one if its greatest periods of success, started his tenure by selling off more than 200 businesses worth more than $11 billion and using that money to make more than 370 acquisitions in different industries. Why? Because the original industries were too difficult to make money in. It got me thinking about how many massive realities we tend to ignore in business because they don’t fit with our expectations or the stories we’re telling ourselves as leaders and entrepreneurs. The whole article last month is a good example. It defined good strategy as being about serving an unmet need. Doing something unique, or uniquely well. Most of you who read it will have nodded sagely, then totally dismissed the fact that your business is not serving an unmet need uniquely or uniquely well. Therefore it doesn’t really have a good strategy. Gulp. Profit is another good example. Pretty much every entrepreneur I meet is apparently just about making profit. Until I ask them to deduct the market salary they’d receive if they went back to employment.
And then to deduct the real salaries of all the extra roles they’re juggling during ‘the early years’. Don’t forget the other directors/ consultants not on full salary. Any costs going through the business that shouldn’t be? When they’ve finished adding up the true position they can just about see all that red through their tears.
If you can’t raise the money required to grow it’s normally because everyone else has spotted what you’re choosing to ignore. You have a zombie business with no strategy.
You as leader. Now this is a bit of an existential one. Unfortunately, because you’re the chief strategy officer, if you can’t do this job well then you’re probably the reason for your businesses failure to succeed or grow. This leads to the self-perpetuating ignorance of the other features that indicate your business is dying. If you can’t execute a good strategy, it’s only a matter of time before you’ll have killed your business.
to grow it’s normally because everyone else has spotted what you’re choosing to ignore. You have a zombie business with no strategy. Oh, and you probably don’t have private assets they could use as an excuse to lend you money. So where’s the zombie at? Unfortunately it may well be your whole business if any of the points above have resonated. It looks like a good business until you get a bit closer and notice it shuffling inexorably forward, dead-eyed but looking for more cash to consume. Not a good industry and not a strong strategy funded by short term measures like reduced salaries or expensive lending because nobody else believes it’s a real business. They see the zombie, but are too afraid to tell you. So, what’s the answer? You may have started to get the hint when you realised I’ve written for two months on the same point. STRATEGY. You have to have a good strategy, and be a good enough leader to recognize that a good strategy is constantly evolving. You have to know how to execute it. Everything else is essentially playing at businesses rather than running a good business.
Business finance providers are like zombie radars. If you can’t raise the money required
Si Conroy specialises in helping business owners set and achieve stretching goals: sales, profit & capital/ dividend value realisation. Trained at PwC and owner of www.ScarletMonday.com and www.ConstantMentor.com, Si practices what he preaches across a number of businesses in which he has invested. · firstname.lastname@example.org · @siconroy
MEET THE BUYERS 18th October 2017
he Gatwick Diamond Meet the Buyers event brings together Buyers and Suppliers to help each other grow their businesses.
One of the most difficult aspects for any business is getting in front of the decision maker. It is a battle to find out who you need to talk to, and once you do, you have to navigate around the dogged gatekeepers. This is an event that brings the right people together and makes the process straightforward and easy. For Buyers, you will have the opportunity to meet new Suppliers of the products and services you need as well as explore ways to solve your procurement issues. For Suppliers, you will be able to access the kind of businesses you simply cannot reach elsewhere, with face to face meetings with their procurement professionals. From June 2017, there will be a programme of free Seminars to help you understand how to engage with Public Sector and large businesses that are seeking new suppliers as well as improve your general sales processes. On the day you will be able to spend time with the types of businesses you just don’t see out and about. Date: 18th October 2017 Venue: the Arora Hotel, Crawley For more, please call 01293 440088 or email email@example.com
MEET A BUYER
As this is our Education Issue, we are putting the spotlight on The Chichester College Group, which is the new college group formed after the merger of Chichester College and Central Sussex College (now Crawley College). The Chichester College Group is the largest provider of further education in Sussex. It covers four sites: Crawley College, Chichester College, Brinsbury and Horsham Training Centre Julie Kapsalis, Managing Director (Commercial) at Chichester College Group, explains why they decided to be one of the Buyers and what the college group is looking for from suppliers. “Through our Colleges we educate and train around 25,000 full and part time students every year and provide teaching excellence to meet the future needs of the region’s employers. “As a major business and employer in the region we procure a huge number of services. We are keen to support and grow local businesses both through our supply chain and through our training and education services. We are also committed to playing a leading role in the Gatwick Diamond through skills and business development. “Our business needs are diverse and constantly evolving. We are looking to form partnerships with businesses to support the local economy. Within the Chichester College Group we also run a number of commercial businesses including childcare provision, an examination board, conferencing and international education. This means that we can procure everything from specialist teaching equipment through to professional services.”
MAKE THE MOST OF MEET THE BUYERS Meet the Buyers is an excellent (and very rare) opportunity to get in front of buyers who may potentially become key clients. Preparation for the day is key. To ensure you make the most of the day, there has been a series of informative and practical seminars throughout the summer, and there are more lined up before the event. Make sure you register to all that are relevant to your company. 15th September 2017
3rd October 2017
9.30am - 12.30pm
Understanding Airport Based Business Procurement
Understanding Procurement: Public Sector & Government
Venue: Welland Medical, Hydehurst Lane, Crawley, West Sussex RH10 9AS
Venue: South Lodge Hotel, Brighton Road, Lower Beeding, Horsham RH13 6PS
Presenters: Lucy Moody, The Home Office Tim Sheppard, SmartSupport At this seminar, Lucy will give you an overview of Home Office business, how they buy goods and services and where to look for upcoming opportunities and high level information on the Home Office pipeline. Tim will give you an understanding of how to work with Local Authorities across the region.
Presenters: David Gill - Managing Director, Marco Airport Facilities Group Charlie Cooper - Senior Project Manager, Marco Airport Facilities Group Paul Williams - Head of Business Development, OmniServ Ltd Attendees of this seminar will discover • Details around local supply chain • What is required from an Airport supplier • What it takes to be a supplier at Gatwick • Top Tips for new suppliers
21st September 2017 9.30am-12.30pm
Inspiring & Delivering Innovation Venue: Crowne Plaza Felbridge Hotel, London Road, East Grinstead RH19 2BH
25th Oct 2017 9.30am-12.30pm
Digital & Social Media Marketing Venue: Ardingly College, College Road, Haywards Heath, West Sussex RH17 6SQ Presenter: Matt Turner, CEO of Creative Pod A digital marketing masterclass, navigating you through the good, the bad and the ugly of digital marketing. During this workshop we will cover what really matters when it comes down to digital marketing. Your return on investment, how best to achieve it and how to measure it. This seminar will also cover Social Media, SEO, Google PPC, Website analytics, Email Marketing and Reporting
Presenters: Mike Herd, Executive Director, Sussex Innovation Centre Pete Lane, Innovation Support Manager, Sussex Innovation Centre
To book on any of these seminars, follow the link at gatwickdiamondmeetthebuyers.com
ARE YOU READY TO EMBRACE THE UNKNOWN?
lllustration by Chum Designs
righton Summit, organised by Brighton & Hove Chamber of Commerce, brings together the city’s diverse business community for a day of ideas, action and seriously good networking.
stops, speaker sessions or workshops. We’ll ease you out of your comfort zone, broaden your horizon and help you learn new things.
This year the theme is “Embracing the Unknown”, reflecting the uncertainty affecting business following the upheaval of the last 12 months.
Three diverse guest speakers will challenge your perspective, explain how they’ve done things differently, and inspire you to discover unknown qualities within.
We’ve all probably thought “WTF?” but it’s also time for optimism – do things differently, seek new opportunities and most definitely embrace the unknown.
Social media company Liberty842 co-founder Daisy Creswell will cut through the hype to show the true value of social media to business, including how to meaningfully connect, disrupt and engage, using real-world examples.
What’s on offer? Brighton Summit has extraordinary speakers, practical workshops, things you never thought you’d see at a business conference. You can meet contacts old and new in networking breaks, refreshment pit
International economist Guy Standing will give his perspective on our journey into the unknown. Having studied global pilot schemes where the selfemployed get a basic income, he’ll consider how it could happen here, and the impact on entrepreneurialism. Former City lawyer Ciro Romano is owner of Neapolitan Music and founder, festival director and major shareholder in the Love Supreme Jazz Festival, the largest outdoor jazz festival in the UK, considered one of our
Whether sitting, listening and thinking, or rolling up your sleeves and taking part, the Summit offers expert sessions full of practical take-aways to use as soon as you get back to your workplace.
• From a progressive product to a progressive business model – Mooncup’s adventure in employee ownership. - Founding team member Eileen Greene explores what employer ownership means, why Mooncup chose it, and the stages and challenges it took to get there. Learn about the benefits, what’s different now and what it’s like to work there, plus advice for those considering the model and how to find out more.
In the workshop Future of Content, learn the value of authenticity, go back to the roots of marketing, and the power of storytelling. Discover how to have conversations with your audiences that matter. With so much ineffective content around, see what’s important and what isn’t.
• Working in a crisis – collaboration and leadership - Paul Hutchings tells of providing refugee aid in Greece and what he learnt in this most challenging of situations. Having worked in the Calais refugee camp, he realised that while aid was delivered effectively, it was often chaotic
top music festivals. From legal eagle to festival impresario, Ciro will share his challenges, successes and likely a few failures, to show how he embraced his unknown.
Workshops – get interactive
Build Your Future Brick by Brick will help prepare you for more change. We live in times where we need to be aware of new market trends and be agile in the way we work. Warning: this session includes Lego!
And there’s more … Hear how local businesses have embraced their unknowns and lived to tell the tale.
Photo by Simon Callaghan Photography
and unpopular with the locals. Learn about how his team were determined to do things differently, aiming to place refugees’ dignity at the heart of activities.
Unknown Hour Experience something different, unusual and unexpected – or maybe all three. Can you let go, trust, and take a chance? Unknown sessions will be allocated randomly on the day, though you can swap with others if you want. Curious? Clues are on the Summit website. You’ll leave feeling ready to seize the moment and make the most of the challenges that lie ahead. Go on – embrace your unknown. You’ll never know what you could have done until you do it!
HOW TO BOOK This event is open to anyone in (or starting up) a business of any type, size or sector, commercial or not-for-profit, in Brighton & Hove. Brighton Summit is on Friday 13th October at The Clarendon Centre, near Brighton Station. There are parking and bus services nearby. To get more information and book your ticket please visit www.brightonsummit.com
Travel - Oakland
Shake hands in...
San Francisco’s lesser-known neighbour makes it on the business radar, but only creative, community-minded companies need apply. Julia Trevett reports
cross the bay from San Francisco sits Oakland. Once a place of poverty and gang violence, Oakland has risen from the depths of despair to give the vibrant and cultural metropolis of San Francisco a real run for its money. While San Francisco’s transformation from hippy haven to the home of the Tech Giants has come at a price, Oakland is having a surprisingly different evolution. Oakland is one of America’s rising stars as a city with a heart for business. The fact that Uber have shelved plans to move 3,000 employees to their acquired office space in the Old Sears Building (instead they will move in a few hundred and rent the remaining office space) is no bad thing. While the local economy might have benefitted initially from the move, the long-term effect could have encouraged a spike in rents.
Sky-rocketing rents in San Francisco are a symbol of the city’s success, but have punished the local population. Such a hike in rents in Oakland would undoubtedly have a negative impact on the vibrant culture that is currently developing. For the local business community, the Uber retreat could be more of a blessing than a curse. It’s been the organic business growth that has made Oakland such an attractive place with local people growing innovative and creative businesses. There’s a passion about grass roots here, and a vibe that has many parallels with Brighton. Just as people are shying away from the exorbitant rents and property prices in London and settling in Brighton, the exodus is mirrored in Oakland in preference of San Francisco. San Francisco is packed full of people with
great business ideas, but the rents in the city are stifling. Ordinary city folk have reached their limits with the sight of billionaires stepping over homeless people. The inequality in San Francisco is huge. Oakland isn’t without its problems, but it does have some innovative community projects in place. That’s not to say San Francisco doesn’t have some great projects of its own, but to the business visitor they’re largely hidden from view. Oakland has a contagious sense of optimism and you’ll hear about community the minute you hit the city streets. So far, Oakland is proving a viable alternative for those nostalgically seeking the old vibe of San Francisco, but looking for more reasonable rents. If Oakland can hang on to its sense of social responsibility, there’s every chance it will continue to attract a socially conscious and creative business crowd.
Travel - Oakland The choices for eating in Oakland are huge. For sophisticated dining try Yoshi’s Japanese Restaurant (conveniently located next to Yoshi’s Jazz Club), or Lake Chalet, an amazing fish restaurant overlooking the bay. On Jack London Square offering views of the bay, Bocanova is the number one place for great food and a buzzy vibe. Here interesting food combinations are born from a chef with classic French training and a passion for food spanning North, South and Central America – the Pan American menu is as creative as Oakland’s business community. Don’t leave Oakland without heading to the Gastropig for one of their provocatively named Baconslut breakfast sandwiches. Featuring applewood smoked bacon with an over easy egg, cheddar, and Aleppo chilli aioli, these awesome baps offer the ultimate hangover cure.
Business with community at its heart
travellers are invited to try out a session of hands-on creativity
In Oakland, you’ll find businesses proud of their roots, committed to supporting their community, yet conducting business with a real sense of flair. It’s a refreshing change from the type of business conducted by the Tech giants across the bay.
need to be close to one another, feeding off each other’s dynamism. Oakland has the diversity and exciting creative vibe that an up and coming business community needs.
Oakland is surpassing itself with an extraordinary sense of cohesion and community. The whole set up should be a contradiction, but Oakland’s real sense of business purpose is intertwined with a strange contemporary hippy vibe.
Along with Oakland’s organic and exciting business growth, the city is also being lauded for its food. The North Shattuck area has been popularly known as the “Gourmet Ghetto” since the 1970s because of its concentration of innovative restaurateurs. But it doesn’t stop there. In recent times, some really exciting chefs are ditching San Francisco and hitting the Oakland scene.
Walk into any small business in Oakland and you’ll hear tales of local people doing great things and supporting each other. The sense of pride and camaraderie here is impressive and it’s infectious. Community spirit is making the whole area a very attractive proposition for businesses seeking a place for supportive, organic growth.
The Gourmet Ghetto
As well as fine wines from the nearby California vineyards, craft breweries in the area are plentiful. Just as with everything else in Oakland, craft brewers here are making flavour combinations that stand out from the crowd. The Oakland Ale Trail is a must for beer connoisseurs. Brewing is part of the fabric of Oakland. Home brewing is big here and as much a part of every day life for local residents as home cooking.
Oakland insights If you really want to experience the hipster vibe so reminiscent of San Francisco, you must visit Temescal, a locality on the northern outskirts of Oakland. It’s hard to imagine, but there’s an even more relaxed and open vibe here than downtown. Temescal Alley houses a collection of shops and workshops filled with creative people Oakland Skyline
T-shirt and accessories company, Oaklandish, are a great example of business success with a conscience. Impressively, community motivates everything they do. They give back to the city of Oakland by way of grants and donations, as well as offering pro bono design and marketing to small local businesses. It’s a business model that is at the heart of many of Oakland’s home-grown businesses. Creative collaboration comes easily in Oakland. An example is the industrial arts school, The Crucible, an impressive community project which comes with the nostalgic whiff of school metalwork workshops. Business
Travel - Oakland making and selling beautiful wares. From apothecaries, horticultural shops, and innovative jewellers, to hip and cool independent clothing stores, there’s a real buzz about the place.
A PEEK ACROSS THE BAY
One store that typifies the spirit is the cool men’s clothing store, Standard and Strange, who peddle high quality clothing with a price tag to match under the banner, ‘own fewer, better things.’ The argument for splashing out is enticing. Temescal is the best place to buy gifts you plan to take home. Don’t miss out on the best Tacos in town while you’re here. Cholita Linda’s is low-key, buzzy and deliciously satisfying. At the other end of the spectrum, nestled in Oakland’s hills, is the iconic Claremont Club & Spa hotel. This is one of America’s finest hotels offering breathtaking views of the bay, handsome guest rooms, elegant dining and a high-end spa. Approach the hotel by road and the imposing, snow-white structure pops into view, to literally take your breath away. The exquisite breakfast menu here is not to be missed. In happier times, and before the break-up, Brad and Angelina stayed here while filming nearby. It’s the place in Oakland to go if you want to impress. Claremont Club & Spa
While Oakland has everything you need from art to museums, a plethora of restaurants and cool bars, to hip entertainment venues, travelling across the bay to San Francisco is easy and well worth the trip. If you do nothing else in San Francisco, take a spin on the San Francisco Love Tour. You not only get a whistle-stop tour of the city, there’s an eclectic musical accompaniment, and plenty of amusing facts from your driver and tour guide. Your only uncomfortable moment might be cruising through San Francisco’s China Town with Carl Douglas’s track ‘Everybody was Kung-Fu fighting’ blaring from the speakers. It’s not perhaps the most sensitive of musical choices. A trip to San Francisco wouldn’t be complete without a tram ride, visiting the seals at the pier, and, if you have the time, a boat trip to Alcatraz, the historic prison.
