Planning the future of skills training in business

10am-1pm // Thursday 28th February

AMEX Community Stadium, Brighton

Providing enough skilled people to fill job vacancies is getting critically hard.

The training and technical skills providers in the South East often find it a challenge to keep up with emerging technologies and changing needs of industry.

The Sussex Council of Training Providers is hosting an informal TeachToo mini-conference this month, in partnership with the Association of Colleges and The Education & Training Foundation.

We want to celebrate innovation in technical training and explore new ways of approaching co-design, co-delivery and dual-professionalism between industry practitioners and training providers.


Worried about the post-Brexit workforce? T Levels? Apprenticeships? Spending the Levy?

• Hear some amazing examples of how the relationships between training providers and employers are transforming the workforce and the bottom line with innovative projects

• Learn about the TeachToo framework - and how colleges and businesses are revolutionising training programmes around the UK

• Get practical tools to help kick-start new ideas and get your experienced staff involved in mentoring and assessment

• Listen to examples of innovation in Sussex that could help you think about your approach to designing training

• Meet like-minded professionals who are rethinking approaches to designing work placements, training courses and staff development



Wendy Martin - Head of Stansted Airport College - on site-based engineering and aeronautical training

Emily Langler - HR Executive at Ideal Networks - on how Sussex technology companies and training providers can be more imaginative when co-designing work-based learning

James Maltby, Learning Technology Manager at Plumpton College - on virtual reality co-design with employers

Cerian Ayres, Head of Technical Education at ETF - on the national picture around employer/provider curriculum co-design




From business

• CEOs / COOs / MDs

• HR managers

• Learning & development officials

• Line managers

• Department heads

From education

• Curriculum leads

• Senior leadership team

• Specialist tutors and assessors

• Careers advisers

The International Women's Day Pop-up Breakfast with Brighton Chamber and Lewes FC

The International Women's Day Pop-up Breakfast with Brighton Chamber and Lewes FC

Karen Dobres was never ambivalent about football – in fact, she hated it.

So how was it that she came to be so actively involved in the beautiful game?

A former model, manager and counsellor, Karen is not a typical football club press officer. But then Lewes is not a typical football club. Owned by the community, it’s the first UK club to pay its male and female players equally.

At Brighton Chamber’s special International Women’s Day Pop-up Breakfast, she’ll be talking about the history of the club and of women’s football, and her own football journey.

“It actually annoys me that we're having to battle for equality in football or any other business. To not be discriminated against for your innate characteristics is a basic human right, and I'm - carefully - angry about fighting for it! I'm looking forward to explaining why, given the opportunity, there is no reason that women's football can't reach the same heights as men's.” – Karen Dobres.

Join the Chamber on Wednesday 6 March for a delicious Bagelman breakfast at PLATF9RM, and hear how both Karen and Lewes FC are working hard to even the playing field for women.

Book your place here

You can join Brighton Chamber’s mailing list here

Brighton and Hove Business Reception – for organisations interested in finding out how apprenticeships can grow your business.

Brighton and Hove Business Reception – for organisations interested in finding out how apprenticeships can grow your business.

Thursday 7th March
Amex Stadium

The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) and South East Apprenticeship Ambassador Network warmly invites you to attend a Business Reception focused on apprenticeships. If you employ, or are considering employing, an apprentice in the Greater Brighton and Hove area this networking event is for you. SME’s are the stalwart of apprenticeships, of the 101,860 unique employer apprenticeship starts in 2016/17, 77% were small employers with less than 49 staff. At the Business Reception you will meet local businesses that have recruited apprentices, find out about available funding and how you can access further help and support. Attendees will also be able to stay for the city Apprenticeship Graduation.

The event takes place in National Apprenticeship Week. This annual week-long celebration of apprenticeships brings the whole apprenticeship community together to celebrate the impact of apprenticeships on individuals, employers and the economy and will seek to encourage even more people to choose apprenticeships as a fast-track to a great career

Click here for more information and to register for the reception.

*Event Alert* Prosperity Through Innovation – Driving Growth Across Our Coastal Region

Prosperity Through Innovation –

Driving Growth Across Our Coastal Region

Thursday 7th March 2019.

Centenary Innovation Centre / Ricardo’s, Shoreham Airport / BN43 5FG

4pm – 7pm with refreshments provided

An opportunity to promote our coastal region; from high-speed digital connectivity to unlocking development sites, our speakers will outline the different creative strategies and technological advances that have the potential to deliver economic growth in the area. Our speakers include:

• David Joy, Chief Executive at London and Continental Railways Ltd with vast experience of working with Local Authorities to bring forward economic growth and development

• Martin Kemp, City Fibre who are transforming the digital infrastructure along the coast

• Lawrence Wright, Head of Innovation at Willmott Dixon will look at building for the future and addressing the sectors future challenges

• Dr Lucy Greenwood, Savills will give an overview of the coastal regions housing market and the trends likely to affect the area in the future.