GETTING THERE Oakland International Airport is the second largest airport in the San Francisco Bay Area. Travel in and around Oakland couldn’t be easier with its Amtrak stations offering numerous train services to cities such as Sacramento, Reno and Bakersfield, as well as daily services to Seattle, Los Angeles and Chicago. Regionally, The BART metro offers a connection to and from the East Bay and San Francisco, as does the San Francisco Bay Ferry. Oakland has recently launched a new premium business travel airport lounge, called the Escape Lounge. It is not the biggest but is perfectly formed and is brimming with exceptionally good, locally sourced food and drinks, including some impressive locally sourced gins. Thoughtfully designed, the modern interior cleverly blends the overhead industrial pipes into its décor, and manages to pull off a cool, but welcoming vibe. The only negative is that the lounge doesn’t have its own toilets, but the airport facilities are very close by. However, this a well-managed, slick operation with customer experience at its heart. Regular business travellers stop by on both legs of their journeys; the food and service is that good. The issue of getting to Oakland has been solved by the recent introduction of direct transatlantic flights from Europe with Norwegian. Getting a low-cost long-haul flight from Europe to the U.S’s West Coast has never been easier or cheaper, and it’s Oakland that is cashing in. It’s great news for European businesses already trading in the US, and for those looking to make the move. Escape Lounge Norwegian are the first airline to offer low-cost direct flights to Oakland from the UK. It was a very business-savvy move by Norwegian, with Oakland shaping up nicely as a great place to do business across the pond. It’s a comfortable flight which is free from burning nasal passages, a customary symptom of most long haul flights, as Norwegian’s new 787 Dreamliners fly at 1,800m rather than the standard 2,400m. There’s ample leg room, unexpectedly decent airplane food, obligatory free booze, and a service you’d be hard-pushed to match on other big brand airlines (water appears just before your brain makes the connection that your mouth is running a little dry). But, most impressive of all is the cost. www.norwegian.com
Travel - Oakland
TOP PLACES FOR A MEETING/EVENT Rose Dykins lists some of the Golden City’s most interesting places for corporate events
With its mission to ignite curiosity and inspire creativity, this excellent science museum would be great for teambuilding. Its event spaces include a waterfront terrace and the hands-on exhibition galleries themselves. exploratorium.edu
CONSERVATORY OF FLOWERS
Set amid the glorious surrounds of Golden Gate Park, the romantic glass-paned pavilion has five event spaces filled with tropical plant life. conservatoryofflowers.org
For a sample of North California’s vinification culture, this co-op of three wineries is within easy reach of Downtown on Treasure Island, accessed via the Golden Gate Bridge. Group tastings can be arranged, and there is event space for up to 1,000 delegates. winemakerstudios.com
COMPUTER HISTORY MUSEUM An interactive museum with exhibits that chart the evolution of computers – including a recreation of a bizarre-looking 1960s computer system – this attraction ties in nicely with a tech-themed event. Group reservations are available for a minimum of ten people. computerhistory.org
Offering a dreamy view of the Golden Gate bridge, the lawns of this luxury resort make for summer outdoor receptions. It also has a cosy indoor meeting and dining spaces with fireplaces and smart walnut wood tables. cavallopoint.com
More destinations than any other UK airport
Source: OAG schedules 2016
Travel - Oakland
WHERE TO STAY Tips from Rose Dykins and Julia Trevett
SAN FRANCISCO PROPER HOTEL
After a slightly stagnant period, San Francisco’s hotel scene is starting to liven up, with some top-totail renovations and a number of new boutiques openings. Perhaps the most significant is the Proper Hotel, housed in a distinctive flatiron building in the Mid-Market neighbourhood. Set to open in August, the property will has four restaurants and bars – including a rooftop venue – and 131 rooms with mixed-print wallpaper and vintage furnishings. RD properhotel.com
FAIRMONT SAN FRANCISCO
Poised proudly atop Nob Hill, with panoramic views of the city and the Bay Area, this grand luxury provides a more traditional option amid San Fran’s typically trendy accommodation. Its 592 rooms and suites are classically elegant, and the marble-pillared Laurel Court restaurant and bar transports you to a bygone era, serving up freshly-caught seafood and produce from boutique wineries. RD fairmont.com
HOTEL ZETTA, SAN FRANCISCO
Located in the buzzy Union Square district, this modern characterful 116-room hotel is part of the Viceroy brand. Its individually-designed rooms feature one-off artwork, and combine oriental rugs with butcher block desks and high tech. Meanwhile, the property’s social spaces that are “set to the tune of a Silicon Valley start-up” – with a nine-metre Plinko game wall and a Nintendo Wii U console. RD viceroryhotelsandresorts.com
HOTEL ZELOS, SAN FRANCISCO
Set in the historic Pacific building in San Francisco’s SOMA district, Hotel Zelos is an ideal place to stay if you’ve travelled in from Oakland (Powell Street BART station is just around the corner). The rooms are a reasonable size for the city’s often compact offerings, and the hotel boasts a decent restaurant, Dirty Habit, located on the fifth floor, which has a trendy vibe, great cocktails and a cocktail focused menu. A good pick, Hotel Zelos is within walking distance of Chinatown and Union Street. JT www. viceroyhotelsandresorts.com
WATERFRONT HOTEL, OAKLAND
Overlooking the waterfront in Oakland’s Jack London Square, this boutique hotel offers a nautical theme, hugely spacious rooms and is perfectly placed to explore everything Oakland has to offer. The wind-chiming concert of nearby boats is strangely comforting, as is the infrequent claxon of the Amtrak trains hurtling through the main thoroughfare a few streets away. A comfortable hotel with a very relaxed atmosphere. Don’t let the thought of all this surrounding noise put you off, this is a comfortable hotel with a very relaxed atmosphere, and I would definitely go back. JT www.jdvhotels.com
HURSTPIER POINT COLLEGE
JUSTINE GREENING MP THE SECRETARY OF STATE FOR EDUCATION By Maarten Hoffmann
ustine Greening took on the difficult portfolio of Secretary of State for Education and Minister for Women and Equalities upon the election of Theresa May as Prime Minister and has been in post since July 14th 2016.
2000 and, before entering parliament, she qualified as an accountant and worked with PricewaterhouseCoopers, GlaxoSmithKline and Centrica.
Greening was first elected as an MP for Putney in 2005 and, in 2013, was listed as one of the most powerful women in the UK by the BBC. Her first post was Economic Secretary to the Treasury in 2010, then Secretary of State for Transport in 2011 before her appointment as Secretary of State for International Development.
In 2016, Greening followed Donald Trump on revealing her life on-line and announced on Twitter that she was in a “happy same-sex relationship”, making her one of the very few openly LGBT members of the Cabinet.
Greening was born in Rotherham, where she attended Oakwood Comprehensive School. She studied Business Economics and Accounting at the University of Southampton, graduating with a first class honours degree in 1990. She obtained an Executive MBA from the London Business School in
She has also spoken in favour of creating new grammar schools and retaining university tuition fees which, although antagonistic to many, will cost £100 billion to remove and this will always need to be considered. In 2016, Greening followed Donald Trump on revealing her life on-line and announced on Twitter that she was in a “happy same-sex relationship”, making her one of the very few openly LGBT members of the Cabinet. Referring to the EU membership referendum, she added: “I campaigned for Stronger In but sometimes you’re better off out! She was previously in a relationship with Mark Clarke, the former director of the Young Britons’ Foundation and parliamentary candidate in Tooting, who was banned from the party for his involvement in a bullying scandal in Conservative Future. Greening is not only breaking the Tory mould by being the daughter of working class steel workers from Rotherham but she was also state educated and therefore some feel is the perfect candidate for the Education role. So what has she achieved in her first year in post? Following her appointment in July 2016, Ms Greening moved quickly to scrap a number of policies, including forced SATs re-sits for 11 year-olds and the controversial plan to force all schools in under-performing areas to become part of an academy chain. While she initially followed suit in praising Ms May’s grammar school plans, later interviews with the Secretary of State revealed her personal difference in opinion. Ms Greening was praised for seeing compulsory sex and relationships education pushed through for all schools, and is also known to have a good relationship with teaching unions – despite being heckled over the grammar schools pledge at the Association of School and College Leaders conference in March.
Russell Hobby, general secretary of school leaders’ union NAHT, said he welcomed her reappointment. “In the last few months she has shown a willingness to engage with the profession on important issues, such as primary
assessment and PSHE, paving the way for crucial changes in policy,” he said.“NAHT has worked well with the minister on the current consultation on primary assessment, and we look forward to continuing that to drive through the positive changes this contains. The biggest challenge for the minister will be school funding and she will need to argue vigorously for the needs of schools with her cabinet colleagues,” he added. Since the Tories lost their majority in the election vote, it remains unclear which education policies will be put forward, if any, in the coming weeks and months. Speaking on the BBC’s Sunday Politics programme, Graham Brady, chair of the 1922 Committee of backbench Tory MPs and a prominent supporter of grammar schools, said the party would have to “trim down our policies carefully to what we think Parliament will support”. Another source close to Downing Street was reported to have admitted the controversial grammar schools plans were “dead” thanks to Ms May’s lost majority. Others have speculated that the department will have no choice but to reassess school spending, following increasing pressure from school leaders and a series of budgeting
blunders. Teaching unions warned that if the Government decides to press ahead with cuts to school spending – calculated at a real-term loss of 7% per pupil – campaign efforts would “intensify” – hinting that strike action could be on the horizon.
The education of the next generation is not a game or a political football to be booted back and forth across the dispatch box. It is the key issue on whether the United Kingdom continues to grow as a society.
Greening has promised £1.3bn in funding for schools in England to head off a Conservative revolt, raiding the budget for free schools and new buildings to pay for the rise. She said schools would get the bailout over the next two years, after complaints
from Conservative MPs that Theresa May’s failure to deal with concerns about struggling schools cost the government its majority at the election. The education secretary pitched the £1.3bn as an increase above inflation in the core schools budget in 2018 and 2019. But it quickly emerged that the money was being diverted from other parts of the education budget, rather than new cash from the Treasury. In a partial compromise, Greening also announced a delay in the full implementation of the controversial new national funding formula, which means some schools will get more money and some lose cash per pupil in real terms. Under the plans, the new formula would only be indicative for its first two years in 2018 and 2019, with local authorities getting discretion over how to distribute the money during that time. Greening had argued in the cabinet for more money to pay for schools struggling with their budgets from the Chancellor Philip Hammond, amid stories about some headteachers begging parents for extra cash, cutting lunch breaks and dropping minority subjects. But she ended up having to find the cash from the Department for Education’s own
EDUCATION With Bill Gates
With Aung San Suu Kyi
budget out of efficiency savings, leading to accusations from opposition MPs that she was robbing Peter to pay Paul.
challenged his colleagues to come up with ways of paying for any extra spending outside of taxation or borrowing.
The bulk of the cash will come from an unidentified £600m of new cuts to the central Department for Education budget. A further £200m will come from the free schools budget by building 30 out of a planned 140 local authority schools instead. She will also take £420m from the capital budget for building and repairs, mostly from the “healthy pupils” funding for sports facilities and wellbeing. It comes at a time when May and Hammond are under pressure from some cabinet colleagues to ease austerity, after fearing the election result was a response to falling standards in public services.
The Department for Education has been facing questions over where it will get the funding to pay for its plans, after it reversed a manifesto pledge to scrap universal free school meals for infants. But Greening did partly explain how she would would pay with the controversial changes to the so-called “national funding formula” that redistributes money between well funded and underfunded schools. She promised funding would increase overall in real terms but some schools will see increases of just 0.5% on a per pupil basis while others will see their budgets go up by as much as 3%, creating winners and losers.
The education secretary pitched the £1.3bn as an increase above inflation in the core schools budget in 2018 and 2019. But it quickly emerged that the money was being diverted from other parts of the education budget, rather than new cash from the Treasury.
Greening is one of the few cabinet ministers to have raised her profile since the election, signalling she would like an end to the 1% pay cap for teachers. However, so far, Hammond has won the arguments for maintaining fiscal discipline until the next budget at least and
The new announcement was designed to placate schools and teachers ahead of the summer holiday, but a number of MPs, including some Conservatives, still had concerns about unfairness in the system. Angela Rayner, the shadow education secretary, said “They are not committing any new money and have not been clear about exactly what programmes they will be cutting to plug the funding black hole.” Layla Moran, the Lib Dem education spokesman, said the announcement was a “desperate attempt to pull the wool over people’s eyes.” Lucy Powell, the former shadow education secretary, also raised concerns that the £1.3bn would not be enough to ensure that schools do not lose per pupil funding in cash terms. Headteachers who have been involved in a school funding campaign across 17 counties called Worth Less?, gave a cautious welcome to the education secretary’s announcement, but expressed frustration over delays to the introduction of the new funding formula and said the campaign would continue until all
schools were adequately funded. The heads, who have been criticised for campaigning alongside parents against funding cuts, said in a statement: “As ever, it will be vital to examine the precise details carefully. Crucially, schools and families need to know what the announcement means in real terms for every pupil in our care.” Ian Hudspeth, spokesman for the County Councils Network, which includes many authorities whose schools have been historically underfunded, said: “It is imperative that government does not simply provide an uplift in basic per-pupil funding, as this would
GOOD SCHOOLS GUIDE
EDUCATION With actress Geena Davis
not address these historic inequities that have built up. Instead, it should seek to implement a baseline of funding that will allow each school to be sustainable in the long-term.” So, Justine Greening has her hands full and had better enjoy the Parliamentary recess whilst she can as the Autumn will bring her a wealth of problems and only then will we see if she is up to the job. In addition to the lack of privilege from her upbringing, Greening can also claim to have real world business experience, unlike so many politicians. She tells the story of one of her first job interviews with an investment bank. The Education Secretary said she made the faux pas when having lunch as part of a job interview for an investment bank. Because the menu had been written in Italian, bosses had expected her to be ‘confident’ enough to speak in that language. The politician, who was a young graduate at the time, realised too late she had ‘failed a test’ and was shunned for the post. She added the episode was an example of ‘unconscious bias’ against candidates from working class backgrounds, who may not have the same ‘polish’ as their more advantaged peers. Speaking at the launch of the first Social Mobility Index of employers, she said more companies needed to attract candidates from a wide range of backgrounds. She said it was about ‘changing attitudes’ within companies. Recalling the incident, she said: “The interview was fine, and then I got taken out to lunch by two of the junior managers in this investment bank. I remember trying to work out whether I should order the meal in Italian… or whether I should read the English translation underneath. In a split second, I decided I’m a non-pompous person, I will just read the English. And I could tell with the body language that I had just failed a test. “Because I was meant to have had the confidence, apparently, I think, to have
just said it in Italian. It wasn’t that I didn’t have confidence – I absolutely had lots of confidence as a person. But I just had a different attitude as to how I felt it was appropriate to behave. I had a sense of it being a test I had failed, not because I wasn’t going to do a great job at that company, but because I came from a different place and had a different attitude to that situation,” she said. “These are the small things that add up to big differences in terms of whether or not in the end people, I think, get opportunities.”
So, Justine Greening has her hands full and had better enjoy the Parliamentary recess whilst she can
She said she had been just one of many graduates who had ‘received the sharp end of unconscious bias’ because of their accent or behaviour. The Index, compiled by the Social Mobility Foundation, ranks employers on opportunities they provide for poorer applicants. The top three companies this year are accountancy firms Grant Thornton and KPMG and construction giant Skanska. Theresa May has vowed to help those from disadvantaged backgrounds get into top universities and firms. Greening is also outspoken about ‘gender fluidity’ and same sex marriage. She has stated that the Church of England should ‘keep up’ with modern society and drop its opposition to gay marriage while same-sex couples have been able to have civil weddings since 2013, the law still bars them from doing so in Anglican churches and suggested it was now time that the CofE allowed its vicars to bless homosexual unions.
“I think it is important that the church in a way keeps up and is part of a modern country. I wouldn’t prescribe to them how they should deal with that but I do think we are living in a country where people broadly recognise that attitudes are in a different place now to where they were many, many years ago. We have allowed same sex marriage, that is a massive step forward for the better and for me, I think people do want to see our major faiths keep up with modern attitudes in our country.” The Prime Minister joined in and also urged the Church to consider how attitudes had changed. And Commons Speaker John Bercow also said last week that gay people should be able to ‘bloody well’ get married in church if they wanted to. John Bercow’s comments were controversial as he is supposed to be politically neutral but as he has not been during his entire tenure, l am not sure it is wise to expect anything else from him. Greening has also announced plans to reform the Gender Recognition Act, previously described as “invasive” by Jeremy Corbyn. The Equalities Minister confirmed plans to make the process, described as “demeaning and broken” by Stonewall, easier by removing the need for a medical diagnosis of gender dysphoria before applying for your gender identity to be recognised. There are also proposals to make the process shorter. “This government is committed to building an inclusive society that works for everyone, no matter what their gender or sexuality and today we’re taking the next step forward,” said Greening. The announcement was condemned by Mary Douglas, a board member of the Grassroots Conservatives activist group, on Radio 4’s Today programme recently. She argued that some may enter the decision to have their gender changed on documentation too flippantly if the process was made easier. “If somebody thinks they have a
EDUCATION mismatch between the way they think and the way their body is, the question is which should be changed?” said Douglas. Maria Miller, the chair of the Women and Equalities Committee, had no truck with Douglas’ line of argument, saying “there was no evidence that anybody would take changing their gender casually at all.” “This is one of the most marginalised groups in our society,” added Miller, “and I think the government should be applauded.”
The politician, who was a young graduate at the time, realised too late she had ‘failed a test’ and was shunned for the post.
Again, we have a Tory government fiddling on the sidelines whilst Rome burns. Cameron did it with gay marriage - although a very worthy subject, it was only tackled to deflect attention away from other hot button issues, such as the economy and Brexit, rather than out of heart felt commitment to the subject. Let us hope that the gender fluidity issue is not yet another distraction from the vital matter at hand - that of proper funding for our schools. With Greening, there is hope that her background and open outlook will make it possible to forge ahead and fix our education system once and for all but as long as Hammond has the purse strings, few would bet on it. She further commented on her education: ”If you’d asked my teacher or William Hague’s teacher just down the road on the other side of Rotherham whether, in their two comprehensive schools, they thought they’d
be teaching two cabinet ministers, they wouldn’t have thought they were. It still shows you can get somewhere in Britain if you knuckle down. But it was bloody hard work. One of the reasons I am a Conservative is that I believe in effort and reward, and linking them. But I also believe in making sure that the ladder people climb up is there for them and they are encouraged to climb up it to whatever level they want to be at.” So there might be a hope that Justine Greening will get it right as surely, one of the biggest problems in education is the constant fiddling by every new government that comes to power. The education of the next generation is not a game or a political football to be booted back and forth across the dispatch box. It is the key issue on whether the United Kingdom continues to grow as a society. Every five years we elect a new government and some bright spark comes up with a new way of educating our children. It is time a policy was put in place, in close
collaboration with head teachers, that outlasts every government. It is time education was removed from the remit of government and placed in the hands of the front line workers the teachers.
Greening is one of the few cabinet ministers to have raised her profile since the election, signalling she would like an end to the 1% pay cap for teachers
As the leading business magazine in the UK, we often hear comments from businesses about the poor standard of job candidates, their lack of understanding of what business requires of them, their lack of basic skills, their lack of awareness of what work entails. This is not the fault of the schools or the teachers. This is the fault of a government that treats education as a budget drain and and a party political issue. Education, education, education. This mantra must be observed. The children are the future and their education should be at the top of every political agenda and teachers’ pay should be increased without delay to reflect the responsibility they carry for that future. Without a well educated workforce, any society is doomed to failure.
A QUIET SUCCESS STORY
Tucked away in a small village north of Brighton, Hurstpierpoint College has been an education success story with a 100% growth in student numbers over the last decade as well as ever-improving buildings and facilities. The school is rarely in the news and concentrates on what it does best. Which is exactly how they like it. Ian Trevett met with the Headmaster Tim Manly at the end of a busy academic year. THE COLLEGE It must be about two years since I last met with Hurst Headmaster Tim Manly and a lot has changed in that short period of time. “We have continued to expand since you and I last met,” says Mr Manly. “Next year, we will have about 800 pupils in the senior school and getting on for 1,200 across the entire college, so we are pretty much almost exactly double where we were when I first arrived. “We’re looking into the future now because we’ve gone through that phase of rapid expansion and we’ve reached the point where we are at the optimum size. We are an interesting hybrid of a local school which is predominantly boarding with the vast majority living within 50 minutes’ drive, plus increasing numbers from London.