Time is running short and spaces are limited so please click here to register via Eventbrite

If you haven't already registered, this is a reminder for the coastal region's business leaders event:

A little bit about our organising partners:

• The Coastal West Sussex Partnership is a business led partnership bringing together senior leaders from industry, education and the public sector to take action and use its individual and collective talents to make a difference in the local economy.

• The Greater Brighton Economic Board is the overarching, legally constituted body behind the growth of the Greater Brighton City Region.

Willmott Dixon is a privately-owned contracting and interior fit-out group. Founded in 1852, we create value for customers, stakeholders and communities by working in a sustainable and responsible way to shape the built environment and make a positive impact to society's well-being.

Hove Gardens finally gets go-ahead

Hove Gardens finally gets go-ahead

Local developers Matsim have just won their appeal against the Council’s July 2017 refusal of their Hove Gardens Project. A government Planning Inspector has approved the high density redevelopment of the former Furniture Village warehouse to provide 186 apartments, 1,300 sq.m. of offices and 230 sq.m. of shops.

This £70m investment will kick-start the transformation of one of the most run-down areas of Hove. From Fonthill Road east, a re-surfaced Conway Street will be landscaped, lined with shops and offices and ‘traffic calmed’ to make a pedestrian/cycle friendly route to the substantially improved steps up to Goldstone Villas – a huge improvement for nearby residents and people walking through the area from Poets Corner.

The Planning Committee turned it down for one reason only - a deficit of 12 ‘affordable’ homes. The project provided 35 ‘affordable’ housing units (19%) whereas their independent valuation expert said it could provide 47 (25%). Readers with long memories may recall that the Argus reported planning chair Julie Cattell’s comment that the scheme was almost perfect but ‘with a little bit missing’ (22.06.17 Regeneration chance lost with flats refusal).

It appears that the Committee wrongly assumed that Matsim would revise the scheme to close this gap, rather than appeal. Instead Matsim secured planning approvals for 40,000 sq.m offices and then appealed. These approvals significantly increased the value of the site and therefore land costs, alongside increased construction costs. These increased costs only partially offset the estimated higher sales figures due to house price rises since July 2017.

Thus the Inspector agreed with Matsim that the project was now only viable with 19 affordable units - 10%. Moreover, he also had to take account of the fact that the Council could no longer demonstrate a 5 year supply of land for house-building. But he did impose a ‘review mechanism’ to ensure additional ‘affordable’ units will be provided if actual costs and sales produce a surplus.

The Hove Station Neighbourhood Forum supported Matsim at the appeal for the same reasons we supported the original application. We are in the final stages of a five year process of preparing a statutory Neighbourhood Plan which aims to give the local community a real say in the large-scale regeneration of our area as set out in the 2014 City Plan. Our Plan has a target of 40% ‘affordable’ units, But for this uniquely located project a significantly lower level is acceptable because it will ‘kick-start’ the delivery of the Plan’s vision of a new Hove Station Quarter, whereas Matsim’s alternative of refurbishing the big shed would be entirely the wrong use for this key site. Moreover, as it is a unique project it does not create a precedent. The Neighbourhood Plan will require subsequent phases of the Conway Street redevelopment to deliver much higher proportions of affordable housing – not least on council owned land.

In his report the Inspector agreed with the Forum’s key arguments

‘….being the first scheme to come forward I acknowledge that the proposed development could in effect kick-start this process of the wider regeneration of this area..’ and ‘…would result in an improvement to the character and appearance of the area against the existing situation. I attach considerable weight and importance to these benefits’

His decision is a game-changer. It paves the way for an innovative move beyond a ‘business as usual’ approach of dealing with development on a project by project basis. The challenge now is for the Council, private landowners and the Forum to work collectively to the deliver the redevelopment of the whole Conway Street area, in a process which brings a fair share of benefits to local residents.



Over 200 Sussex businesses have entered this year’s Sussex Food and Drink Awards and with over 18,000 public votes, 3,000 more than last year, it is another record-breaking year for this prestigious awards scheme.

The countdown is now on for Sussex Food and Drink Awards banquet on 15th May 2019 at the Amex Stadium in Falmer. The panel of expert judges, chaired by prominent Sussex farmer and Nuffield Scholar, William Goodwin, is now carrying out the last stages of judging and three Grand Finalists in each of the ten categories will be announced early in March.

Olympic gold medalist and patron to the awards, Sally Gunnell OBE, will host the banquet in May with Danny Pike of BBC Sussex, where winners will be revealed and receive their coveted trophies. Guests will be treated to a wonderful ‘Sussex bubbly and Harvey’s ale reception’, supported by NFU Mutual Pulborough, followed by a stunning seven-course banquet created by Amex Stadium head chef, David Crawford and his team, using superb Sussex ingredients.

Organisers are urging people to book their tickets early for what is renowned as the Sussex Foodie event of the year’ at www.sussexfoodawards.biz for this lively awards ceremony and come and celebrate with 400 leaders in the food, drink and farming industry in the county.

Guests will be the first to know who is crowned Sussex Butcher of the Year, sponsored by RP Meats Wholesale Ltd; Sussex Food Producer of the Year, sponsored by Southern Co-op; Sussex Drink Producer of the Year, sponsored by Natural PR; Sussex Farmers’ Market of the Year, sponsored by Harvey’s Brewery; Sussex Food Shop of the Year, sponsored by Sussex Food & Drink Network; Sussex Eating Experience of the Year, sponsored by Natural Partnerships CIC; Young Sussex Farmer of the Year, sponsored by the South of England Agricultural Society in association with Farmers Weekly; Sussex Newcomer of the Year, sponsored by SRC-Time; and Sussex Young Chef of the Year, sponsored by Blakes Foods.

Now in its 13th year, the Sussex Food and Drink Awards is run by Natural Partnerships Community Interest Company (CIC), co-directed by Hilary Knight of the Sussex Food & Drink Network, specialist consultant for local food businesses; and Paula Seager, Managing Director of Natural PR Ltd, a leading Sussex PR and community relations firm.

They believe that buying local food and drink is the environmentally responsible choice for everyone, reducing food miles, waste and packaging, as well as helping to sustain the local economy. Through these unique awards and other projects including www.southdownsfood.org, they are helping residents and visitors to the region to find out about dozens of fantastic artisan producers, as well as where to buy and enjoy local produce.

Said Hilary Knight, co-director of Natural Partnerships CIC, “We are absolutely thrilled that so many businesses, both familiar and new, have engaged with the awards again this year and to have received over 18,000 votes from the public makes us very proud and excited about the future. We keep beating record figures year on year and the quality of the entries demonstrates the superb innovation in Sussex food and drink and is testament to the recognition and value that is placed on winning these awards.”

Book your spot now for the 2019 awards banquet and come and celebrate the very best in Sussex food and drink at www.sussexfoodawards.biz

PLATF9RM reveals ambitious plans for latest Hove Town Hall development

PLATF9RM reveals ambitious plans for latest Hove Town Hall development

Brighton & Hove’s largest independent coworking and business community, PLATF9RM is turning a previously vacant area of Hove Town Hall into the company’s first semi-public venue. The new ground floor development will connect to PLATF9RM’s existing space on the second floor of Hove Town Hall, which has been home to more than 200 members and 50 businesses since 2017.

Artist's impressions have today been released of the latest PLATF9RM venue, which is opening its doors on Friday 1st March. With space for up to 200 people, the bold ground floor development of more than 4,000 sq foot will breathe life back into the building, accentuating its original soft-brutalist features and exposing shuttered concrete previously unseen for over 25 years.

The development follows an £11 million renovation of the iconic Brutalist building in 2016. The Church Road undercroft that PLATF9RM is converting was last open to the public as a walkway more than 25 years ago. In the intervening years it was divided into separate spaces that were used for council offices, parking permit collection, a toy library and even a wedding room.

PLATF9RM’s new members-only coworking lounge and informal meeting area will benefit from an adjacent cafe and bar space that will also be open to the public from spring 2019.

The mezzanine floors will feature four meeting rooms available to members and non-members, including a 12-person boardroom with elevated views across the atrium. Downstairs will house showers for cycling commuters, artwork, bar seating and a 100-person plus event space with a full community programme of social and cultural events. The outside will also be opened out into a cafe working space.

Seb Royle, CEO and founder of PLATF9RM, said: “Brighton & Hove has the most incredible blend of talented people and businesses, but they have long lacked a home that matches their ambitions.

“PLATF9RM exists to support new and exciting ways of working and enable freelancers and businesses to spark new connections. This venture is a physical representation of that vision.

“It will be the first PLATF9RM venue with a high street presence and public access. We’re bringing this right into the community to support our city’s unique working culture, while rejuvenating the high street at the same time.”

Council leader, Daniel Yates, said: “Brighton & Hove is at the forefront of new ways of working, and it’s great to see an unused part of Hove Town Hall being brought back to life, offering co-working space for people wanting to work, network, host meetings and do business.

“Collaborative workspaces that foster connections between small businesses and freelancers are an essential part of the ecosystem for this thriving part of our economy. We’re very happy to be supporting PLATF9RM in transforming this space to serve our diverse business community.”

PLATF9RM’s two existing venues at North Road’s Tower Point and the second floor of Hove Town Hall on Church Road are already home to 650 members across 200 businesses ranging from startups to larger employers. The new venue, especially aimed at freelancers, will have room for 200 more members.

Anthony Prior, Director of Bagelman, added: “As a local high street business owner it’s encouraging to see this aspirational development bringing together the trends for freelance working and cafe culture. We need people with new ideas to evolve the high street and this hybrid between work, leisure and community could be part of the puzzle.”