“Last year we announced the decision to move away from full boarding, so there are no longer any overseas pupils. So, the challenge now is for us not to become too parochial and to ensure that there is a diversity here – and part of that is going to be answered by the London market.” It has been a period of constant growth and change, but the school is right to know when it is time to consolidate and stop chasing expansion. Perhaps this is a good lesson for the business world. However, growth was essential when Mr Manly first took over the reins. “When I first arrived and we were a 400-student senior school and everyone was saying how lovely that was. I said, “Yes, but the school is actually not making any sort of surplus, and if you want to offer what we want to be able to offer, it’s going to have to
be larger. The question is, how large can we go before we lose what we think is special?” I think we’re at the right place now. “We are a pretty chunky school and if we get much larger, as with my previous two schools, Oakham and Sevenoaks, then it starts becoming a little bit Darwinian in terms of whether someone’s in a team, production, event or not. It means unless you’re really good you don’t get the opportunity, and even if you do create lots of teams, you end up with someone who’s perfectly competent but they’re in an F team and the team probably has limited fixtures.” Getting too big can also mean the personal touch is lost. Mr Manly has always known the name of all his pupils. “I think that’s really important. I’m with Michael Wilshaw (former head of Ofsted) who said “Heads shouldn’t
EDUCATION be around showboating. They should be in their schools.” They should know what is happening and that it’s absolutely as it should be. If I walked out into the cloisters and didn’t recognise all the children then I would really feel like a stranger in my own school.”
boarding is hugely attractive. The students spend time with their families, but also have some independence. When they go off to university or to the world of work they have had the experience of being away from home.”
The numbers have grown and the facilities are improving, but perhaps the most fundamental change is in the nature of the school. In our last interview we spoke about the benefits of becoming completely co-educational. A more recent change is the switch to weekly and flexi-boarding.
An unintended benefit may also be that the school is less dependent on overseas students and therefore at less risk from any Brexit fallout. Does Mr Manly agree?
If I walked out into the cloisters and didn’t recognise all the children then I would really feel like a stranger in my own school.
“It’s the future of boarding in the South East,” says Mr Manly. “It has meant that we have not needed to go into the overseas market. Weekly and flexi three-nights-a-week
“A really interesting question! We had a debate last year about whether we should go for the overseas market or not, and my feeling is very simple: I don’t think we did the full boarding as well as other schools. “There’s a group of my governors who would, quite rightly, see full boarding as a good hedge against the UK economy tanking, because then you can fill the school with pupils from overseas, which is helped by sterling being very weak at the moment. I can understand that, but we’re a school and you have to work out what is right for the school as a community and a place of learning and then really focus on what you can do really well and better than other people. “Similarly, over the last few years we’ve had quite a few approaches about setting up schools in the Middle East, in Qatar and one or two other places, and I’ve always said no.
Tim Manly Culturally I’m not entirely comfortable with setting up a school in some of those areas, in terms of belief and value sets.” So is Hurstpierpoint College, therefore, future-proofed? “We have tried to keep it steady in terms of organic growth. Our pupil numbers have increased by 100%, but the growth has been incremental. We are building a new theatre,
EDUCATION a new girls’ day house, and a new Astroturf, and we’ve got a new sports complex in the pipeline, but all these things came after the numbers increased rather than before. We’ve not gone overboard on the debt and the borrowing. “The new theatre is an interesting development because we have a pretty good theatre already but it’s reached the end of its life. The new one will have a capacity of nearly 400. It’s not just about the drama, it’s about getting my whole Sixth Form, or other sections of the school, together for meetings, presentations or maybe to do another TEDx or offer a venue for Question Time. Then we can replace the old theatre with a new swimming pool and then replace the old swimming pool with a really large gym with a sprung floor for dance and aerobics. “We’re just putting our finishing touches to our sixth girls’ day house and we’re redeveloping a new boys’ day house as well. We now have six boys’ houses, six girls’ houses and then the Upper Sixth Form co-ed house. “But it’s not all about the buildings. We look at our children and ask: “Is this the right fit? Is this the right place?” But also: “Is this a school that will move around them, to fit them, rather than just expecting them to conform?” There are far too many “J.F. Kennedy” schools in the independent sector who ask not what
the school can do for a child, but what that child can do for them. It’s about taking a creative child who may be very, very bright, creative or sporty, or maybe not, but knowing they’re going to thrive according to their own ability.”
If all I’m doing is perpetuating a wealthy elite here, then that is not good enough. The pupils from this place have to be good people who are going to make a difference in the world.
CONNECTING WITH THE COMMUNITY The next big project for Mr Manly is to ensure the school shares both its experience and advantages. “We are very interested in linking with a free school. That would certainly be my aim.
We have connections with various academies within the Woodard Group but ideally we want to be involved with the sponsorship of at least one free school, ideally to start one from scratch locally with a fundamental sharing of facilities, experience and skills. “This may be the Burgess Hill free school, which has been mooted. There are also a few zones alongside the A23 at the moment which are earmarked for fairly rapid growth and building. These will need a new school which, depending how things change politically, will probably have free school status. We would want to be involved in their development.” If this becomes a reality it will fit perfectly with the original ethos of the school, a heritage which Mr Manly is very aware of. “I said this before - if all I’m doing is perpetuating a wealthy elite here, then that is not good enough. It has to be much, much more than that. The pupils from this place have to be good people who are going to make a proper difference in the world, but equally the resources of the college should be utilised in ways which benefit the broader community as well. “I think it’s very good for us to be part of the locality. Our staff and pupils will benefit hugely. I’m very keen to ensure we are meshed into our local community in a way that we are being seen, quite rightly, to be doing our bit.”
EDUCATION EDUCATION AND POLITICS
Since we last spoke there have been two new Education Ministers. Has there been a change of approach, I asked. “The biggest issue facing anyone in the Department of Education is the lack of money and with a hung parliament, we are in a state of not quite knowing which way education is going to go. I hope that they will continue to run with both the free schools and academies programmes because I think they’re both great programmes. “The maintained sector has taken a hammering. With the cap on pay, I think there’s a feeling that they have been a political football and that their position has been somewhat undermined.” This is certainly the case with the emphasis on results and targets, which can lead to a narrowing of the curriculum. Mr Manly concurs: “There’s a real sense that the number one priority is to get the right results because if you don’t, the consequences are very serious for you, your job and the money for the school. This puts people off coming into the profession, but the maintained schools that I visit seem to be very orderly, well-run and effective places.” Independent schools have always encouraged pupils to engage in debate, but this is not always the case elsewhere. But in the recent election we saw that young people voted in huge numbers. Is this down to Jeremy Corbyn being a positive influence in encouraging political engagement? “In terms of getting people to vote, yes. If you cast your mind back to the Brexit vote, one of the constant cries then was: Where were the under-23s or under-24s? If they had turned out, as they could have done, that vote would have quite easily tipped to remain. So in some ways, I think, it’s a really good thing.
“My observation is that it was a really poor decision by the Conservative Party to have the election when the universities were still in session because it meant you had places like Oxford, Cambridge and Canterbury stacked
“Having said that, the tuition fees issue is building into an absolute nightmare, potentially a scandal, as the amount of money lent that will get paid is very much in doubt. I speak as somebody who’s got one just
with a student vote that tipped the local result.
finishing university and one about to start. I don’t have an objection to the idea of fees, but the punitive interest rate makes no sense at all. You can get a much lower interest rate from your bank than is currently being charged on a student loan. That can’t be right.
I hope the government will continue to run with both the free schools and academies programmes because I think they’re both great programmes.
“For those like me who remember the 1970s, they will recognise some of the things being thrown around now, and some of the ideas which are seemingly attractive on the face of it actually could be pretty disastrous for the economy.
Mr Corbyn also suggested ending charity status for independent schools, with significant VAT implications for fees. How much of a challenge would this be? “That would be huge,’ says Mr Manly. “We are lucky to be where we are and maybe we’d be okay, but it would be a tough call for a lot of schools on whether they would survive. The net cost to the state would probably actually increase if more pupils needed to be accommodated in the maintained sector. “There are interesting debates on the whole question of taxation and where it should fall. There’s an intrinsic unfairness that a coffee shop down in Hurstpierpoint village is paying every tax under the sun, whereas a multi-national may be backing it out through Luxembourg or wherever. This is not a level playing field and there’s that feeling that if you are big enough as a corporation, then somehow you can manoeuvre around tax, but you and I cannot.” As before, the conversation with Mr Manly was fascinating and free-flowing and took in everything from French politics to Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. It is always an exchange that is thought-provoking, stimulating and open, but most of all, enjoyable. If only I was many, many years younger, I would love to be learning at this school.
CHESS IN SCHOOLS AND COMMUNITIES by Malcolm Pein
he perception of chess as a game reserved for the intellectual elite could not be further from the truth. The ‘universal’ game has stood the test of time – for over a thousand years – because it is easy to learn and has the power to bring people together. The game that crosses all barriers of age, gender, ethnicity or disability, chess is ideal for breaking down barriers; so much so that it’s played by an estimated half a billion people around the world. The benefits of chess extend far further, especially when played from a young age. Learning chess in primary school can help develop a range of key social skills and educational attributes, such as problem solving, logical thinking, planning ahead and the ability to concentrate. Given the surge of technology available to younger generations and the requirement for visual stimuli via smartphone screens, this last trait is becoming more and more important. What’s more, evidence suggests a clear link between playing chess and increased academic attainment, while a meta-study from 2016 has shown that chess can have a significant impact on mathematical ability. Chess suffered a dip in popularity around the turn of the millennium when computer games took hold, but it is now enjoying a surge in social status. No more is this the case than in schools right across the UK where participation has increased three-fold in as many years thanks to the work of a charity that delivers the game to state schools and encourages them to include in the curriculum. Chess lessons delivered in state schools via curriculum time lessons is a radical idea but one being embraced by 100s of head teachers nationwide as the initiative of Chess in Schools and Communities grows. Now in over 800 state schools, chess is being used as a tool to aid educational development in children and also build softer attributes like confidence, self-esteem and what educational psychologists call ‘grit’ – a wonderful term that summarises the ability to cope with whatever life throws at us. Chess also teaches children that actions have consequences and that you sometimes have to take responsibility for them. All of these things can help children grow into well-rounded and employable individuals. Given the competition for places in the cut-
throat world of business, these skillsets can be invaluable in giving children a helping hand when building their CV or stepping into an interview. The charity’s experience is that even at a young age, chess ability can help children get into the best secondary schools. Consider how children can learn to socialise and make new friends from different backgrounds from a foundation of shaking the opponent’s hand before and after a game, develop problem solving skills from working out the best way to escape from a tricky situation on the board, or improve forward planning by thinking several moves ahead. It becomes clear how chess can boost the skills children need to succeed in a professional capacity. That’s the mission of the charity – to give as many children as possible the best chances of succeeding later in life. Malcolm Pein is Chief Executive of Chess in Schools and Communities, a charity that delivers chess to state schools as a tool to foster intellectual character, problem solving skills and employability.
Please visit: www.chessinschools.co.uk.
The original girls’ school
OPEN DAY – SATURDAY 7 OCTOBER 2017 – 10AM ‘Excellent in every area’ in its recent ISI inspection report, Roedean has a holistic approach to education which embraces the wonder and excitement of learning, develops the talents of every girl, and kindles new passions. Happy, relaxed, and engaged, the girls are challenged in their learning, play cricket with the sea behind them, enjoy accommodation which is like a boutique hotel, and grow up at their own pace.
Lancing College Preparatory Schools, Senior School & Sixth Form
Open Mornings Saturday 7 October 2017 10.30 am – 1 pm
Saturday 14 October 2017 10 am – 12 noon
Lancing Prep Hove The Droveway, Hove East Sussex BN3 6LU
Broadwater Road, Worthing West Sussex BN14 8HU
T 01273 465 805 E firstname.lastname@example.org
T 01273 503 452 E email@example.com
T 01903 201 123 E firstname.lastname@example.org
Lancing, West Sussex BN15 0RW
Registered Charities Lancing College & Lancing Prep Hove 1076483. Lancing Prep Worthing 1155150
Saturday 14 October 2017 10 am – 12 noon Lancing Prep Worthing
OPEN YOUR EYES AT OPEN DAYS Lancing College offers some tips on making the most of school Open Days
hoosing a school is one of the most important decisions you will make as a parent.
Open Days can help, if you know what to look for... It’s time to head back to school for a new academic year and for many parents, it is time to think about choices for your child’s first, or indeed next, step on the education ladder. Schools know that decisions will be made over the coming months, so are keen to show themselves off in the very best light. In other words, it is the season of the school Open Day. Open Days are a wonderful opportunity to explore potential schools but how accurate a picture can you get from an organised tour? Inevitably, the school will seek to make everything look as attractive as possible, but you can still get a good feel for a school.
Do your homework
Look at the school website before the Open Day. Read the latest inspection report. This will give you a basic knowledge of the school before you arrive there.
Consider class numbers and the size of school. What is the staff to pupil ratio? The higher the ratio, the more individual support will be available for your child.
Listen to the headteacher
Look beyond first impressions
If they give a welcoming speech, do they have a vision and passion? Does it come over as a well-polished performance or do they speak from the heart? This is the person who leads and shapes the school. Did you feel inspired?
A building may look great but the quality of the education experience within that building should be a priority. Are the classrooms stimulating environments? Do you think your child would thrive there?
Find out what extras the school has to offer. Does it have out of school clubs and sports available? If cost is an issue, are they expensive? Is there support for children who show particular interest in music, languages or art? Does it have an enhanced curriculum that does more than cover the basics?
Take your child with you
Look at the pupils’ work on display
Your child will probably remain at that school for several years – so look into how it provides for older children as well as the younger ones. Are children progressing as they should?
Don’t forget it is your child that will be going to the school every day. Ask their opinion? Has the school inspired them? They may pick up on things you may not notice.
Don’t just concentrate on the quality, look at how many pupils have work shown. Are they are just showcasing the work of a few talented pupils?
Remember the purpose of your visit is to get a feel for the school
Decide for yourself
Read the noticeboards
If there is anything you want to know, this is your opportunity to ask questions.
Take the chance to talk to teachers and pupils. Are they enthusiastic about their school? Would you like the staff to teach your child? Are pupils confident and assured? Would they be good role models for your child?
Is there plenty going on? Most importantly, try to get a feel for what goes on in the school when it isn’t an Open Day.
What next? If you like what you see, then arrange to come in for a personal visit on a normal school day.
THE GREAT SCHOOLS DEBATE Great Walstead School’s Marketing Manager, Adrian Ashby, on the origin of education in a neoliberal economy
s we grow older, some of us form opinions about the various systems that affect our lives on a daily basis. Type system into Wikipedia and you will get a list of hundreds if not thousands of systems that humans have created - real or abstract - to help us understand and deal with what otherwise might confound us. The education system is one such example, albeit in its nursery years compared to erm … the solar system. I recently stumbled upon a wonderful independent article by Derek Gillard (2011) titled, Education in England: a brief history. A fantastic resource for the uninitiated educational historian, the overarching opinion that crystalised in my mind was how utterly complex it all is. He demonstrates how England’s education system has both shaped and been shaped by other systems; social, political and financial being the most prominent. I would have to agree with his conclusion, that England’s history of publically funded education is a “sad story” of missed opportunities, and I do concur with the comments of his proponents that state the
mainstream choice you and I have between two mutually exclusive systems: that of public education (maintained sector) and the forces of the ‘free’ market (independent sector). However, that is where we part company, the divergence being that both education systems actually complement each other – we don’t have to have one or the other!
Both education systems actually complement each other – we don’t have to have one or the other!
Privately educated, but having worked in the corporate world and both education sectors, and sending my children to supposedly outstanding OFSTED primary and secondary maintained schools, I have a reasonable idea of both systems. So, my considered approach is live and let live and the distinction I draw is all about the pace of evolution within a system.
In the ideal world we all get access to what we want, when we want with zero outlay of our time and effort – save for pleasurable pursuits. For over a hundred years (in most cases), independent schools and their leaders have surfed the wave of neoliberalism, archiving experience of how to please their spectrum of stakeholders. Compared to the behemoth that is government-centric, publically funded education answerable to the slow, complex and often misguided pace of modern democracy, private schools are like Mohammed Ali; floating like a butterfly, stinging like a bee. They’re not exempt from government control but if I had the money, I would have sent my children to private school for this reason alone! The other reason is that it works; highlighted by the 2012 Sutton Trust report. At this point, supporters of free education for all will generally raise their hands in abject disbelief. Stop, breath, look around and we notice that the same people are using their money instead to invest in things. No-one earning a middle combined income would argue that they don’t value/invest in things that buy them precious time – it is the same
for independent education. And don’t forget that parents who send their children to private schools are paying both the fees and the tax that pays, in part, for the education of those who simply cannot afford it.
what can be achieved in any given timeframe due to a lack of facts upon which to base decisions, a detail that is exacerbated by complex systems like politics and globalised economics.
At this juncture, I should back-off a little. Biennially, RSAcademics Ltd and Coutts produce their Ten Trends survey. The survey confirms the widely held opinion that access to independent schools is increasingly prohibited by cost. Whereas, once upon a time, 14% of the British population had the potential to access independent education, it is now down to 7%. Of course, this reflects the growing gap between the richest 1% and the rest of us – a global issue that definitely needs curtailing but it places a huge environmental pressure on independent schools.
We could purport that this gives the standalone Prep School, like any small business, a niche to exploit if they can evolve to fill it. Staying close to the facts, crunching the details and taking a meticulous approach to customer satisfaction is what we have been doing for a hundred years. We know our customers intimately, we talk to them every day, we are entrusted with the future of their most prized possession, their children. We care, we act and we adapt, we evolve and we do it quickly otherwise we don’t survive; we are an extension of the family unit. Our very presence in the market is a sign of success in itself and where would the government be if we weren’t here? I’ll leave that discussion for another time.