PLATF9RM members use a blend of private offices and collaborative working environments among beautifully fitted surroundings. They can choose various packages ranging from unlimited access or a set number of hours per week starting from £99 a month. Packages above the entry level 40hr/per week membership allow members to move between venues as much as they like, with the latest venture at Hove Town Hall being no exception.

More than 50 new members have already signed up to join once the building opens. To book a tour of the space contact jess@platf9rm.com or visit www.platf9rm.com/groundfloor.



Sussex Police has initiated the launch of an innovative programme in Brighton to inspire young people by building their confidence and self-esteem to improve their employment and educational opportunities. Be the Change, created in 2015, has helped to support 2,000 young people in Sussex and now sees the start of the new Brighton programme with 110 school students from nine Brighton and Hove secondary schools joining the launch event on Thursday, January 31 at the American Express Community Stadium.

The 2019 Brighton programme launched following aspirations of Sussex Police to develop a preventative programme to support disengaged young people. The programme was also made possible following the support and business volunteers from other leading local employers, including headline sponsor Brandwatch and supporting partners American Express, Legal & General, Focus Group and Brighton and Hove City Council. The volunteer business guides from some of Brighton’s biggest employers were touched by the honest and emotional stories from 13 and 14 year old local students who shared their experiences and day-to-day challenges at the Brighton Be the Change event.

110 students and 36 business volunteers took part in activities that focussed on happiness, confidence, hope, relationships and employability, encouraging them to focus on personal qualities as well as qualifications and provide them with techniques to confidently promote themselves. Many of them spoke bravely about the barriers which they feel are holding them back, but now feel more positive about both their education and employment future, through the support of their business volunteers.

Be the Change has been co-developed by Gary Peters of LoveLocalJobs.com and co-founder Graham Moore of metamoorephosis. At the ground breaking launch, the students and business volunteers took part in activities that were created and expertly led by, Graham Moore, a former teacher who understands the challenges facing young people today.

Graham said: “Our vision is for every young person to have raised hope and confidence, to have the chance to develop life skills and create positive cycles that will prepare them for life. Be the Change is a perfect vehicle to help young people develop the qualities and qualifications they need for a better future. The volunteers and the invaluable support and belief of local businesses adds a further dimension and depth to the engagement and journey the young people will experience.”

Founder of LoveLocalJobs.com Gary Peters said: “So many people leave school without the tools, confidence or belief to realise their full potential and Be the Change helps ensure our local next generation can thrive, irrespective of any barriers that may be in their way. Anybody can work to be the best they can be; it’s our commitment to give them the tools, confidence and inspiration to do so.”

Donna Ward, Detective Inspector from Sussex Police said: “We are really proud that alongside our partners, we have been able to make this happen for the young people of Brighton & Hove. We know that there is a direct correlation between school exclusions and the likelihood of being drawn into crime and so supporting those who are disengaged in education and empowering them to make positive choices acts as an excellent early preventative measure.

“As well as the wealth of benefits to the children who have been selected to participate in this programme, this is also a fantastic opportunity for the nine Brighton Police Officers and staff who have volunteered alongside other local businesses to act as mentors for the duration of the programme. We are always looking to develop new ways of engaging with and breaking down barriers with young people and programmes such as this provide the ideal opportunity to do just that.”

Jeremy Holtom, Head of Year 9 at Dorothy Stringer School said: “A superb day. Every student was welcomed and valued. They were given a boost to their confidence and a chance to share and have celebrated what is best about them. I watched a visible and positive change take place in many of my students during the course of the day. An inspirational start to what promises to be a really beneficial programme.”

To find out more about Be the Change, visit http://promotions.lovelocaljobs.com/bethechange/

High growth SaaS startup Futrli appoints new CTO to drive next wave of platform evolution

High growth SaaS startup Futrli appoints new CTO to drive next wave of platform evolution

Brighton's Futrli has today announced the appointment of Doug Johnson as Chief Technology Officer (CTO). Joining from behavioural marketing specialist SaleCycle, Johnson brings over 17 years experience to the role in which he will be responsible for driving the technology strategy and direction for Futrli, and working alongside Founder and CEO, Hannah Dawson, in leading the next phase of innovation and growth in Futrli’s platform.

Johnson has held senior positions at multiple high growth technology companies. During his tenure at SaleCycle he oversaw the technology transformation which enabled SaleCycle to achieve 2000% growth in its real-time data processing capability. Prior to this he worked for the Sage Group plc where, in his role as Head of Architecture for Sage One, he was responsible for the global technical strategy behind a single platform which enabled the release of online accounting and payroll solutions in 14 different countries.

Doug’s appointment comes soon after the news of Futrli’s selection to join Tech Nation’s 2019 Upscale 4.0 programme. The programme is designed to turn today’s most promising scale ups into tomorrow’s tech giants, with previous successes including Monzo, Bulb and Bloom & Wild.

Hannah Dawson comments: “This is a significant appointment for us and as we continue to invest in our technology, we’re excited to have Doug’s extensive experience and knowledge joining Futrli. Doug brings domain expertise, leadership and customer focus to the role and will be instrumental in helping us achieve our growth ambitions.

“In 2018 we doubled our workforce and increased our customer base by 30% year-on-year. We expect this trend to continue throughout 2019 and beyond, so introducing talent of Doug’s calibre is critical at this formative time for the business.”

Doug Johnson comments: “The vision for Futrli to have a groundbreaking impact on the success rate of small businesses worldwide is truly inspiring. Having witnessed first-hand the team's focus, determination, passion and overall capability, I feel privileged to be joining them in February to help bring that vision to life.”

Johnson will join the Futrli team on 18 February 2019.



Some important role changes are taking place at Shoreham Port this month. Tony Parker, previously Director of Engineering, is moving over to the new role of Director of Infrastructure & Climate Change, the first of its kind for a UK port. Meanwhile, Brian Rousell has been promoted from Deputy Director to Director of Engineering.

As an Eco-Port, Shoreham Port regularly assesses its environmental impact to develop strategies to anticipate and respond to environmental challenges, including climate change, air quality and energy conservation as well as noise, waste, and water management.

Tony is a Chartered Engineer, a Member of the Institution of Civil Engineers and a member of the ICE’s South Maritime Panel. With over 40 years of experience in the design, implementation and management of port and harbour facilities, as well coast protection and waterside development, Tony Parker has a wealth of expertise that makes him an ideal fit for the pioneering role of Director of Infrastructure & Climate Change.

Tony commented “I am very much looking forward to taking on my new role. I will be pushing forward on the large infrastructure challenges at the Port such as a new, bigger and more efficient lock and major schemes to counter sea level rise and increased storminess.’’

Tony continued “The climate change role is very much about achieving the most positive contribution possible for a port to the challenges of climate change and the quality of the environment. Working closely with our local authorities and communities, we will aim to speed our way towards nett zero emission of greenhouse gases with a gradual reduction in the use of fossil fuels around the Port and an increase in our generation and use of green energy sources like solar panels and wind turbines.’’

‘’We also intend to enhance our ability to supply electricity directly to ships berthed on our quays and to fit the most energy-efficient lighting and power systems throughout the entire Port estate. In cooperation with the rest of the port industry and government, we will also work to increase the role of highly energy-efficient coastal shipping to replace the relatively high energy use of road and rail transport for goods.’’

In his new role as Director of Engineering, Brian Rousell will oversee the maintenance of all the quays, harbour arms, lock gates, and other assets around the Port, as well as managing the design and construction of new projects, such as new transit sheds, coast protection and terminals.

Brian has cumulatively worked at the Port for over seven years, having worked as a Port Engineer for six years from 2009 and returning to become the Deputy Director of Engineering in February of last year. Prior to joining the Port, Brian studied Civil Engineering at the University of Portsmouth before working in a variety of engineering roles, predominantly working within clean and waste water schemes. Brian is a Chartered Civil Engineer, a Member of the Institution of Civil Engineers and a STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Maths) Ambassador.

Brian commented “I am very proud to take on the role of Director of Engineering at the Port. Shoreham Port provides a fascinating range of engineering challenges and I am excited to lead our dedicated, skilled and enthusiastic team through these over the coming years. I plan to build on the approach that Tony has taken over the years, earning much respect in the maritime engineering world and leaving the Port’s infrastructure in a very strong position. I am really looking forward to working with my Senior Leadership Team peers and the Non-executive Board, absolutely confirming my decision to return for a second spell at Shoreham Port.”

Brexit & Brighton

Brexit & Brighton

The UK’s housing market and the construction industry, initially appeared relatively unaffected by the 2016 vote to leave the EU, despite a short pause after the surprise referendum result as householders took stock. But now with departure from the EU fast approaching in March 2019, it seems as if the uncertainties surrounding Brexit are weighing heavily on the property market.

Mark Carney, governor of the Bank of England, stated in September that a disorderly no-deal Brexit could see a drop in house prices by a third. Whilst he added that this most likely to impact the capital. Mr Carney’s warning did represent an extreme scenario, and the specifics of any deal ‘finally’ agreed by the government will of course affect the outcome and how the economy as a whole performs post Brexit.

There are many factors for households to consider when deciding whether Brexit should affect their decisions on house purchases and sales.

Housing markets in London have certainly slowed: with prices in London falling by 0.7 per cent in the past year, according to the Office for National Statistics. Transaction levels in the capital have also dropped 20 per cent on the same period from last year.

Moving away from the capital you can see clear evidence that average house prices remain on the rise. House prices overall in England increased by 3% in the year to September 2018, with Wales and Scotland both seeing increases of 5.8% over the same period.

Brighton itself was one of the areas that voted most overwhelmingly in favour to remain at almost 70%. Only 8 areas (outside of London boroughs) of a total of 400 had a higher remain percentage.