Great Walstead is moving from platform to prize
This is especially true of stand-alone Prep Schools such as Great Walstead. I can instantly think of four Prep Schools within 15 miles of Great Walstead that have closed down in the last five years, whilst independent senior schools have used their considerable resources to prop up others who are struggling. For the stand-alone Prep School then, relinquishing its independence to the forces of the market may seem like a forgone conclusion, inevitable. Except, that is where evolution plays its joker card. In his international best-seller ‘Thinking, Fast and Slow’ (2011), Daniel Kahneman (Nobel prize-winner in economics, 2002), reminds us of the fact that humans often overestimate
status by supporting our families and local community as much as possible, giving back as much as possible where we can. Hopefully, the government and business will intervene enough to raise standards of education across the system without the need for centralised micro-management and the slow evolution that typifies it. There are so many good teachers out there who can inspire the thinking of our human future and we need to give them a chance. Mr Gillman highlights the need for teaching to be returned to the profession that it is, in line with doctors and lawyers and I agree. Until then, Great Walstead will continue to learn from its mistakes and snap-up opportunities that benefit the most precious of human systems, the family.
Great Walstead is changing. A new Head, Chris Calvey, has been appointed for September, after an exhaustive search involving every stakeholder in the school’s community. We are used to evolving and are confident that this step represents another positive phase in the continued success of Great Walstead; as our supportive governors coined the phrase, we are moving from ‘platform to prize’. A new working farm built on the principles of permaculture, situated in the picturesque walled Victorian kitchen garden, provides children with endless academic and practical life-learning opportunities. A new after-school care building launches in October to provide an even better environment and flexibility for busy working parents. Our fees are being kept as low as possible, a 2% rise this year compared with the industry average of 3.5%, and we continue to enhance our charitable
Open Morning Invitation
‘School in action’ morning Tuesday 10TH October 2017 9:30am start – until 11:30am Call our Registrar on 01444 483528 to book your place, just turn up or visit www.greatwalstead.co.uk and click on the Open Morning link to learn more!
A GLOBAL EDUCATION IN SUSSEX
he choice of schools is greater than ever before with parents now considering state funded academies and free schools alongside independent schools for their children. One group of schools in Sussex offers something different for those parents. Aurora Academies Trust operates six schools across Sussex and Brighton which are state schools funded directly by the Department for Education, rather than by local councils. They are free to attend and non-selective. In 2016 Aurora was one of the highest performing trusts in the country for progress in reading. Aurora was founded as a charity in 2012 and took over 4 primary schools that year: King Offa Primary Academy and Glenleigh Park Primary Academy in Bexhill on Sea and Oakwood Primary Academy and Heron Park Primary Academy in Eastbourne. In 2014 it opened a brand new all-through school called The Gatwick School in Crawley. In September 2017, City Academy Whitehawk in Brighton became the sixth school in the trust. As well as having a focus on serving local communities, Aurora has a global perspective through its partnership with Pansophic Learning, an international education company. Pansophic runs state funded charter schools in US and also owns private schools in Switzerland, Uganda and Dubai. Pansophic was founded in 2014 by Ron Packard, a leading education entrepreneur, and is based in McLean, Virginia. Pansophic provides the innovative humanities curriculum by Aurora which encourage the study of different cultures around the world. Martha Burnige, Trustee of Aurora and Executive Vice President of Pansophic explains the benefits of international collaboration. “Whilst all of our international schools operate in different local contexts, excellent teaching, first class professional development and high quality leadership are universal themes in our schools. We want pupils in the UK to develop deep links with their counterparts overseas which will help them to seize the opportunities provided by globalisation.”
employers as well as exciting opportunities to see how technology is used in the workplace. The school building is currently undergoing a multi-million pound refurbishment to provide state of the art facilities. When full it will have 1020 pupils. The Gatwick School is one of growing number of “all-through” schools which cater for pupils from the age of 4 to 16. Tim McCarthy, Chief Executive Officer of Aurora, is a supporter of this new style of education “As a former secondary headteacher I know the transition from primary to secondary school can be difficult for some children. At The Gatwick School we have seen first-hand the benefit of educating primary and secondary pupils in one school setting. Although they are not taught together, the pupils have some joint assemblies and the older ones enjoy helping the younger ones with their reading. We are able to use the expertise of the specialist secondary teachers for the benefit of the younger pupils and are able to track the progress of pupils from reception class through to GCSEs.” Aurora also takes the pastoral care of its pupils very seriously. The personal development and welfare of The Gatwick School’s pupils was recently judged to be outstanding by Ofsted inspectors who particularly liked the student leadership group, made up of younger and older pupils. Inspectors stated that “these opportunities help pupils of all ages to develop the skills that will help them to become future leaders”.
For more information about Aurora schools, to attend an open day or to arrange a tour, please contact Tim McCarthy, Chief Executive Officer, at email@example.com.
Aurora is particularly proud of The Gatwick School which is located in the Manor Royal Business District. Its proximity to the airport and to national and international businesses has provided the links with
MERGER MANIA Our county’s Further Education Colleges all seem to have merged together or have plans to do so. It is no coincidence. In fact, the government has actively encouraged consolidation in the sector. By Ian Trevett Northbrook, Worthing
n August, it was announced that two of our leading regional legal firms, DMH Stallard and Rawlison Butler are to merge together with effect from September. Across the professional services sector there has been a tangible trend of consolidations, mergers and acquisitions over the past few years. Sometimes it is to create a stronger presence in the market, sometimes it is a solution to a firm’s succession. Whatever the reason, big is beautiful. The same most definitely applies to the Further Education Colleges. Earlier this year the merger of Northbrook College and Brighton’s City College was completed to create Greater Brighton Metropolitan College. Over the summer, Chichester College and Central Sussex combined into the Chichester College Group. Next up, will be the combination of Sussex Downs College and Sussex Coast College. The day of ‘Supercollege’ has truly arrived. Of the 450 colleges in England at incorporation in 1993, only 243 remained in July 2016. It has been on the cards for several years, but the trend became inevitable in 2015 when the Government produced its “Reviewing post16 Education and Training Institutions” report. It spelt out in no uncertain terms that small, local colleges were becoming unsustainable, as this except reveals:
“A … major reform of post-16 education and training institutions is now necessary, in a way which also addresses the significant financial pressures on institutions including a declining 16-19 population and the need to maintain very tight fiscal discipline in order to tackle the deficit.
Government Report “We will need to move towards fewer, often larger, more resilient and efficient providers.”
“We will need to move towards fewer, often larger, more resilient and efficient providers. We expect this to enable greater specialisation, creating institutions that are genuine centres of expertise, able to support progression up to a high level in professional and technical disciplines, while also supporting institutions that achieve excellence in teaching essential basic skills – such as English and maths.” The justification is that larger colleges can offer more targeted courses and will be able to specialise. In reality, the driver has been
money, or more accurately the lack of money. At the same time school sixth forms have come under equal pressure. The Association of School and College Leaders has stated that a sixth form needs to have at least 200 pupils to be economically sustainable. In 2015-16, more than 1,000 school sixth forms had fewer than 200 pupils, and 88 had fewer than 50 sixth formers. The combining of colleges can make economic sense. The Guardian reported on the example of Leeds City College, which has overseen three mergers involving five colleges since 2009: “Centralising resources and joining up on back office systems is one of the great benefits. The college now delivers all of its hair and beauty provision on one site, which has helped to reduce staff and site management costs. Being a bigger college also makes it easier to explore other business avenues. The college’s catering and hospitality section, for example, has set up a bakery and butchers, and students help run a canteen at a local engineering company.” Unions are not so keen, with the potential loss of jobs involved in the mergers. But most see the tide of mergers as an inevitability, and concentrate on making the new system work as well as possible for both students and staff.
The Sussex Mergers
Northbrook College and City College Brighton Greater Brighton Metropolitan College (MET) was created from the merger of City College Brighton and Northbrook College Sussex. The MET operates across five campuses in Brighton, Shoreham, Worthing and teaches around 3,500 16-18 year olds, 7,500 adult learners, 1,000 undergraduates and 800 apprentices.
Apprenticeships at the MET It’s not too late to sign up for September day release
Northbrook MET is the principal provider of work-related further education in an area centred on the south coast town of Worthing. It appointment just drop in is alsoNo the largest provider in Westnecessary, Sussex of undergraduate courses for the creative and cultural industries.
Chose from the following qualifications:
at the Broadwater campus
And these work-based qualifications:
Accounting Adult Social Care Business & Administration Decorative Finishing & Industrial Children & Young People's Painting WorkforceStephen Burkes, Digital Marketing of Sussex CustomerDirector Service Electrical & Electronic Engineering Skills Solutions Early Years Educator Electrical Installation Food & Beverage Services Hairdressing General Adult Social Care Heavy Vehicle Sussex Downs College and Sussex Coast Health Clinical Healthcare Support IT Application Specialist College Hastings Hospitality Services IT, Software, Web & Telecoms Hospitality Supervision & their intent to merge (subject to due The colleges have declared Professionals Leadership diligence). Further talks are planned to examine the business case for Light Vehicle Leadership & Management a formal merger and if successful the new college will launch on March Chichester College and Maintenance Operations Management 29, 2018. Central Sussex College Project Management Mechanical Sussex Downs College offers full-time and part-time courses including Sales & Telesales Mechanical The Maintenance merger, which took place on 1st August, A-levels, BTECs, apprenticeships and a wide range of vocational Senior Warehouse Person/Team created the largestOperations college group in Sussex, Performing Engineering qualifications. A total of 3,800 students aged 16-19 and 6,000 adult Plumbing providing high quality learning opportunities Leader learners enrolled in 2016/17 across three sites in Eastbourne, Lewes and Sustainable for around 25,000 students each year. Newhaven. Resource Professional Cookery Management As part the merger, Central Sussex College has been renamed to of Travel & Tourism In 2010 Sussex Coast College Hastings opened two new college Team Leading reflect the group’s to the local community and will now be campuses, one on Station Plaza in the town centre and the other in Ore Woodcommitment Occupations Warehouse Operative known as Crawley College.
Shelagh Legrave OBE DL has been appointed Chief Executive Officer for the group. She is joined by Kieran Stigant, who takes up his position as Chair of the corporation. A new – Vicki Illingworth - has also been appointed for Forprincipal further information, please contact Business Crawley College, while Andrew Green will become executive principal at (01903) 273 732 Chichester College.
Valley. The £120 million project was transformative for Hastings and the college now welcomes over 1,800 young people and 4,000 adults every year to full-time and part-time academic and vocational courses from across Hastings and Rother.
Sussex Coast Solutions on:College is also launching a University Centre in
September 2017 offering degrees and higher education to 400 students.
The colleges have been close working partners for some time. Launched a year ago, Sussex Skills Solutions is a highly successful joint venture that is focussed on apprenticeships and employer related Northbrook Metropolitan College, Broadwater Campus, trading. Working in partnership will be a hallmark of the new college It also has an extensive portfolio of successful commercial businesses Broadwater Road, Worthing, West Sussex, BN14 8HJ as new and innovative ways of working are established with schools, which operate alongside the colleges, including a chain of childcare parents, employers, social enterprises and local authorities. nurseries (First Steps Childcare), an examination board, international The group covers four main sites – Chichester College, Crawley www.northbrook.ac.uk/BusinessSolutions College, Brinsbury (a land-based campus) and Horsham Training Centre.
education and sports and conferencing facilities.
BUSINESS HAS A KEY ROLE IN EDUCATION
cross England, 66% of businesses would prefer to employ a young person who has work experience but only 34% of employers offer work experience to young people in education and there are many reasons for this mismatch. The vast majority of employers are keen to engage in education and share knowledge about their company and industry but are just not sure where to start. Schools and colleges, by their very nature, work to very tight timescales and are focussing on qualification attainment as this is the main area on which they are graded by Ofsted. Also, around 85% of the companies in the Coast to Capital area (West Sussex, Brighton & Hove, Lewes, East Surrey and Croydon) have 10 or fewer employees so they do not necessarily have the resources to reach out in the same way as medium to large companies. However, they will all need the next generation to work for them. One of the best ways to ensure that young people in education have an understanding of industry and the pathways to work is for businesses to get involved in the Enterprise Adviser Network. This is an innovative idea that links the worlds of work and education. Senior business leaders are recruited as Enterprise Advisers to volunteer directly with the senior leadership team in a school or college for around 8 hours a month. They meet with the head teacher and other senior colleagues to develop a strategic plan to embed careers and enterprise across the curriculum and increase the number of employer encounters for every student. This can include a variety of activities from work experience, work place visits, inspirational talks and real-life projects to help students understand more about what opportunities are available to them. Another way to support the Enterprise Adviser Network is to become an Industry Champion. It gives business leaders an opportunity to promote their industry, share knowledge, and talk about their career and pathway into work. This helps students see that there are many different jobs and industries that will link with the skills and knowledge that they have. Coast to Capital LEP delivers the Enterprise Adviser Network and employs five Enterprise Coordinators who facilitate and manage these strategic relationships as well as creating a network of employers from across the LEP area who are keen to engage with schools and colleges. Each of the Enterprise Coordinators look after around 20 schools and colleges and work within the business community to enable more collaboration between education and the world of work, ensuring that the future workforce has the skills and competencies to work effectively in a changing world. They also work very closely with stakeholders
and partners including Chambers, Local Authorities, business groups, Universities and organisations such as the National Careers Service, Engineering UK, CIPD, and the British Science Association. Beki Tonks, Senior Enterprise Coordinator said: â€œBuilding a strong and sustainable bridge between the worlds of work and education is absolutely vital to the future of our economy. Young people need to have meaningful encounters with employers across a variety of sectors to help them make more informed decisions about their future education and career plans. Getting involved in the Enterprise Adviser Network will provide you with the platform to positively influence our future workforce and ensure ongoing economic stability and the growth of innovation in our area.â€?
If you are interested in becoming involved in this excellent careers and enterprise initiative please contact Beki Tonks on 07484 542006 or email the team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
SHOULD YOU BE SCHOOL GOVERNOR?
t won’t take up too much of your time,” my children’s genial primary headteacher reassured me as he co-opted me onto the governing body. “Just one meeting per term, and leave the rest to the professionals” – or words to that effect. It sounded so eminently manageable that morning at the school gate. How could I say no? So why, according to a new report from the charity Governors for Schools, are one in 10 governor posts currently vacant, with the shortfall as high as one in four in some schools in rural and deprived areas? The answer lies in the gap between promise and reality. The latter, I only discovered once I had my feet under the governors’ table, is that being a governor can take over your life, whether you intend it or not. Don’t get me wrong. I don’t blame the head. Had he asked if I’d take responsibility for appointing his successor, signing off the school budget, overseeing classroom standards, getting involved in tricky safeguarding issues, meeting Ofsted inspectors for a hostile interview which could, if I mucked it up, cost the school a prized “outstanding” ranking, and attending endless training sessions laid on by the local authority to equip me to understand the mountain of statutory responsibilities that sit on the governors’ shoulders, I would obviously have said no. As for leaving it to the professionals, one of the prime roles of a governor, I quickly learnt, is to do the polar opposite – to be a “critical
friend” to the head, which can cause a good deal of tension. At best, becoming a school governor is a lottery. Perhaps, in a well-run, high-achieving school, below the radar as far as Ofsted is concerned, with settled staff and committed parents, it could just about be a breeze, all things being even. I’ve never met a fellow governor, though, who has had it that good. It is baffling that school governors, the largest volunteer force in the country, are invisible to so many people – nationally, in their local authorities and even in their schools. Why? Most people have been to school, so they know what teachers and heads do – even
if things have moved on since they sat in a classroom. Few will recall seeing any governors, except, perhaps, on a speech day or other awards ceremony. Who knows what governors are for and what they do? Heads and teachers are salaried professionals, with professional associations to protect and promote their interests. The National College of School Leadership’s remit does not include governors. Governors are volunteers and amateurs – although they are charged with very significant responsibilities which they must carry out professionally. Their representative groups are run on a shoestring. In any walk of life the professional always has more power and influence than the amateur – and a higher profile. “The work of governing bodies goes largely unnoticed” according to the University of Bath’s excellent school governance study published in October 2008 (and described in the Nov/Dec edition of School Governor Update). It recommends that “The status of governing bodies should be enhanced, their contribution more widely recognised, and greater publicity given to school governing in all sectors of society especially the business community”. It does not say how this should be achieved, though.
THE STATE OF PLAY J ustine Greening has confirmed sex education is to be made compulsory in all schools in England.
All children from the age of four will be taught about safe and healthy relationships and children in secondary schools will be given age-appropriate lessons about sex. The move follows months
of campaigning from MPs and charity groups who successfully argued that the current curriculum is years out of date and does not reflect the dangers faced by young people today. Until now, schools that are not under local authority control have not been obligated to include sex and relationships within their teaching, and those that are need only include biology. The Government’s announcement will mean all schools across England are now bound by the same
obligation and include lessons on the dangers of online pornography, sexting and sexual harassment. In a written statement, Ms Greening said statutory guidance for Relationships and Sex Education (SRE) was introduced in 2000 and is becoming “increasingly outdated”. “It fails to address risks to children which have grown in prevalence in recent years, including online pornography, sexting and staying safe online,” she said. “As a result now is the right time to address these issues.”
SOCIAL MOBILITY OPPORTUNITY AREAS The “opportunity areas” programme focuses on bolstering teacher support and improving schools as well as careers advice, mentoring and apprenticeship opportunities. A new fund, made up of £1.5million of Department for Education funding and £2million from the Education Endowment Foundation, will be used to create new “research schools” in each area that will share evidence about the best ways of boosting the performance of disadvantaged pupils. JG: “Opportunity areas will help local children get the best start in life, no matter what their background. Ensuring all children can access high-quality education at every stage is critical. We will focus not just on what we can do to help inside schools, but also create the opportunities outside school that will raise sights and broaden horizons for young people.” Kevin Courtney, general secretary of the National Union of Teachers, said it is “highly disingenuous” and “misleading in the extreme” for the Education Secretary to suggest that the funding is “new”. The £72million will not go far compared with the impacts of the worst funding crisis in decades for all schools and sixth form colleges.”
GRAMMAR SCHOOLS Justine Greening has confirmed the plan to open a new generation of grammar schools is dead. The Education Secretary slipped out the announcement in a written answer recently, dodging the opportunity to confirm the policy change in the Commons chamber. Unleashing a new wave of grammar schools was one of Theresa May’s flagship policies in the General Election campaign, but it was not included in the Queen’s Speech - used by the Government to set out the legislation it plans to pass over the next two years. Greening’s statement indicated the Government is not planning to use other means to push the policy forward. Responding to a question from Labour’s Catherine West on “whether it remains the Government’s policy to allow the opening of new grammar schools”, Greening replied: “There was no education bill in the Queen’s Speech, and therefore the ban on opening new grammar schools will remain in place.”
EDUCATION TEACHERS The Department for Education said: “Teaching remains an attractive career and the latest statistics show that around 90% of teachers continue in the profession following their first year of teaching – this has been the case since 1996. The number of former teachers coming back to the classroom has also risen significantly – from 13,090 in 2011 to 14,200 in 2016. Nearly a quarter of the teachers who qualified since 2011 have left the job, according to research. The figures have raised concerns over the pressures faced in the classroom. Along with other public sector workers, teachers have had a 1% cap which is due to remain in place until 2020. More than 27,500 teachers who trained between 2011 and 2015 had quit the profession by 2016, the figures showed, equating to 23% of teachers leaving. JG: “We are actively addressing the issues that teachers cite as reasons for leaving the profession, for example by supporting schools to reduce unnecessary workload and improving behaviour management training for new teachers. Teachers play a hugely important role in our society, providing education and guidance for future generations.”
OPPORTUNITY AREAS Blackpool, Derby, Norwich, Oldham, Scarborough, Somerset, Bradford, Doncaster, East Cambridgeshire, Hastings, Ipswich, Stoke. Brett Wigdortz OBE, Founder and CEO of Teach First said: “Every child, wherever they are born, deserves a brilliant education and fair start in life. We’re delighted the Department for Education is expanding their opportunity areas, by investing in a further 6 communities that have for too long been left behind.” Andrew Warren, Chair of Teaching Schools Council, said: “The Teaching Schools Council welcomes the expansion of opportunity areas and the positive impact that we believe these programmes can and will have, both in the short and longer term. This initiative is completely in keeping with our vision that every child goes to a great school: every child, whatever their background, whatever their postcode. We look forward to working with schools, RSCs, MATs, LAs and other partners to play our part in this exciting opportunity.” Sir Kevan Collins, Chief Executive of the Education Endowment Foundation, said: “Improving educational standards in ‘coldspots’ is one of the biggest challenges we face in our drive to improve social mobility. While evidence of ‘what works’ is one of our most useful tools to do this, we know that research on its own is not enough to make a difference in the classroom.” The Rt Hon Alan Milburn, Chair of the Social Mobility Commission, said: “Britain has a deep social mobility problem which is getting worse for a whole generation of young people and has left whole communities feeling left behind and socially hollowed out. One of the biggest barriers to social mobility in Britain today is an unfair education system, which is why the Commission has repeatedly called on the government to tackle the issues that prevent children from fulfilling their true potential.”
AVERAGE SPEND BY SCHOOL PER PUPIL, BY REGION 2014-15 • South West - £5,918 • Inner London - £4,545 • Outer London - £4,417 • North West - £4,306 • England - £4,292 • West Midlands - £4,279 • North East - £4,198 • Yorkshire and the Humber - £4,040 • South East - £4,034 • East of England - £3,985 • East Midlands - £3,916 Source: Department of Education, Schools Education and Children’s Services Spending Get the data
WORKING WITH YOU EVERY STEP OF THE WAY From developing your staff to developing new products, weâ€™re open for business. At the University of Brighton our dedicated team has been leading the way in knowledge exchange for decades. Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTP) are a highly successful formula, which has just been extended to reach even more types and sizes of business.
Our Green Growth team work specifically with a network of environmentally-focussed companies to support them with training courses, workshops, access to experts and current research.
There are many ways that the university can use its expertise to help your business - some are part-funded by the Government. Contact us at KnowledgeExchange.ac.uk to find out more.
We are also developing a suite of Degree Apprenticeships in many sectors such as health, business, construction and civil engineering. If you would like to upskill your existing staff or take on an apprentice in any of these areas, contact Viki Faulkner on V.J.Faulkner@brighton.ac.uk to find out more.
Pete from PSM Instrumentation Ltd, and KTP Associate Ayodele.
Managing Director at BCMY (Green Growth Platform member).
Find out how your organisation can work with the University of Brighton at www.brighton.ac.uk/biz17
SHARING KNOWLEDGE Universities are about much more than teaching degree courses. Their research and enterprise activity fuels many significant benefits to society and the economy, often through collaborative partnerships with businesses. Dr Farzad Barari, KTP Associate at Ceres Power
he Knowledge Transfer Partnership scheme (KTP), funded by Innovate UK, is one of the most well-known forms of knowledge exchange and the University of Brighton is one of the UK leaders in this area, and has been actively running KTP programmes for many years with over 250 companies of all types and sizes. Knowledge Transfer Partnerships are a three-way partnership between a company, a recent graduate known as an ‘Associate’ who will work on a project on behalf of the company, and senior university specialists who have the knowledge the company needs to access to innovate and grow. In addition to KTPs, universities can offer other knowledge exchange programmes that offer short, flexible projects, with or without an Associate involved. Knowledge exchange projects benefit from government funding of up to 67% which makes them an attractive option for businesses wanting to access university expertise. Some recent examples of knowledge exchange include:
• sharing product design expertise to optimise the design and manufacture of mobile drilling rigs for Dando Drilling. Highview Power Storage Chief Executive Gareth Brett said: “Working with the University of Brighton on the KTP gave us efficient, interactive access to targeted academic research and expertise, and a means of integrating this directly into our business. As a technology SME, this was invaluable to unlocking the rapid progressive development of a critical part of our system.” As part of the Government’s Industrial Strategy, enhanced levels of funding are currently available for projects across all sectors that aim to develop innovative products and services that will help the economy to grow. Projects in the following broad categories are particularly encouraged: manufacturing and materials; emerging and enabling technologies; infrastructure systems; and health and life sciences.
Find out more about how knowledge exchange can work for your organisation at www.brighton.ac.uk/ke17
• transferring thermal engineering expertise to optimise a powerstorage system with Highview Power; • providing knowledge engineering and artificial intelligence expertise to develop stock logistics and purchasing solutions for printer consumables recycler BCMY; and
CHILDREN WITH SPECIAL NEEDS by Victoria Tofts, BA (Hons), M.Ed., Special Education
support for the child. While this is a very positive development, here lie two of the key difficulties for both parents and schools. The first of these is the interpretation of the term
EN is a term that is used to describe a wide spectrum of difficulties and interpreted in as many different ways. Although schools have the SEN code of practice, there still remains a vast difference between provisions within and across local authorities. This inconsistency, however, remains largely unavoidable due to the complexity of SEN itself, the wide varieties of difficulties and conditions and the interpretation of such disabilities. This is probably not the answer that most parents will want to hear but what should be consistent is the widespread understanding that SEN can take many forms and is drawn from a huge spectrum of difficulty. The most important recent development for parents is that children with an EHCP, which is the new term for the old statements, will have this support plan until they are 25, legally binding any provision to provide appropriate
‘appropriate’ and the level of expertise of the person writing the support plan. The second being the use of acronyms and the way in which information is shared, or not shared, with parents. It is of utmost importance that parents familiarise themselves with the SEN code of practice - it is not the laborious read one might think. Schools need to share this with parents as a working document to demystify the lingo used in teaching and enable them to fully understand what their child is entitled to, no matter the level of SEN. I have worked in schools now for over ten years; in SEN for just over six, in both primary and secondary mainstream schools, fully special schools and in mainstream schools with resource units attached My current role is in the latter and I find it to be an excellent way of providing support for children with SEN. I have been both for and against special schools throughout my time in education and have concluded that all types of provision currently available have a place dependent on the child.
These resource units enable children with a wide range of SEN to be included in mainstream schools as well as providing them with specialist support that they may not have access to in a solely mainstream school. This is also easier on the funding, dare I mention it, as children can share support and resources. Resources can then be pooled to enable the school to employ a team of qualified professionals. This will go some way to ensuring that interpretation of the needs of a child and the writing of ‘appropriate’ support plans are no longer a cause for concern for both teachers and parents. The term appropriate, while necessary to use, can then be done so with more accuracy for individual children. The debate should no longer reign about whether special or mainstream schools are appropriate for children with SEN but the two can easily be combined and are being done so in many schools already. All parties would then surely be happier; the government with their funding, parents in their (correct) desire for inclusion and professionals being able to cooperate, working towards a joint goal.
Choose an MBA that recognises your ambitions and goals, and a university that supports, inspires and challenges you. Choose the Sussex MBA.
FIND OUT MORE ABOUT THE SUSSEX MBA www.sussexmba.com mba@ sussex.ac.uk +44 (0)1273 873522
Halloween Ball Saturday 28th October 2017 The Grand Hotel Brighton, 6.30pm ue ut on a uniq o s is m ’t n e Do o bid on on t y it n u t r o opp lusive mini of two exc ! Snowdogs
Sumptuous dinner, auction, entertainment and dancing until late Dress code: Black-tie with a subtly spooky twist £80pp / £800 per table of 10 incl. VAT
email@example.com T: 01273 718785 www.themartlets.org.uk/Events
Registered Charity No. 802145
Generously sponsored by
JET-PROPELLED BUSINESS Martin Riley runs a successful leadership and business development company based in Bexhill. He has harnessed his years of experience in coaching to author an essential book on business planning, The Business Jet Engine. Ian Trevett met Martin to find out more about the insightful new book.
ith a background in product design and leadership coaching, Martin Riley is able to combine the skill sets from two very different industries to create an effective and unique business model - one that uses the metaphor of a jet engine. Presumably, Martin is a plane enthusiast or a wouldbe pilot? “I would love to fly a Spitfire, but I’m not a jet engine nerd. Quite simply, I always try to think of metaphors for how business works, partly to clarify it for myself but then even more so for my client. “I’m always looking for systems, patterns, and so it was just a concept. I’ve tried a few different ones and then this one started to emerge and stuck, and as I worked on it and evolved it, it stayed sound. “I like to provide a visual guide. When you’re doing a complex jigsaw it’s so much easier to do when you’ve got a picture on the box. It’s about knowing where each piece fits. “As I come from a design background, I am always thinking, “What’s a better tool? How can I make something complex simple and easy to use?” That’s my design mindset. Instead of taking objects it’s now around information. How do you take complex subjects like life, like leadership, like business and simplify it down so people can get a grasp of it quickly and use it immediately?” The book explains both tried and tested business principles and Martin’s own models in a succinct pleasing fashion. But the book isn’t meant to be picked up and browsed as bedtime easy reading. The book demands action and diagnosis of your company. So I ask Martin if readers need to work when they read the book “Well, they don’t have to!” he insists, “But that’s the intention. There are actions all the way through and I say “If you haven’t done this, you’ll need it for the next chapter”, because I want people to take action. It’s not just meant to be forgotten on a bookshelf.”
The format includes a series of questionnaires where readers are invited to score their business against carefully explained criteria. Martin explains, “It’s how we diagnose where the business is right now. What’s really important is that people can start at the simplest of levels. They can start with the simplest model, which has fewer questions, and get a good sense of what areas of the business they may be neglecting. It builds up through the book to help you diagnose your business in more and more depth.” The metaphor of a Jet Engine is an inspired choice and it makes for an interesting read. But don’t just read this book. Get involved and complete the tasks. It may just propel your business to another level.
The Business Jet Engine is out on 7th September and can be purchased from amazon.com. There is a complementary website www.businessjetengine.co.uk, which includes the tasks and activities as well as a lively blog.
PITCH AND PUTT FOR BUSINESS
Sonny Cutting gives us the lowdown on this year’s golf themed business expo.
ooking like he’s walked straight off the set of Harry Potter – though more recently actually walking off the set of the trailer for the 2017 Justice League - Greg Draven’s striking red beard and presence commands any room; his exquisite voice simply booms; his charm and wit demands attention; and his perfect comic timing creates inevitable smiles. Creator of Little Raven Media, our compere extraordinaire for Net XP’s events breathes even more life into the already pulsating themed trade shows, creating a comfortable ambiance and enjoyable connections with our business exhibitors and guests alike. Net XP’s brilliant sponsors also brings life to our events, with the large range of skills and expertise they bring to the table. Platinum Business Magazine, one of the most informative, appropriate and compelling business magazines out there, with pieces written by some of the most prominent business leaders and experts; Paper Plus UK, a leading provider of educational supply equipment in the South East. WorldPay, world leaders in the card payments market; Clear Water Safety Group, providing excellent business risk management advice to SME’s; 325 Productions UK, bespoke video production for promotion, training, music, and live event filming; Cleankill Environmental, awardwinning pest control services; and PileTech, leaders in underpinning, groundworks, piling and other civil engineering works. These companies not only have a wealth of information, but their willingness to share their knowledge and help to bring businesses together is proof of their dedication to helping businesses grow.
Greg Draven, Actor, Voice Actor & Compere - gregdraven.com
business related interactional trade show with an actual 9-hole mini golf course to engage with, and a whole host of enticing competitions and interactive prizes for both exhibitors and guests Dust off your clubs, and get your caddy on the move, for this expo is one you don’t want to miss. From 10am to 3pm at The King’s Centre, Burgess Hill, the top-quality conference venue is the perfect location, with free parking for all exhibitors and guests.
You can register as a guest on our website, www.netxp.co.uk ETC ETC Please register as a guest on our website today! Call us for event information on 0800 2545 666. Web: netxp.co.uk / Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Our September 7th golf themed business expo at Burgess Hill is Net XP’s second business exhibition of 2017. The event itself is part of the revolution against boring, conventional business trade shows, a rebellion against the ordinary and a strive towards the extraordinary side of networking! Networking that revives your business, networking that you don’t dread, networking that engages, encourages and excites. Expect a day of inspiring opening and closing keynote speakers, plenty of guests and businesses to talk to, but most importantly, expect a day of fun and games above par. Being an adult doesn’t mean you have to be boring! Embrace the possibilities of our unique golf themed
Born in South London, Sonny Cutting was a Brighton local from the age of 16 and has lived in Hurstpierpoint for the past 17 years. Today in the sleepy little village of Hurstpierpoint, he lives with his wife, Andrea and their fouryear old twins, Jack and Charlotte. Sonny is the managing director of Sussex Pages, The Business Marketing Network, a local digital marketing company which he set up after leaving BT as a new media specialist after eight years of service.
K N O C KO U T
F RI DAY
P RO U D LY
TABLES OF 10
Featuring guest speaker
Bob Wilson, OBE Legendary Arsenal and Scotland goalkeeper and former TV broadcaster
LONDON GATWICK AIRPORT
Special Guest Speaker Bob Wilson, OBE
Annual Sporting Charity Lunch
COMPLIMENTARY DRINKS RECEPTION 3 COURSE MEAL WITH COFFEE RAFFLE CHARITY AUCTION
In aid of
TO BOOK CONTACT RYAN HEAL: Hosted by MC Aaron James
01273 330044 1967 - 2017
British Airways i360
A FEAST FOR THE EYE West Beach Bar & Kitchen is now open at British Airways i360, with décor, atmosphere and menus which celebrate the “unique spirit” of Brighton and Hove.
est Beach Bar & Kitchen is now open at British Airways i360 on Brighton seafront, offering a fun and unique dining experience which celebrates this vibrant city by the sea.
West Beach Bar & Kitchen is a stylish all-day seafront venue which is zoned into four distinct areas - a restaurant offering dishes inspired by Brighton; a lounge bar serving cocktails and other drinks; a café serving coffee, afternoon tea and cakes; and a secluded area for groups. The interior is designed by the award-winning creators of British Airways i360, Marks Barfield Architects. Colourful local art adorns the walls thanks to a partnership with Gallery 40 in North Laine, and Brighton neon artist Andy Doig has created a bespoke piece for the lounge bar area inspired by the murmurating starlings above the old West Pier. West Beach Bar & Kitchen is right on Brighton beach and offers one of the best views of the city’s much-loved West Pier. The new décor is inspired by the colours of the sea, beach, pier and sky. Timber table tops are a nod to the timbers out on the beach while colourful upholstered seating adds softness and comfort. Head Chef Alan Parker said: “Brighton and Hove is home to an eclectic mix of interesting people and alternative lifestyles which provide an endless source of inspiration for our chefs, encouraging us to be playful with our culinary creations and not be constrained by any single style. We are also passionate about showcasing the finest local ingredients and creating delicious dishes that can be enjoyed with
friends, while they savour the stunning views of the sea and the old West Pier.” Dishes include modern takes on seaside favourites such as ‘Panko Crumbed Catch of the Day’ with seasoned chips and lemon salt; alongside fun sharing dishes such as ‘Beside the Seaside Brighton Bucket’ with mussels, cockles and langoustines steamed in cider cream sauce; and ‘Melting Jaffa Pudding’ with zingy orange syrup and melted chocolate lava. The bar serves delicious cocktails and a range of locally sourced drinks including Nyetimber award-winning sparkling wine, Harvey’s Ale, Brighton Gin and Wobblegate juices. British Airways i360 Executive Director Steve Bax said: “Customers tell us they enjoy popping into our restaurant for coffee, afternoon tea or pre-dinner cocktails, as much as they love coming here for a family meal or a special group dinner. So, we have zoned the space accordingly and given each area its own individual atmosphere. The results are spectacular. “West Beach Bar & Kitchen is open all day, from weekend brunch through to evening cocktails and dinner, and is set to become a new landmark in stylish seafront dining.” West Beach Bar & Kitchen is run in partnership with specialist catering and events company, Heritage Portfolio, which has numerous venues across the UK.
SUCCESS IN SUSSEX It’s your last chance to enter the 29th Sussex Business Awards 2017
he deadline for the county’s leading awards scheme is fast approaching and Platinum Business readers have until Wednesday 6th September to enter. Since they launched in 1989, the awards have built a reputation as one of the most important events in the business calendar. Recognising business excellence across Sussex, these prestigious awards are widely considered to be ‘the one to win’. Now in their 29th year, the awards are the longest established business award scheme in the county, and in the country! Yelo Architects was the winner of last year’s ‘Award for Professional Services’. Managing director, Andy Parsons, comments: "Winning the award has been extremely rewarding for Yelo and helped to further raise our profile as one of the leading architecture practices in Sussex. It's great for our staff to receive recognition for their dedication and the quality service they provide to our clients, and the whole experience was topped by a fantastic awards evening!" There are 17 trophies to be won with awards for all-round excellence, as well as for those businesses demonstrating special strengths in areas such as innovation, customer service, professional services and entrepreneurs. The scheme welcomes three new sponsors this year - HARE, a future-focused technology consultancy whose CEO, Chris O’Hare, was last year’s winner of the ‘Sussex Graduate of the Year’. Legal and General, previous winners
Last year’s entertainment
Last year’s winners of the ‘Healthiest Workplace Award’ return to judge this award themselves and a brand new sponsor, The Goodall Foundation, will be judging the ‘Responsible Business Award’.
Coffin Mew, Sussex Chamber of Commerce, Vantage Professional Risks, The Argus, Heart FM, Title Sussex, Gemini Print, Midnight Communications and Platinum Business.
Last year’s winner was Lovelocaljobs. Managing director, Gary Peters says: “Winning the SBA award was the icing on the cake after a genuinely amazing year, with so much hard work across the team and so deserved. The fact that we were voted for by some of Sussex's most prestigious businesses, and then applauded by so many friends and clients made it even more special. Thank you for the support SBA team, keep up the amazing work!”