Tom Sleven of Graves Jenkins commented “We have noticed that as Brexit approaches most buyers are choosing to take a ‘wait and see’ approach regarding their sale or purchase. This is having a slowing affect on the marketplace but could rapidly change post Brexit. That being said the market has continued to remain active in Brighton with us agreeing multiple deals in the first weeks of January, which bodes well for the belief in the market from buyers”. Adding that “rather than wait sellers should consider marketing their property now, as there is so little housing stock available and still so many buyers on the lookout that you are likely to have a better chance of securing a sale at a good price”.

Our firm is an estate agency with a reputation built on total commitment to customer service and expert local knowledge. For over 25 years we have been helping people secure the best price in the shortest time for their home.

Should you wish to take advantage of their expertise, please call Tom Sleven on 01273 601060, to book your appointment.

Tom Sleven Head of Residential; Graves Jenkins

Military spouses face discrimination when applying for jobs

Military spouses face discrimination when applying for jobs

• Barclays research shows that four in ten say that having a partner in the military has prevented them from being offered a job interview

• A fifth of military spouses have hidden their military connection from potential employers

• A third say that their spouse’s career has meant that they’ve had to leave a job or take reduced hours

Military spouses are hiding their military connections when applying for jobs, a new study from Barclays has revealed.

The research from the Barclays AFTER (Armed Forces Transition, Employment & Resettlement) programme shows that partners of military personnel face a number of career challenges, with as many as four in ten (39 per cent) believing that they haven’t progressed through a job application because of their partner’s career choice. A fifth (18 per cent) believe this has happened on multiple occasions.

A significant number of military spouses think there is an underlying bias against hiring military spouses, with four in ten (38 per cent) believing that employers would be put off hiring someone if they knew that their partner was in the military. It does not come as a surprise therefore that a fifth (19 per cent) of spouses have hidden the fact that they are a military partner from a potential employer.

Kevin Gartside, Director of the AFTER programme at Barclays, said: “Our Armed Forces are well known for their dedication and it’s important to remember that, behind the scenes, they’ll often be supported by an equally committed partner. Today’s research reminds us that this commitment can lead to military spouses having to make sacrifices in their own careers or, even worse, being potentially overlooked by employers.”

Career barriers

Two-thirds (66 per cent) of military spouses feel that having a partner in the Armed Forces has negatively impacted their career in some way, with many having to sacrifice their own careers to accommodate their partner’s. A third (33 per cent) report they have had to leave a job or take reduced hours because of it, while 15 per cent have had to take a job below their level of experience.

As well as a perceived bias amongst employers, many military spouses report wider barriers that hold them back when it comes to their career. The majority of military spouses (55 per cent) say their careers do (or did) take second place to their partner’s, while half (50 per cent) think they could have been able to focus more on their career if their partner was not in the Armed Forces.

Supporting military spouses

Perhaps reflective of the nature of military life, half of military spouses (50 per cent) say they’d benefit from a job that allowed flexible working – allowing them to keep working in the same job regardless of where their partners are posted.

In addition to this, 37 per cent say they’d like more support with finding work placements, while 28 per cent say practical advice on writing CVs and attending interviews would help them to achieve their full career potential.

Kevin Gartside adds “With the right support in place, employers of all sizes can help military spouses to find rewarding, challenging careers that suit their lifestyle – whether that’s offering flexible working or supporting them through the job application process. At Barclays, we’re committed to supporting military families and offer targeted support for spouses whose partners are in the Armed Forces, by offering work experience and CV support.”

Helen, a military spouse from Barclays’ office in Glasgow said: “I’ve often hidden my military connection from past employers, as I didn’t want to be seen as asking for special treatment or allowances.

“For me, one of the most challenging aspects of being a military spouse is balancing a young family and a full-time career when, often, my husband’s working schedule has to take priority. In previous jobs, I have felt that not being able to travel or work longer hours has hindered my career.

“It wasn’t until I became enrolled in the Barclays AFTER programme that I felt comfortable talking about my personal circumstances with my employer, however now I feel like I can have a transparent conversation with my colleagues and arrange my work around the needs of my family.”



• Monster.co.uk releases its Digital Cities Ranking highlighting the top 10 cities in the UK for developing digital careers outside of London

• Monster.co.uk analysed digital economy growth, available digital jobs and quality of life

• Created a Digital Cities Hub where candidates can find and apply for jobs outside of London easily: https://www.monster.co.uk/digital-cities.

United Kingdom – Monster’s Digital Cities highlights the top 10 cities outside of London to develop a digital career. To create the ranking Monster analysed a variety of factors across cities in the UK, including digital economy growth, available digital jobs and quality of life to create an overall score. The full rankings and corresponding information, including digital jobs available in these areas is available on Monster’s new Digital Cities Hub.