Still wondering whether to enter? Opun Software was last year named the ‘Most Promising New Business’. What has winning an award meant to them?
Legal & General, HARE, and The Goodall Foundation join returning sponsors which include HSBC, Mazars, Checkatrade.com, Sussex Innovation Centre, University of Sussex,
“Winning ‘Most Promising New Business’ proved to be a watershed moment in the business’ life,” says Opun’s John Cushing. “We have doubled our sales and are on course to double again. We’ve won a further five national awards, increased our operating area and started to receive attention from international brands wishing to partner with us. Would I recommend entering? Absolutely!” To view this year’s categories and download an entry form, visit www.sbawards. org.uk. Businesses can enter up to three categories. There is a small admin fee of £50 (excl vat) to enter one award or £100 (excl vat) for up to three entries. You can also make nominations for the Healthiest Workplace, Most Sustainable Business and Outstanding Contribution to Sussex Charity, free of charge.
Winners will be announced at The Grand Brighton on 30th November 2017 and all finalists receive one free place! For further information, visit www.sbawards.org.uk.
BRIGHTON AND HOVE BUSINESS AWARDS The Shortlist
ome of the Brighton’s biggest and best – and youngest and newest – make the 33 businesses shortlisted for 15 awards in this year’s Brighton and Hove Business Awards. One company made the list more than three times - Work the World - whilst another eight are on the shortlist twice. Awards will also be made to the person who, in the judges’ opinion, has done the most for Brighton – the Outstanding Brightonian – and an overall Judges’ Choice award for The Best Business in Brighton. Commenting on the shortlist Fiona Shafer, chair of the judges, said: “Brighton & Hove has got a lot to shout about and there’s no better platform than the BAHBAs. “The entries seem to cover every aspect of business life from creative digital services to hospitality and an impressive array of community projects. Few other places in the country can boast such a range of businesses let alone the quality that we have seen on this year’s shortlist.” The awards are supported by the Big Lemon, B&H Chamber of Commerce, Gemini Print, Brighton Business Curry Club, Brighton & Hove City Council and Brighton & Hove Tourism Alliance. Juice 107.2 FM, Platinum Business Magazine and Title Sussex join The Argus as media sponsors. The awards will be presented at Proud Country House, Stanmer Park, on Thursday 14th September. Each winner will receive a year’s free membership to MDHUB, a vibrant and energising membership organisation that supports business owners through the challenges of growing and developing their business and where successes are shared and celebrated in a confidential environment.
Tickets can be purchased online at www.bahba.co.uk.
2017 FINALISTS Hospitality, Leisure & Tourism Sponsored by Red7 Brighton Palace Pier Isaac At Saltdean Lido The Salt Room
The Award for Best Customer Service Sponsored by Yelo Architects The Big Lemon CIC Bluebird Tea Co. Work the World
The Award for Best Independent Retailer Sponsored by Churchill Square The Book Nook Bluebird Tea Co. Posh Totty Designs Present in the Laine
The Award for Business Beyond the City Sponsored by Brighton & Hove Chamber of Commerce Madgex Ticketmedia Work the World
The Award for Business in The Community Sponsored by City Cabs HOP Consulting Ltd LoveLocalJobs.com Search Seven Ltd
The Best Event in The City Sponsored by Juice 107.2 FM Brighton Fringe Impact Initiatives Martlets Hospice
The Best New Kids on the Block Sponsored by Healys Circulate Digital
Isaac At PLATF9RM Saltdean Lido
The Best Place to Work Sponsored by Graves Jenkins Haybury Magenta Associates Mooncup Ltd
The Creative Industries Award Sponsored by Martin Searle Solicitors Cobb Digital Koru Architects Ticketmedia
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The closing date for entries and nominations is 28th September 2017, so hurry and enter now! The Business Women Excellence Awards 2017 Sussex edition stretches across the whole of the county and are staged specifically to celebrate the success of today’s very best females in all aspects of the business world. Whether we like it or not, many companies today still remain male dominated despite the obvious progress that has been made over the years to change that. The Sussex Business Women company and multi award-winning These awards seek to highlight the best business women and the best The Sussex Business Women company and multi award-winning Excellence Awards 2017 is preparing entrepreneur, business lawyer and businesses which are owned or co-owned by women, run by them, or business lawyer and Excellence Awards 2017 is preparing entrepreneur, for a bigger and even more exciting author of the inspirational bestseller women working within them. From the amazing number of entries and over the years, that many awards programmes have been designed to for a bigger and even more exciting author of the inspirational bestseller event this year. We arereceived already ‘The Revolution’, said: nominations that we have so far, it’s looking book like year twoFreedom of highlight and recognise event this year. We are already book ‘The Freedom Revolution’, said: their exceptional skills and talents.” receiving wonderful email “It’s fantastic to see so many talented these awardsmany is going to be inspiring.
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What’s happening on 25th May 2018? • It’s Julian Clary’s 58th birthday • It’s 41 years since Star Wars was released • GDPR replaces the current DPA Cause for celebration all round? Maybe – but certainly, cause for preparation – and we don’t mean saving up to buy Julian Clary’s dog a diamante collar. So – there’s less than a year to go and it makes absolute business sense to ‘Be Prepared’, exactly as the scout motto says. Don’t subscribe to lastminute.com; you’ll only regret it. And what does GDPR stand for? General Data Protection Regulation, which replaces the Data Protection Act (DPA). In brief, the GDPR concerns the rights people have over their personal data. The DPA has become outdated since technology has progressed so rapidly in the past few years and so much business is carried out online. The new regulations aim to streamline data protection across Europe so that, no matter which country you trade with, or in which country your data is held, there’s consistency in the way data is handled. Helpful for
businesses. Reassuring for individuals. By the way, the fact that we are in the process of leaving the EU makes no difference because the GDPR applies to every business which holds or processes the data of EU citizens. If we want to trade in Europe then we will be obliged to show that UK standards are equivalent to the EU’s GDPR framework. Additionally, GDPR will become mandatory in the UK so even if you don’t trade overseas, it will apply to you. There’s plenty to be getting on with in the meantime, meticulously outlined by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO). Here are five things you could put on your To Do List in the next few weeks. 1.
Appoint a data protection officer – crucial. It’s vital that someone takes the lead in this matter, otherwise there’s a danger it will be lost in the piles of other policies every company has to deal with. And, that someone should report to a board member or ideally be a board member.
2. Raise awareness – you may know about the impending change in regulations but do all the key decision-makers in your
company? 3. O rganise an information audit – unless you know the current personal data situation in your company (Whose data? Where from? How shared? To whom?) how can you possibly plan for the future? 4. Check procedures – do they cover the new rights individuals will have? 5. Plan timetable to amend privacy notices – make sure they will meet the new requirements in plenty of time for GDPR. Mailing Expert is a Sussex based Printing & Direct Marketing company; simply put we can print anything from a few Business Cards to tens of thousands of Flyers or Brochures. And, we can personalise and post them out to your clients, prospects, donors or members. We also offer a Design service as well as Leaflet Distribution and a full database & data cleaning service too. Mailing Expert has over 30 years’ experience within the industry. We take your data & data security seriously, that is why we all have the Award in General Data Protection Regulation from the IDM. Well that’s enough about us! T: 01825 983033. www.mailingexpert.co.uk
A DAY OUT WITH AUDI by Motoring Editor, Maarten Hoffmann
udi was born out of the foundation of Auto Union back in 1932 and the modern era Audi breathed life in the1960â€™s when Auto Union was acquired by Volkswagen from Daimler-Benz. The name Audi is the latin translation of the founder August Horch, horch meaning listen in German and Audi in Latin. Since then Audi has become one of the finest car makers in the world and with a The startling TT RS
fair few icons along the way, such as the Audi Quattro world-beating rally car, the R8 V10 and the awesome RS6 Avant that was my Platinum Car of the Year in 2015. Their commitment to four-wheel drive across the range continues unabated and has left many other manufacturers scrabbling to catch up. To gauge how the company is faring in 2017, l joined them for a Range Driving Day at Walton Hall, a 16th century mansion in
Warwickshire that was once owned by Danny La Rue of all people, after being used as a code breaking centre aligned to Bletchley Park during the war. The weather was perfect, the scenery was glorious and there was the entire Audi range arrayed before me on the sweeping driveway of the house. It does not get much better than this.
Motoring The fearsome R8
This was also the first test shoot day for the new Platinum YouTube channel and l had to be on my best behaviour. My tendency is always to head towards anything with an R in front of it and as l turned to survey the scene of gleaming metal, the cameraman came up to me swinging the keys to a shiny new R8 V10 Plus Spyder that he thought l might like to drive first. He was right.
Audi have done a sterling job with just about every model and managed to plug the gap in every sector. Sales are strong with 14,344 models sold in 1991 against 177,304 models sold in 2016 giving them a 6.4% UK market share (BMW 6.3%, Mercedes 5.52%) with the A3 being the 8th best selling car. Their 2015 revenue was €58.42 billion. So much so that Audi’s rising market share is getting dangerously close to Volkswagen’s and a brand is not meant to outsell its volume parent. What a very pleasant problem to have. The entire range could be called handsome with not a lemon in sight and a few absolute stunners in there. Buyers will select based on their personal preferences and pocket of course but it has to be said that the vehicle they would receive will be technologically advanced, impressively built, great to drive and one the safest vehicles out there with tremendous residual value. The svelte A5 Coupe
Then the new A5 Cabriolet, then the S3, then the Q7, then the R8 V10 hard top - l tell you, this reviewing lark is a lot tougher than it seems. After lunch and with the camera still rolling, we dialled it down a tad with the A1, A4 and then they asked me to try the new TT RS Roadster. Well, rarely am l short for words but good god, this is a revelation. Quite how they extract such speed out of a 2.5-litre engine defies all common sense. 62mph arrives in 3.7 very frantic seconds and the grip is eye-watering whilst the cornering G-Force tends to rip your face off. Over a very nice lunch, l sat with the crew and asked them their layman’s view of Audi. To a man, they were hugely positive about the range, their reputation and the cred of having the badge. Perhaps in the distant past Audi might of played third fiddle to the corporate badge cred of Mercedes and BMW but no more. The cameraman also moaned a tad about trying to film in the passenger seat of the TT at 110 on a tight corner but l couldn’t hear him, and cared little, as l smiled like a man possessed and wiped the gnats off my teeth!
It all starts with the A1 at £16,965.00 up to the R8 Spyder at £132,020.00 and everything in between. Audi have one of the most comprehensive and competent ranges of any manufacturer in production today and not to miss a technological beat, their range of e-tron electric or hybrid engines are charging into production. Along with other manufacturers, they have a joint plan underway to build a high-power charging network across Europe. The future looks bright. Vorsprung durch Technik
The awesome RS6 Avant
The mighty Audi Quattro S1
FORM AN ORDERLY by Motoring Editor, Maarten Hoffmann
he Audi Q5 has been with us since 2008 and l rather liked it from the off. This 4-wheel drive SUV offered everything required of a car and proved that an SUV really can drive just like a car but with a high ride height, oodles of load space and off-road capabilities, it trumped most of the competition. I first reviewed the 3-litre version back in 2013 on a trip to Bath and it won me over. Since then we have the Q2, Q3 and Q7 so l guessed it worked for them too.
The interior is beautifully laid out and here we have the virtual cockpit again that l am a huge fan off as the entire dash can be transformed into the SatNav map
I thought it quick enough but when they offered me the SQ5 and l thought it rude to refuse. The S and RS versions of the Audi range are all winners but to put this much power into such a high car might be deemed irresponsible but then l do love being irresponsible. They have nicked the engine from the S4 and S5, namely a 3.0-litre single turbo V6
controlled by an eight-speed auto box. It develops 345bhp and hurray, they only offer it in the petrol version - for now. It’s good for 0-62 in 5.4 seconds and it appears a lot quicker than that. Pop the box into S and dial up dynamic mode and it flies off the line and surges, without breath, to the limited top speed of 155mph, and will give the Merc GLC43, Porsche Macan Turbo and BMW X5M a good run for their money. Click through Auto and into Dynamic, and you may wonder what has happened to the reserved V6 you were previously listening to – because the SQ5’s audio speakers start filtering greater and greater levels of ‘engine sound modulation’ into the cabin. We could do without the fake quad exhausts as well but l guess they float someones boat somewhere. l would prefer honesty that does not take us back to the 70’s when every boy racer was fitting huge fake exhausts to their 1.2 Escort’s to impress people that are impressed by such tosh. Then they would drill holes into the box to make it sound better. The interior is beautifully laid out and here we have the virtual cockpit again that l am a huge fan of as the entire dash can be transformed into the SatNav map and, with a very able and non-intrusive head up display, it is supremely set up for long-distance travel.
The quilted leather is supple, the adaptive cruise control works well, the panoramic roof is enormous, the Bang & Olufsen system fills the cabin and it is just very, very well put together.
Stability is surprisingly good for such a high car and it gives you confidence to chuck it around
Stability is surprisingly good for such a high car and it gives you confidence to chuck it around although in Sport mode, the steering becomes a tad lifeless and the feedback is minimal. It works best is Auto mode and let the computers sort everything else out. I think the SQ5 is the perfect all-round car and the range is excellent. If you want a smaller one, go for the Q2 or Q3, Larger, go for the Q7. It is very quick if you want it to be, it will load half a house, will keep going in the rain and snow, allows a view over all other non-SUV cars and is a joy to sit in and a breeze to drive and, at under £50,000, it is a lot of car for the money. I would certainly have one.
TECH STUFF Model tested: SQ5 3.0 TFSI quattro Engine: 3-litre, turbo V6 Power: 345 bhp Performance: 0-62 5.4 seconds Top: 155 mph Economy: 34 mpg combined Price from: £49,715.00 As tested: £62,405.00
Diesel engines definitely have a future.
Ultra Low Emission Zone & Congestion charging
Diesel Scrappage Scheme 2017 - Proposals NO
No confirmed diesel scrappage plan.
The Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) is an area within Central London which will require all vehicles to meet exhaust emission standards (ULEZ standards) or pay an additional daily charge to travel
The ULEZ will operate 24 hours a day, 7 days a week within the same area as the current Congestion Charging Zone (CCZ), and was planned to come into force in September 2020, however, it’s now proposed to launch earlier, in April 2019
Diesel vehicles that have been type approved as Euro 6 already meet ULEZ emissions standards
Scheme would Initial trial of10 cities before possible nationwide rollout. Scheme could be brought in within two years.
15,000 Euro1-5 diesel & Euro 1-3 petrol vehicles, out of 37 million cars on the road, may be replaced. Government scheduled to unveil ‘Clean air zone’ plans by 31st July 2017. EU6 diesel engines not planned to face penalty zone charges.
Our modern diesel-engined cars would not be affected by this draft scheme which targets older vehicles fitted with technology that has been replaced.
• This includes every new Mercedes-Benz car on sale today
Mercedes-Benz has invested €3 billion in the development and production of a completely new diesel engine family. This new family of engines embodies over 80 years of Mercedes-Benz diesel know-how. It marks the start of an engine family that achieves new benchmarks in terms of efficiency, emissions and environmental compatibility. All of our current engines feature the cleanest technology we’ve ever used. Latest diesel engines - 13% better fuel consumption and CO2 emissions than predecessor engines
All current Mercedes-Benz Cars meet Euro 6 standards
Euro 6 is the sixth incarnation of the European Union directive to reduce harmful pollutants from vehicle exhausts
Mercedes-Benz of Basingstoke Mercedes-Benz of Poole
0330 0190378 84 www.sandown-group.co.uk
Mercedes-Benz of Hindhead Mercedes-Benz of Guildford
Mercedes-Benz of Dorchester Mercedes-Benz of Salisbury
eat have never attempted an SUV before but good lord, it seems like they have been at it for years. This is a very good looking car with excellent lines.
As Seat is owned by VW, it will come as no surprise that it looks a tad like the Tiguan and that’s no bad thing. The attempt, of course, is to steal the crown of the Nissan Qashqai that has dominated this sector for quite some time and l think they have done a sterling job. There is a choice of engines from 1.4 to 2.0 offering 150bhp and 187bhp respectively and comes with 2-wheel and 4-wheel drive. The interior is well finished and laid out and has that familiar VW whiff about it. The infotainment screen works well and options include LED headlights, surround-view cameras and radar cruise which, at crawling speed in traffic, will accelerate, brake and steer with zero input from the driver - so a good kip is in order then!
It is the Auto Express Crossover of the Year and the What Car Best Small SUV and l am sure there are further accolades to come.
The entry level 1.0-litre turbo petrol really does not have the puff required but, unless you need 4WD, the hot model will be the 150bhp 1.4 turbo petrol that will give you all the pep you need and feels light and lively and is actually great fun to drive. It’s stable when you chuck it around, with minimum roll. The 4WD versions come with a different
TECH STUFF Model tested: Ateca Xcellence 1.4 EcoTSI Engine: 1.4-litre 6-speed Power: 150 bhp Performance: 0-62 mph 8.5 seconds Top speed: 125 mph Economy: 52.3 mpg combined Price from: £18,340.00 As tested: £25,300.00 suspension and is therefore more precise but you will suffer from carrying around that extra weight and it’s no livelier than the 1.4. This is a very important car for the Spanish company and they have a lot riding on it therefore it is with great fortune and, no doubt, a lot of hard work that they have hit the jackpot with a car that’s great to look at, fun to drive, built to last and comes in at a highly competitive price, with the entry model starting at only £18,340. It is the Auto Express Crossover of the Year and the What Car Best Small SUV and l am sure there are further accolades to come. Seat global sales are up 13.7% over 2016 and this makes it one of the fastest growing brands in Europe. If you are thinking of joining the herd and buying a Qashqai, don’t! The Ateca will outdo it in just about every arena, is cheaper and more fun and, best of all, you can pronounce the name of the bloody thing!
s Brig b a h yC
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THE MUD RUN Over 150 people got muddy for Chestnut Tree House in new charity event, Operation: MUD.
n Sunday 9th July, over 150 people headed just north of the SussexSurrey border to take on a brand new challenge for Chestnut Tree House children’s hospice - Operation: MUD. Set on one of the muddiest assault courses in the UK, the 5km route at Henfold Lakes was packed full of challenges from start to finish, with over 60 man-made and natural obstacles. Men and women aged from 16 to 60 navigated the muddy obstacle course climbing walls, clambering through tunnels and under nets, swinging on ropes and jumping into muddy bogs - all to raise money for Chestnut Tree House. Participants ranged from individuals and groups of friends, to clubs and corporate teams, including Assurity Consulting, CDS Electrical, Collider, GL Property, Parks Letting and Tandy UK Servers. Everyone set off at 11am and Steve O’Rourke was the first to pass the finish line, after just 49 minutes. Steve, a team leader at Paxton Access Ltd, signed up for the event to support Chestnut Tree House, which is his company’s ‘Charity of the Year’. Nicky Torricelli and her team, ‘The Outdoor Addicts’ signed up for the event to raise money for the charity, which currently supports her and her family. Speaking just before joining the start line, Nicky Torricelli said: “My daughter has been going to Chestnut Tree House since it opened almost 15 years ago. She’s now 18 and they’ve supported us absolutely brilliantly through all that time. I’m part of a boot-camp group called The Outdoor Addicts and they’ve got behind me wholeheartedly to support Chestnut Tree House today. We’ve raised over £1,000 already, with more to come, and we’re looking forward to getting really muddy!”
Hugh Lowson, CEO of Chestnut Tree House was at the start line, and spoke about the work the charity does and the importance of events like Operation: MUD, to raise both funds and awareness in the local community. Once everyone set off, Hugh, armed with a super-soaker, headed out on the course to cheer people on at various muddy obstacles.
provided by Chestnut Tree House.
Kerry O’Neill, Events and Campaigns Fundraiser for Chestnut Tree House said: “This is the first time we have put on Operation: MUD and we were delighted with the turn out, over 150 people signed up for the event to raise money for us.
Chestnut Tree House provides care and support to around 300 children with lifeshortening conditions and their families across East Sussex, West Sussex and South East Hampshire. The cost of providing this vital service is over £3.5 million per year, yet the hospice receives less than 7% central government funding so relies heavily on the support of the local community to continue providing vital care to local children and families.
“We need to raise £6,850 each day to pay for all the specialist care services provided by Chestnut Tree House - both at the hospice and in families’ own homes, which makes events like this invaluable as we rely heavily on the generosity and support of the local community. Sponsorship money is still coming in but we hope to raise around £20,000, which will cover three days of all care services
“We would like to thank everyone who took part in our first ever Operation: MUD, as well as the supporters and volunteers who helped out. We are also extremely grateful to our digital and design sponsors, Collider and Ingenious, who really captured the spirit of the event for us.
Find out about future events and how you can support Chestnut Tree House at www.chestnut-tree-house.org.uk
And so to food By Amanda Menahem
The Pascere Counter
have eaten out quite a bit this month as evidenced by the cancellation of my Abel and Cole box and the frequency with which I am having to discard bags of
salad these days. But this is not because of some suddenly lavish lifestyle. Hell no quite the opposite. Pascere opened its doors on the 3rd July and in those early weeks I was waitressing and hosting most nights. Even now I am often at the restaurant talking to customers and listening to feedback, seeing what sells, seeing what customers are particularly enjoying so that I can tweak and refine the offering over time. This is proving invaluable and fascinating since I am also learning about the constraints of being able to offer what customers want and the complications of running a restaurant. But thatâ€™s a whole other story. So my eating habits have had to change. Dinner is at about 4 or 5. For a quick but delicious bite I can often be found at Riddle and Finn in the lanes for the smoked salmon and blinis, or the salmon and avocado tartare with caviar and dill crĂ¨me fraiche (wonderful) or the pan-fried squid or calamari, both perfectly cooked and always superb, the squid yielding and soft. These are always accompanied by a glass of Pol Roger, my go to champagne of choice (of the large houses).
Table Talk Alternatively, if I’m in a real rush Moshimo has provided me with mounds of sashimi and seaweed plucked off the counter in the ultimate exemplification of fast food. Speaking of fast food, one word, LEON. Seriously, it’s good. Fresh, healthy delicious boxes of food. I love their superfood salad, a medley of broccoli, quinoa, peas, feta and avocado, to which I often add the chargrilled chicken which is beautifully charred thigh meat, much more flavoursome than breast. The falafel is also excellent served with roasted red peppers and a tahini dressing. Of course, on the odd occasion I have decided to dine at Pascere one of the best nights was an impromptu evening spent at the counter overlooking the open kitchen watching our chefs at work while I enjoyed the lamb breast and a glass of my current favourite red Sangiovese (ok, two glasses). What a great way to dine alone but not alone. So dear readers, next month I promise you I will get out and about to bring you some critique of Sussex dining… after all there is so much going on in the food scene of Sussex.
EDITORS NOTE: The question has long been asked can a poacher turn gamekeeper? According to the Guardian, the answer is yes. Their head food writer, Marina O’Loughlin visited our intrepid reviewers new restaurant Pascere undercover last week and has just published a stunning review entitled ‘This is no-messing brilliance’. Search for the Guardian Pascere review August 11th to see what l mean. Bravo Amanda.
Table Talk REVIEW
The Hydro Hotel by Amanda Harrington
on a warm, late spring day was
treatments in the Five Elements Spa and there
is a hair salon on the ground floor adding to the relaxation of a beautiful hotel in a
well-furnished with two sofas. There was a
this magnificent Victorian building looked
stunning setting. The entrance lobby and
large bowl of fruit on the coffee table and
splendid in the bright sunshine – it really is
ground floor areas retain an old-fashioned
a small table well-stocked with plenty of tea
a glorious spot. Situated further west than
charm with gothic columns merging with
and coffee-making supplies. Oh, and a copy of
the main seaside attractions of Eastbourne,
wood paneling while the newer conservatory
ACES magazine which was a lovely surprise.
it enjoys a more peaceful location and l must
area, where you can take afternoon tea, is
say it is all the better for it. Eastbourne might
bright and airy and overlooks the beautiful
not be a noisy town but there is nothing worse
lawn at the rear of the hotel.
rriving at the Hydro Hotel, Eastbourne,
Perched high on a hill overlooking the sea,
than being woken by slamming car doors,
Nowadays, the visitors can still enjoy
On arrival we were greeted by a very helpful
buses trundling around or pubs turning out in
and pleasant receptionist who dealt with our
check in and offered a porter facility to help us
The hotel’s name originates from the 19th Century, when it was a hydropathic
with our luggage.
to the west. You get the feeling that on a clear day you could see France. The suite’s lounge area was spacious and
The bedroom was large but felt even larger with the windows flooding sunshine into the room. I could get used to this. The bed was supremely comfortable and the bathroom was bright and airy. After settling into our room, we wandered down to the Conservatory to enjoy a glass or
We were guided to a sea-view suite on the
two of bubbles and the General Manager,
establishment treating patients in lavish
second floor that had large picture windows,
Jonathan Owen, came to welcome us and
surroundings, including baths, recreation
allowing us to enjoy an uninterrupted view of
regaled us with the future plans for the hotel.
rooms and the like.
the sea to the rear of the hotel and the cliffs
At the time of our visit, there was work in
can cater for many guests (the hotel has 82
progress to build a gazebo to the right of the
bedrooms, having recently completed a new
lawns which will accommodate private parties
third floor suite). The menu was extensive
in the comfortable bed and enjoyed a delicious
and will be licensed to hold weddings. I cannot
and varied and all the restaurant staff were
breakfast in the Crystal Restaurant the next
imagine a more beautiful setting for anyone
very polite and helpful, particularly Rosie,
morning. My full English was well cooked and
planning their special day.
the Restaurant Manager. Knowledge of the
very tasty and my husbandâ€™s poached eggs
menu is a bug bear for me but the staff were
were cooked exactly as he asked.
For businesses, the Hydro has a good range of meeting rooms that can cater to between
very well briefed and could answer all my
10 to 120 guests and there is a private dining
room for delegates. There is free, uncapped
After considering the options, we both opted
the Hydro. We both slept like contented logs that night
We had to leave fairly early as we had to be somewhere by mid-morning, but our stay at the Hydro was marvelous and bravo to
Wi-Fi and unrestricted parking. They have very
for the steak which was cooked to perfection.
Jonathan and all his wonderful staff. We will
competitive delegate packages, the details of
Having eaten rather well over the previous few
which can be found on their website at
days, one course was enough for us and we
decided to enjoy some of the sea air.
Dinner was served in the Crystal Restaurant
We finished the evening by having a
â€“ a very large elegant room with high ceilings
leisurely drink on the terrace as the sun went
and impressive chandeliers. The restaurant
down and reflected on a very pleasant day at
Photos this page by Ade Harrington ÂŠ
We look forward to visiting again one day to witness the improvements which are in the pipeline.
THE VIC TORIA TERR ACE BRUNCH
The Grand Brighton, 97-99 Kingâ€™s Road, Brighton, BN1 2FW 01273 224300 | email@example.com | www.grandbrighton.co.uk TheGrandHotelBrighton
What to drink in the Summer By Amanda Menahem Blanc is superb along with Ridgeview Bloomsbury and the much harder to find Rosé De Noir. If it must be champagne, then of the big champagne houses, Pol Roger is consistently fabulous.
hat to drink in the summer? The answer always depends on what I fancy, and what I’m eating (if l’m eating). The classic summer tipple is of course rosé and the obvious choice is from Provence but it’s easy to overlook other areas. At Pascere alongside a beautiful Provencal rosé we also serve a great Rioja, pale-pink, dry and fresh with subtle red fruit flavours and a pleasant creaminess. But if you want to stick to French then the South West region of Corbiére is also a good place to look for lovely easy drinking red as well as rosé. Look out for the gorgeous rosé from esteemed Chateau Haut Gleon full of red berry aromas, floral notes with a wonderful roundness and remarkable freshness in the finish. Rosé tends to stand up well to food, from salads, charcuterie and seafood and I have been known to drink it with light meat dishes such as chicken and pork. For me there are few pleasures in life greater than a glass of fizz in the sun. The La Vida al Camp Cava Brut (and Rosé) is a biodynamic beauty courtesy of local supplier Butlers. It is the best budget sparkling wine bar none in my opinion. I would sooner drink this than most champagne. Of the famous English sparklers, Court Garden Blanc de
For whites, Albarino is always a popular choice with food particularly good with fish and seafood. The Albarino has a crisp palate of citrus, grapefruit, and mandarin flavour with a saline finish. Fans of Pinot Grigio might want to look out for other northern Italian whites such as Ciu Ciu, an organic white from Le Cave De Pyrenne, which is a blend of 3 native grapes (Trebiano, Pecorino and Passerina). This is a crisp dry white almond-flecked white fruit with a zippy finish. Personally, if I’m drinking white, l am a big fan of Pinot Gris, a white Rioja (Le Cave’s Gran Cerdo is easy drinking on its own or with food) or a good white Cote Du Rhone usually a blend of several southern French grape varieties. It goes particularly well with fish but equally good on its own. For when I want a summer red, which I often do, especially if l’m at a barbecue or eating any kind of grilled or roasted chicken, then it must be a good Beaujolais or Pinot Noir and of course these vary greatly. If you are going to get Beaujolais, make sure it is one of the villages or cru for real quality. A good Beaujolais is savoury and herbaceous with real depth as opposed to the fruitier bubble gum examples you often find (which I also love). These wines go very well with pate, charcuterie as well as the aforementioned barbecued light meats. A good Pinot Noir is a perfect match for any kind of poultry and duck dishes as well as wild mushrooms and egg based dishes. French style / cool climates are less fruity and more savoury than their new world or warmer climate counterparts, so go with your personal preferences. Finally a red French Grenache pairs beautifully with more earthy salads such as beetroot goat cheese salad. Its fruity, light, smooth and well balanced. Just don’t make my mistake and drink sparkling wine as if it was beer. Note to self - sparkling wine is not a suitable thirst quencher….
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The Business Network
#HUDDLEDOWN IN EASTBOURNE By Emma Pearce, Marketing Consultant – marketing planning, outsourced marketing and social media training www.pearcemarketing.co.uk Emma Pearce reports back after attending Eastbourne’s first Creative Digital Technology mini conference
was intrigued when I received an invitation to Huddle in my email inbox. It turned out to be a Creative Digital Technology mini conference featuring three interesting sounding speakers as well as a bit of networking - but it was happening in Eastbourne. Yes, Eastbourne, rather than the rather more well established creative industry centres of Brighton and Hastings. As a digital marketer that works collaboratively with other creative and technical people and loves cloud technology, I was soon buying tickets for myself and a colleague. I’m glad we went - with about 70 other people it turned out. Eastbourne has some great people working on all manner of creative projects locally, nationally and across the globe. In fact, co-organiser Stuart Lambert from Cohub in Eastbourne, quoted figures from Nesta that said how Eastbourne is in the top 47 creative clusters in the UK. The town has 2,703 people from 969 businesses working in this sector. Alex Read from Bamb, co-organiser of the event, said “The aim of Huddle is to create a meaningful and credible community of creative, digital and tech workers.” Stuart, Alex and Rob Price from Deckchair Digital are aiming for Huddle to achieve a number of things: • Build a platform that shows local opportunities, vacancies, a talent list for the area and publicises applicable news • Host training and workshops, socials and conferences around the creative and tech sectors • Enable more collaboration and awareness for who is around and what they can offer • Lobby local authorities and bigger businesses to source locally • Show the might of collective talent and grow the local economy The first speaker was Nicholas Raeburn from Sky Iris Productions and
Vireal Media. He talked about passion projects and how they can work for you and your business. Once a year he tries to undertake a personal project with little or no budget. He decided to enter a film competition and without even knowing the result as yet, it has lead to him doing a piece of work for Elton John! He believes that you should ask yourself: “What would you love to do?” If you ever feel that you’re are losing your spark, then a passion project, where you do it for the love, will reignite your creativity. The second speaker was Donna Comerford who wears many hats including Education Coordinator for Brighton Digital Festival and Advisory Board Member at Tec Hub Eastleigh. She demonstrated, with fantastic success stories, how we should all seize the opportunity to collaborate between education, arts and creative digital industry firms. With a skills shortage and children (and adults) having a lack of insight into what local jobs there are in creative, tech and digital sectors, we should all do more to help educate. She encouraged everyone to speak to local teachers about giving talks. The final speaker was Ant Miller from Human Made who develop Wordpress websites for enterprise scale companies like Greenpeace and TechCrunch. He talked about empathy being the key ingredient to successful relationships between people involved on collaborative projects. He said that anything complicated, interesting and new needs partners to deliver value. There is a correlation between partnership and innovation. How you deal with a situation when the proverbial hits the fan will come down to practical empathy. His amusing and entertaining talk went down well. Congratulations to the Huddle team for a great first event in Eastbourne at the Royal Hippodrome Theatre. May this be the first of many activities. www.huddledown.com
SECURE YOUR BUSINESS IN SUSSEX
eading Kent and Sussex security and event management specialists in the leisure and entertainment industry have announced an imminent merger.
Marc-One Security and The Event Team merged on 1st June 2017. The new partnership will trade under the Marc-One Security banner. Founder and managing director of Marc-One Security, Marcus Redwood, has welcomed the merger with Aid Harrison (founder of The Event Team) who will be joining Marc-One Security as The Events Manager. Operations Manager for Sussex, Alan Sidders, believes the merger will combine one of the best security services companies and event management teams in the industry, creating an extensive range of specialist personnel, expertise and experience all under one roof. Marc-One Security is one of the leading security services companies in Kent and Sussex, delivering outstanding standard and bespoke security solutions for the last 27 years, including Door Supervision, Manned Guarding, Event Security and Dog Handling Teams. In addition, Marc-One Security has received several Police and Licensing authority commendations and won awards for pro-active door supervision and security services. Marc One sets and maintains exacting standards and pro-actively trains staff to ensure exceptional customer service.’ The Event Team has been delivering exceptional event management solutions throughout the south east for over 5 years. With a proven track record of expertise and professionalism, The Event Team provide everything from conception to completion including primary risk assessment, fully trained, accredited staff, event promotion and production to name but a few. The Event Team have close ties with several local and national accredited organisations. This unrivalled network, combined with a mass of experience, knowledge, attention to detail and customer service has enabled The Event Team to grow from strength to strength, their reputation gaining repeated bookings from the likes of X-Terra, Tri-Spirit Events, The London to Brighton Veteran Car Run, Cancer Research Run for Life, Chestnut Tree House and St Barnabas House Hospice Care as well as the majority of the community and charity event calendar in East Sussex.
www.marc-onesecurity.com and www.facebook.com/assistourevent
Tel: 0845 475 2151 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
FLETCHER BUSINESS SOLUTIONS
im Fletcher helped steer Marshall Tufflex to become a global business, having started as an accounts executive and worked up to being group Managing Director. He is now offering his skills, expertise and knowledge to fellow business people as a mentor via Edeal and Let’s Do Business.
He is a successful accounting and business professional with 40 years’ commercial experience and an outstanding record of strategy & business planning, developing leaders and helping firms grow and surpass sales, marketing & profitability goals. Both a committed team member and inspirational leader, Jim believes in creating the environment to allow people to succeed by sharing common goals. An accomplished communicator and respected advisor Jim offers top quality coaching, consultancy, non-executive directorship, interim and project management services across a full range of general management, finance, sales & marketing and operations functions. Jim has lived in East Sussex for over 30 years but his work has taken him across the UK and around the globe gaining knowledge and experience of importing, exporting and working with differing cultures.
Jim can be contacted on 07713 877238
Battle Chamber of Commerce www.battlechamber.org.uk
Bexhill Chamber of Commerce 01424 842892 www.bexhillchamber.co.uk
Crowborough Chamber of Commerce www.crowboroughchamber.co.uk
Eastbourne UnLtd Chamber of Commerce 01323 641144 www.eastbournechamber.co.uk
East Sussex County Council 01273 481570 www.eastsussex.gov.uk
Federation of Small Businesses 01424 754686 Reg Office: 01323 482018 www.fsb.org.uk/eastsussex
Hailsham Chamber of Commerce 01323 310531 www.hailshamchamberofcommerce.co.uk
Hastings Chamber of Commerce 01424 205500 www.hastingschamber.co.uk
Heathfield Chamber of Commerce 01435 865858 www.heathfieldchamber.co.uk
CELEBRATING A CELEBRANT
n our world today many people are developing their own ideas, values and beliefs about life, religion and philosophy and whilst traditional ceremonies will continue to play an integral part in community life, more people are seeking alternative approaches. Celebrants aim to reflect the wishes and desires of those seeking support. Westham-based Nuala Geary, a Celebrant and Member of the Fellowship of Professional Celebrants, says “It is truly an honour and my privilege to bring to individuals and families an alternative but yet still respectful and memorable occasion. So, if you are looking for someone to help deliver a Celebration of Life funeral service for a loved one, or to help create and deliver your unique wedding ceremony or to welcome a new addition into the family, then let me help you as a Celebrant. “I provide respectful and sensitive non-religious or semi-religious Funerals, Weddings and Baby Naming ceremonies and related services, like after dinner speaking, hosting events and officiating special celebrations.
email@example.com · www.celebrantplus.co.uk
utlands, a new national experimental music network will receive a £289,165 arts council strategic touring award for 2018-20
OUTLANDS is an innovative new national experimental music network bringing together a mix of visual arts and music organisations, independent venues, creative producers all located outside London. At a point where the experimental music scene is seen as risky for promoters, venues and audiences, this Arts Council Strategic Touring Award will support the network to inject quality, diversity and accessibility into new, engaging and ambitious music productions throughout the UK over a touring period of two years from 2018. OUTLANDS will commission and tour three productions a year alongside a participation programme adapted specifically to audiences local to each venue. Born of out of a desire to pool resources to ensure the survival of ambitious, diverse, high-quality music, the aim is to offer new experiences to audiences outside the capital, to work within a strong national network, and to boost the viability of ambitious, crossdisciplinary artforms across the whole country. Included in the OUTLANDS network is the De La Warr Pavilion in Bexhill-on-Sea. Stewart Drew, Director and CEO, De La Warr Pavilion says: “We are delighted that Arts Council England have supported OUTLANDS, a pioneering network of national partners that will support the commissioning of experimental music, whilst engaging and growing audiences for this innovative work. Over the last decade, we have changed our auditorium programme from loss-making traditional seaside entertainment into a thriving contemporary offer with a strong music programme. OUTLANDS allows us to take this a stage further by taking the lead in creating new partnerships that will allow us to take more artistic risks and to reflect the diversity of the communities at home and across the UK.”