Louise Goodman, Marketing Director at Monster.co.uk, comments: “Our first Digital Cities ranking shows the digital industry is thriving all over the country, not just in London. With London fast becoming unaffordable for the majority of young people starting out their careers, we hope this ranking will give them confidence that there are exciting opportunities in their home or university cities. You don’t have to move to London to make it in digital!”

Birmingham topped the list thanks to the availability of over 437 digital jobs, combined with 33% industry growth YoY and average salaries of over £43,000 alongside average costs of £638 to rent a one bed home and £4 for a pint.

Leeds saw higher average earnings (£50,041) and lower cost of living, but had slightly fewer jobs than Birmingham available (310) granting it fourth spot on the UK wide ranking.

Edinburgh, seventh in the ranking of best places outside the capital to work, saw the highest average wages (£53,019) and eighth place Belfast saw the lowest rents (£528.5) combined with the largest digital growth with 37%.

Monster Digital Cities ranking:

For more information on each of these top Digital Cities and how to apply for digital focused jobs in the area head to: https://www.monster.co.uk/digital-cities.

New rules on street fundraising in Brighton & Hove

New rules on street fundraising

A new street fundraising agreement covering responsible face-to-face fundraising in Brighton & Hove comes into force today (Monday 28 January).

The agreement between the council, the Brighton City Centre Business Improvement District (BID) and the Institute of Fundraising (IoF) covers the whole city. 

The agreement limits fundraising to a number of streets in the city centre and sets controls on when fundraising can take place, the number of fundraisers in a location and the frequency of visits a week. 

The aim of the ‘Site Management Agreement’ (SMA) is to provide a balance between the duty of charities as they raise vital funds and the rights of the public not to be put under undue pressure to give.

•   Read the Brighton & Hove Site Management Agreement in full (PDF 816KB)

Getting the balance right

The decision to review the city’s SMA was made at the Neighbourhoods, Inclusion, Communities & Equalities committee on 3 December 2018 following concerns raised about street fundraising in George Street in Hove.

The new agreement means no street fundraising activity will take place in George Street.

Councillor Emma Daniel, chair of the council’s Neighbourhoods, Inclusion, Communities & Equalities committee, said: 

“Street fundraising is an important way for charities to garner support, but we’ve listened to concerns that it has caused problems in some areas. This new site management agreement will help us get the balance right across the city. I‘m very pleased that we’ve been able to work with the Institute of Fundraisers and the Brighton BID to move so quickly on finding a solution.” 

Gavin Stewart, Chief Executive of the Brighton BID said:

“It’s great to be working closely with partners to ensure that charities have the visibility they need to raise funds, while balancing the needs of businesses and the public. We have worked with the IoF for many years now and welcome this new site management agreement, which I’m sure will deliver a better city centre experience for all involved.”

Alex Xavier, Director of Membership, Compliance and Professional Development at the IoF, said:

“I’m pleased that the IoF is working with Brighton & Hove City Council and the city centre Business Improvement District, Brilliant Brighton  to further improve the level of excellent fundraising in the city centre. Face-to-face fundraising and the work charities do to reach supporters in the Brighton & Hove area is vital to raise important funds for the causes the community cares about. 

“The fundraisers you meet on the street are there to have a personal, one-to-one conversation with members of the public to make a connection with a charitable cause. However, it’s important that these encounters are regulated and are pleasant experiences for the public.”

Street fundraising conditions

As well as setting controls on street fundraising, the new SMA also reiterates the Code of Fundraising Practice and the Street Fundraising Rule Book, which reinforce the rules that all fundraisers in the UK should follow. 

The IoF will support their members operating in Brighton & Hove through a programme of spot checks and continued co-regulation with the council partner. Breaches of the conditions of the SMA attract penalty points under our penalties and sanctions regime.



A new long-term maritime strategy has been launched by the Department for Transport this week, outlining a range of proposals for the next 30 years. Titled Maritime 2050, the initiative aims to ensure that the UK remains a world-leader within the maritime industry and continues to flourish. The strategy covers a range of topics including future economic trends, technology, environment, trade, safety and security, the future of work and infrastructure.

The port-specific aspects of Maritime 2050 will also be collated into a separate Ports Action Plan. This will include a range of research projects, environmental initiatives and a plan to develop a Maritime Innovation Hub in a UK port by 2030.

Secretary of State for Transport, Chris Grayling commented “Maritime is a vital UK industry, bringing in £14 billion to our economy as well as providing thousands of new and exciting careers for people across the country. This strategy is a clear message to the world – we will continue to be a leading maritime nation for the next 30 years and beyond.”

There are also plans to broaden the existing promotion of diversity in the maritime sector. It is hoped that the already established Women in Maritime Taskforce, of which Shoreham Port’s Director of Corporate Services is a part of, can gather pace and tackle gender equality and diversity within the sector.

The Maritime 2050 strategy has been welcomed by Shoreham Port, whose own 2019-2023 strategy plan mirrors that of the Department of Transport, with aims to protect local amenities and the environment, providing sustainable careers, and enhancing diversity at the Port.