We are very proud of our ACES magazine. Issue 4 has been distributed all over East Sussex. Make sure you pick up your copy. For more information about advertising and editorial sponsorship, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 07966 244046 and we have discounted members rates. The second issue is out now and in general distribution right around the region
The Institute of Directors 0207 766 8866 www.iod.com
Lewes Chamber of Commerce 07919 382316 www.leweschamber.org.uk
Locate East Sussex 0844 415 9255 www.locateeastsussex.org.uk
Newhaven Chamber of Commerce 0800 107 0709 www.newhavenchamber.co.uk
Peacehaven Chamber of Commerce 01273 586222 www.peacehavenchamber.co.uk
Seaford Chamber of Commerce 0800 881 5331 www.seafordchamber.co.uk
South East Local Enterprise Partnership 01245 431469 www.southeastlep.com
Uckfield Chamber of Commerce 01825 722607 www.uckfieldchamber.co.uk
Wealden District Council 01323 443322 www.wealden.gov.uk
For further information please contact Sally Ann Lycett at the De La Warr Pavilion on email@example.com.
EXCLUSIVE MEDIA SPONSOR
UPDATE YOUR OFFICE - NOW!
ussex businesses of all sizes now have a low cost, environmentally friendly route to kitting out their offices across the county. The Lord Lieutenant of East Sussex Peter Field and his wife recently opened the newly built office furniture showroom at Unit 2a, Britland Estate, Northbourne Road, Eastbourne for Now! Charity Group Ltd. The Lord Lieutenant first opened the building for the charity in November 2013 as a training centre, and congratulated everyone on the achievements of the charity in the interim period. He spent time meeting the trustees of the charity, the representative from the Catherine Cookson Trust (who funded the building work), the staff and volunteers who built the showroom and the invited guests. Petrina Mayson, the CEO of the charity, explained that the purpose of the showroom was to provide high quality office furniture and equipment to local businesses who were starting up, home offices or businesses which were expanding or just wanted to modernise their surroundings. The charity has numerous established donation supply routes in place with organisations such as Hastings Direct, Fieldskill Conquest and also works in partnership with local firm Posturite too.
Now! Charity Group Ltd provide high quality, low cost office furniture and equipment to local businesses who are starting up, home offices or businesses that are expanding or just wanting to modernise their surroundings.
This service also helps to reduce waste as thousands of tonnes of office furniture get dumped each year.
Why not pay their showroom a visit and set up your office for less! Unit 2a Britland Estate, Northbourne Road, Eastbourne, BN22 8PW. 01323 887199. Opening hours are: Monday – Friday 9am – 5pm. www.nowcharity.org.uk
The service supports the charity’s aim of reducing waste as thousands of tonnes of office furniture get dumped each year- yet purchasing it is one of the major costs of
setting up a business. With very low cost delivery charges and the knowledge your purchase is helping this local charity survive why not pay the showroom a visit. Ring them on 01323 887199 for further details or visit between 9am and 5pm Monday to Friday.
Growing Your Business Internationally Sussex Chamber of Commerce is working in partnership with East Sussex County Council to bring you 4 key International Trade events. Be prepared to learn about new opportunities in high growth emerging markets and the export support you can access to help your business grow internationally. These events will give you practical advice, invaluable resources and the contacts needed to grow your business, and begin the next step of your export journey. Following a recent survey these events have been tailored to suit businesses needs. Whether you’re a novice and looking at the export markets or an expert and wish to explore new markets, our events will help you take your business to the next level. There will be lively panel discussions, informative updates and of course plenty of time for networking. DO YOU WANT TO GROW YOUR BUSINESS IN EXPANDING MARKETS?
Attend our business events and you can expect to: • • •
Learn about the opportunities in high growth markets Be better equipped to break down barriers Be better prepared to expand your business
Upcoming Events Implications of Brexit on International Trade
Date: Friday 8th September 2017 Venue: Hastings Centre, Hastings E-commerce Worldwide
Date: Monday 6th November 2017 Venue: Buxted Park, Uckfield International Payment Security
Date: Wednesday 17th January 2018 Venue: The View, Eastbourne Logistics & Freight Forwarding
Date: Tuesday 6th March 2018 Venue: Dale Hill Golf Club, Wadhurst
All events will take place from 8am to 11am. Fee £10.00 + VAT. To book your place please call the office on 01444 259 259 and speak to the membership team.
100Further information - www.sussexchamberofcommerce.co.uk/events
By Dianne Lambdin, Director of CCCI and The Sussex HR Hub
he discord arising from events in politics made me reflect on how we treat each other in business. Take good manners for example. One could easily believe they are outdated – something from a bygone era. However, whether we’re talking about good manners or business etiquette, there are qualities we aspire to as individuals, for example, honesty and reliability, that should reflect on how we treat our colleagues and customers. Despite the ‘informality’ trend in business (which isn’t necessarily a bad thing), ‘tardiness’ and ‘not saying thank you’ rank as most annoying amongst people I know. So, it would seem, manners are important, especially in business. Generally, we want the people we do business with to be polite, courteous people who do those things because we appreciate those things ourselves. We like it when someone thanks us for our advice, or when a colleague takes our calls so we can focus on other things. A ‘thank you’ from a stranger has even greater impact because it’s unexpected, but these generous acts are increasingly rare. However, when ‘thanks’ are impersonal or become common practice, we don’t tend to appreciate them. Most drivers are courteous, for instance, acknowledging when another driver has given way, but we hardly notice this because it happens all the time. Try giving a ‘thumbs up’ – this will take some drivers by surprise but
FREE BUSINESS SUPPORT
I can assure you it will put a smile on their face! As business leaders, it’s important to think about how we communicate with our customers, and how we thank them. Is it meaningful or has it become part of an impersonal process? Just like the politician’s sound-bite. When was the last time someone said thank you, and I mean really thanked ‘you’? We learn as children to display common courtesy, but we get busy with life and tend to forget the rules. Then we hear ourselves saying,“whatever happened to good manners?” If courtesy and good manners are essential tools in business, shouldn’t we put as much effort into being decent as we do into being noticed?
CHICHESTER BUSINESS MAGAZINE
Coast to Capital’s Business Navigator Growth Hub is a free and impartial service that offers all businesses, from pre-starts to large businesses, information, advice and guidance, necessary to help grow your business. CCCI is proud to be one of the Business Navigator partners. If you’re looking to expand or grow your business, invest in a new project, or diversify, there are a few business grants available, (subject to eligibility and your requirements meeting the funders’ criteria). Search the Business Navigator website for grants and funding available in the Chichester district. Visit www.c2cbusiness.org.uk for a simple four click process.
JOIN CHICHESTER CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY FROM JUST £99 Membership benefits include: • Events and networking • Policy and public affairs • Workshops and training • Business advice and services • New business opportunities Join us now at www.chichestercci.org.uk/join
The latest edition of our bi-annual magazine is out now, with information on our events for September to December, business news, advice and updates from CCCI. You can view a digital copy at www.chichestercci. org.uk/chichester-business or contact the Chamber office to request a printed version.
Award winning business, tax and wealth advice To find out more about the full range of accountancy, business advisory and financial services that help our clients achieve their business and personal goals, please contact:
Bryan Elkins, Partner, Horsham office T: +44 (0)1403 253 282 E: firstname.lastname@example.org Shirley Smith, Partner, Gatwick office T: +44 (0)1293 776 152 E: email@example.com
Offices across London, Sussex and Kent www.krestonreeves.com 102
WORTHING & ADUR
SOMETHING BIG IS COMING
The Better Business Show is back for 2018!
fter a fantastic exhibition last year, we are delighted to announce that the Better Business Show will be back on Thursday 1st February 2018.
Stand bookings are now open - stands sold out last year, so to secure your stand, please book early and take advantage of the Early Bird offer that runs until 30th October 2017. Be part of the exhibition and don’t miss out - this year looks set to be bigger and better. • Don’t miss this opportunity to be part of the local business scene • More stands for more local businesses • Showcase YOUR business and network with the best • Get involved and get noticed • Exhibit and promote your business • Share your success at this unmissable day • Increase your visibility
Visit our website for further details
Here’s what last year’s exhibitors said about the show MOMENTUM Business Support Ltd “Two appointments booked on the day, five ‘hot leads’, three ‘warm leads’, thirty new contacts and two new clients confirmed so far! I attended the show last year as a visitor and it looked great, so we decided to get a stand for this year. I was not disappointed as the day was a complete success for us - I’ll definitely be coming again next year!” Warnes Projects Ltd “We had further interest from local firms who are interested in working as suncontractors and arranged meeting with them. We had further interest from local firms who would interested in working as subcontractors and also arranged meetings with them. We gained 71 new business contacts and have also had a project awarded to us from a client we met at our first show last year. This show is a fantastic spring board for any small business and is one of the most important days in our company calendar.
Networking Lunch 20th October 12pm - Jonathan Sharrock, CEO of Coast to Capital
Chamber Hub – FREE networking 15th September, 13th October, 17th November, 15th December
Save the Date 6th December – Chamber Christmas Social
Book your place now at
Have you seen the new Chamber Connect magazine? This was launched at the Better Business Show and the third edition is out now. Contact the office for more information on our exclusive member offers for advertising. For information on advertising contact firstname.lastname@example.org
There will be several sponsorship packages on offer for the show including the Platinum Headline Sponsorship opportunity. Packages will include partner opportunities and silver and gold sponsorship. For further details on the sponsorship packages, please contact tracie@ worthingandadurchamber.co.uk
22nd September 7.30am - Update from Rampion Windfarm
THE TICKING TIME BOMB by Maarten Hoffmann
ocial Media has taken over the world in so many ways that it is difficult to keep up. In the main, it’s a great asset but there is a dark side. Not just the losers sitting in their little bedsits spewing forth bile and hatred, cyber bullying, fake news and revenge porn, although all that is bad enough. There is an insidious little worm being created that is narrowing peoples view of the world and allowing unintelligent bias to take hold. Community Groups are the problem whereby SM channels such as Facebook allow groups to see only the news that agrees with their views. This is how Trump got elected. Have a view, right or wrong, restrict all other news that does not comply with that view and then invite lots of people to join. This ignorant bias is then left to roam free without the complication of any alternative view being expressed. A tremendous way for the biased to remain biased. One of the many ways this is showing its ugly face is with the Holocaust. Holocaust
denial is allowed to run unchallenged and more and more youngsters are getting this message and believing it to be true. It is, plain and simple, brainwashing. Sir Peter Bazalgette, the former head of the Arts Council England, said that tech companies such as Twitter and Facebook are allowing people to choose to communicate only with those who share their views, which results in groups of deniers whose opinions go unchallenged. “I have the impression that
Holocaust denial may well grow in the next 20 years, rather than diminish” he said. “The internet is an infinite network of communication. Most newspaper and television reports are mediated but the internet is completely different. It is entirely demonic. If you search for holocaust denial, you will be amazed at what pops up. Our job is to challenge that as there will come the day when there are no primary witnesses left on earth but how do you challenge that view
when they are in closed groups of people determined to deny the event ever took place.” Historical truth must win out or the human race is destined to repeat such horrors time and time again. My father was in the Dachau concentration camp in Germany. He was not Jewish but he was one of the leaders of the Dutch Resistance and once caught, he was sent into the hands of the Nazi butchers. Over the period of two years, they tortured him to reveal the names and location of the rest of the group. Even after they pulled his finger nails out with pliers and cut off his eye lids so that he could
never close his eyes, he refused to revealed the information. He was finally rescued, close to death, by the Allies and taken to England for surgery and recuperation. This is but one of 6 million stories and it should NEVER be forgotten.
This is how terrorist brainwashing happens. Tell them it is the god given truth, feed it to them endlessly, refuse them any other point of view and then tell them to go and kill. They will as they believe it to be the truth and they are doing God’s will to smite the unbelievers.
Tim Berners-Lee, the British computer scientist who invented the web 25 years ago, called for a bill of rights that would guarantee the independence of the internet and ensure users’ privacy. He called for an internet version of the Magna Carta, the 13th century English charter credited with guaranteeing basic rights and freedoms.
If a government can block you going to, for example, the opposition’s political pages, then they can give you a blinkered view of reality to keep themselves in power Tim Berners-Lee
These on-line groups spread hatred, lies and bias and should be stopped without delay. Apparently, there was one such group of over 1 million people in the US who would only ever receive positive news of Trump during the election campaign. Any negative story was filtered out and this formed their opinion. The violence in the streets immediately after the election was caused by many of these people who just could not understand the other side’s view. They were deeply entrenched in their view and this was backed up by the news they had been fed with no alternative view allowed to be expressed.
Historical truth must win out or the human race is destined to repeat such horrors time and time again.
“If a company or individual can control your access to the internet, if they can control which websites they go to, then they have tremendous control over your life,” BernersLee said at the Web We Want festival on the future of the internet in London.
The internet needs to be controlled. It needs to be mediated and perhaps Tim Berners-Lee’s suggestion of a Magna Carta for the internet is the way to go.
Institute of Directors
By Dean Orgill, Chair of Sussex IoD and Chairman of Mayo Wynne Baxter www.mayowynnebaxter.co.uk â€˘ www.iod.com
t is a foolish business leader who thinks that he knows everything about what goes on in their business and the markets within which it operates. No matter how deep their knowledge there is always likely to be something else that they could learn which may ultimately be to the benefit of their business. That could be a piece of market intelligence, a suggestion of an improvement in a process or some metrics which might challenge what they believe they know and show it in a different light and require a slight change in strategy.
How on earth did business operate, never mind survive and thrive without all of this information?
to go with their instincts and anticipate what the customer wanted next even before the customer realised it.
Of course some basic information has always been key, and would be pored over even when it was in huge leather-bound ledgers in beautiful copper-plate writing. Stock records, balance sheets, profit ledgers and cash-flows have always been, and will remain, key components of information. But for many years what we might today consider to be critical data simply was not available.
Similarly within the business itself often issues might be detected, considered and resolved without those involved realising that they had been through the various stages of any process to achieve that outcome.
Over the years I have met a great many business people whose knowledge of their business, their sector and their market has been comprehensive and truly impressive. There is also of course an almost incredible amount of data that can now be obtained to demonstrate the performance of your own business, and that of your competitors.
Business empires were built paying heed to the critical information available as mentioned but beyond that the business relied upon the skill and instincts of its managers and owners. The good businesses knew that if they kept the financial basics consistently in mind then they would then flourish, or otherwise, by being clear on what they offered and keeping their customers happy. It may be a concentration on quality and service offered, or a pile it high and sell it cheap approach. Whatever it was would involve keeping in touch with their customersâ€™ wants and needs but also, I would suggest, being bold enough sometimes
Digital information in particular can show you immense detail on what has happened, and indeed often what is happening in real time for your own business, and can be cut, sliced and diced into an almost endless set of permutations.
The data available to us now can be incredibly useful, and we would be foolish not to take advantage of it. However, I do not think that we should lose sight of our instincts either. Experience in and/or raw talent for business still have a very valuable role to play and we should not lose sight of that. Information coupled with insight should be the winning combination.
JUST A THOUGHT Do you know all that you could or should about your business?
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Vines of Guildford Slyfield Green Estate, Woking Road Guildford, Surrey GU1 1RU www.vinesguildfordmini.co.uk
Vines of Redhill 10-12 Bonehurst Road, Salfords Redhill, Surrey RH1 5EP www.vinesofredhillmini.co.uk
MINI Business Partnership Official fuel economy figures for the new MINI Countryman Plug-in Hybrid: Combined 122.8-134.5 mpg (2.3-2.1 l/100km). CO2 emissions 52-49 g/km. *Figures are obtained in a standardised test cycle using a combination of battery power and petrol fuel after the battery had been fully charged. They are intended for comparisons between vehicles and may not be representative of what a user achieves under usual driving conditions. The new MINI Cooper S E Countryman ALL4 is a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle that requires mains electricity for charging. Vines Ltd is a credit broker. Business users only. 1Price shown for a new MINI Cooper S E Countryman ALL4 excludes VAT at 20% and is for a 36 month Contract Hire agreement, with a contract mileage of 24,000 miles and an excess mileage charge of 8.56 pence per mile. Applies for new vehicles ordered between 1 July and 30 September 2017 and registered by 31 December 2017 (subject to availability). At the end of your agreement you must return the vehicle and vehicle condition, excess mileage and other charges may be payable. Available subject to status to UK residents aged 18 or over. Guarantees and indemnities may be required. The amount of VAT you can reclaim depends on your business VAT status. Terms and conditions apply. Offer may be varied, withdrawn or extended at any time. Hire provided by BMW Group Corporate Finance. BMW Group Corporate Finance is a trading style of Alphabet (GB) Limited, Alphabet House, Summit Avenue, Farnborough, Hampshire GU14 0FB. BMW (UK) Ltd, Summit ONE, Summit Avenue, Farnborough, Hampshire GU14 0FB. Registered in England and Wales 1378137. Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority for credit broking activities.
The widest-read business publication in the South East. Covering International Trade, Legal Issues, Accountancy, Wealth Management, Business...
Published on Aug 17, 2017
The widest-read business publication in the South East. Covering International Trade, Legal Issues, Accountancy, Wealth Management, Business...