Rodney Lunn, Chief Executive at Shoreham Port commented “The Maritime 2050 initiative is vital to Shoreham Port. Not only are we at the heart of our local community, but we are attracting new diverse recruits for the future. We take our responsibility for the local environment incredibly seriously, so much so, we will be appointing a Climate Change Director at the beginning of February.”

Government Announces Additional Funding for England’s Business Districts

Government Announces Additional Funding for England’s Business Districts

The Business Improvement District (BID) Loan Fund has been established to assist with the development of new BIDs in town and city centres in England. BIDs are business-led partnerships which are created to deliver additional services and upgrade the environment for local businesses.

The Fund will support the development of new BIDs, in recognition that some prospective BIDs can encounter prohibitive start-up costs during their development phase.

Loans are repaid from levy receipts and, as repayments are made, further tranches of loans can be made available. Due to this recycling nature of funds, the provider has just announced the next tranche of funding has opened and applications are being encouraged.

The Fund has an overall budget of £500,000 and loans of between £10,000 and £50,000 are available, with £33,000 being the average offered to individual areas. The funds are to be used exclusively in the development of new BID proposals, which allow communities to come together to deliver additional local services and upgrade commercial areas.

High Streets Minister, Jake Berry MP, said:

"BIDs have a proven track record of upgrading commercial areas to enable business owners and entrepreneurs in our town centres and high streets to thrive. Our Loan Fund is designed to provide them with the means to drive regeneration forward and meet local needs.”

Professor Christopher Turner, British Bids Chief Executive said:

"Business Improvement Districts have been shown to be hugely successful in regenerating town centres. There are now over 300 BIDs across the UK and the Loan Fund that the government set up has been vital in helping key BIDs to emerge."

Expressions of Interest for the eleventh tranche of the Fund are being invited until 5pm on Friday 8 March 2019.


Local Businesses Receive Funding Boost

Local Businesses Receive Funding Boost

Coast to Capital recently approved four Growth Grant Applications from the 201819 Growth Grant Programme. In addition to the two applications approved in September 2018, the programme has now awarded growth grants to six businesses across the Coast to Capital area. The programme provides match funded grants to small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) and social enterprises in the Coast to Capital area. The funding comes from the Local Growth Fund and aligns with the new strategic economic plan, ‘Gatwick 360˚’.

We are delighted to announce that the following four businesses were awarded Growth Grants:

• Wildtrax Electronics in Littlehampton were awarded a grant of nearly £50,000 to support production productivity enhancements through the upgrading of their surface mount printed circuit board assembly equipment and Industry 4.0 ‘smart’ component feeders. • The Chichester Biltong Company were awarded a grant of £135,000 to purchase new packing machinery for their expansion project. • Roscomac Ltd in Worthing are approved for a grant of £170,000 to support factory modernisation by purchasing 5 new 5-axis CNC milling machines. • Gemini Print Southern Ltd in Shoreham-by-Sea were awarded a grant of £105,100 to purchase a new high-speed print folder that will increase outputs and efficiencies. The programme is not currently accepting applications, however, we encourage eligible businesses in the Coast to Capital area that want to discuss the potential for grant funding from April 2019 to get in touch with the Growth Hub. More details on the programme and eligibility documents can be found on our website.

Jonathan Sharrock, Coast to Capital Chief Executive said:

“We are thrilled to be able to further support our economic area by funding innovative and high growth projects. This programme compliments our already successful Growth Hub service and the new Coast to Capital Escalator Programme.”

Mark Bullen, Managing Director of Wildtrax Electronics said:

“We are incredibly excited about winning this grant as it will enable us to move towards our goal of being Industry 4.0 ready; with significant technological upgrades in machine automation and intelligence. Leading to a step-change in productivity enhancements throughout Wildtrax and GB Electronics group.”

Simon Smith, Managing Director of The Chichester Biltong Company said:

“The Coast to Capital experience has been surprising. The interest and effort shown to us by the late Amanda Geel and her colleagues goes above and beyond

what we ever expected. They tirelessly guided our efforts without hesitation to enable us to apply and successfully attain a £135k grant award. This award enables us to expand into our second factory and buy the much needed automated packing line that we otherwise could not achieve in the time frame required. Coast to Capital are true small business champions. I recommend this program wholeheartedly.”

Joseph Martello, Managing Director of Roscomac Ltd said:

“Roscomac manufactures a wide range of components and subassemblies using the latest CNC technology. This award is great news for Roscomac, its staff and customers, helping us stay at the forefront of machining technology.”

Steve Cropper, Managing Director of Gemini Print Southern Ltd said:

“It was a challenging process applying for the Growth Grant programme, but their input and guidance was invaluable, and such a thorough due diligence process by experts is a really positive thing for any company. The grant has allowed us to invest in leading-edge, world-class technology to achieve costeffective, high-quality results for our clients.”