Business may be boosted by planning changes

August 2015 Business Scene

Development in the Uckfield area has been pretty much in the deep freeze since the imposition of the 7km rule to protect the Ashdown Forest.

A thaw began with the grant of outline planning permission for 1,000 homes at Ridgewood Farm. Part of the agreement is to establish a “country park” which allows the homes to be built, writes Paul Watson.

It is bigger than needed for the 1,000 homes so should free up more development opportunities.

The Court of Appeal has torpeoded the 7km rule, which may see more small-scale developments allowed.

Since then, then Wealden has come back with a 15km area around the Forest where development will be scrutinised to prevent habitat harm.

First tests of the changed landscape will come with how planning applications are determined.

Wealden District Council ‘buys local’


Statistics show that Wealden District is “buying local” when it comes to goods and services. More than half its spending in the last financial year was with small or medium sized companies. Read more here

Low rate of unemployment


East Sussex County Council says the number of people in the county claiming job seekers allowance has dropped to its lowest since records began in 1983. Figures show the number of claimants has fallen by 27 per cent in one year and now stands at 4,283. This equates to 1.4 per cent of working age people in East Sussex. Read more here

SLM Toyota celebrates anniversary

slm-toyota-outside-250 years of Toyota in the UK has been marked by SLM Toyota on the Bellbrook Business Park with a special ten-day new car event which comes to an end tomorrow (August 2). See here

Help with workplace pensions


Horlock Holdcroft has set up Automatic Enrolment Solutions to help employers handle the demands of workplace pensions. It will enable small and medium sized enterprises hand over responsibility for setting up and managing a pension scheme, allowing them to manage their business. More here

Another TripAdvisor success for Buxted Inn


Delight at the Buxted Inn as it celebrates gaining a third Certificate of Excellence from TripAdvisor. Staff are pictured outisde for a special photocall with to mark the occasion. More on the Inn’s success here

Double celebration for Neva Consultants

neva-new-receptionNeva Consultants planned an event to mark the refurbishment of its headquarters but the occasion turned into a double celebration after a win in the Lewes and Wealden Business Awards. Read more here 

Small loans available for businesses


A new loan scheme has been launched to help small businesses, including those in Uckfield, that want to expand but have difficulty accessing bank loans.

The Small Business Loan Scheme is open to companies employing ten people or less who would like to borrow between £5,000 and £15,000. The typical interest rate will be in the region of 13-14%.

Read more here

New team at The Picture House Restaurant


A new team is in place at The Picture House Restaurant, led by Tansy Marwick, who with husband Kevin owns the restaurant. More here

CV workshops offered in Uckfield


Uckfield CV writer Sue Edwards is organising workshops for people who would like to write their own CVs but need a helping hand.Workshops are either one hour on a one-to-one basis, or two people for two hours, Sue aims to give you all the tools you need to build your own CV and make your job search a success. More here

Charity cricket and family stoolball challenge


All are welcome at a charity cricket match and family stoolball challenge being organised by Parker Building Supplies at Maresfield on Sunday, August 2. It will be held at the cricket club starting at 12.30pm. There will be a barbecue and raffle and all proceeds will go to the Teenage Cancer TrustRead more here

Uckfield Lunch Club

Uckfield business people are invited to a lunchtime networking session which takes place in town on the last Friday of each month.

It provides an opportunity to network with other Uckfield business people over a two-course lunch in an informal setting, and to present your business and any offers you may wish to promote.

To find out more about the lunch club please contact Paula Geear at Dawson Hart by emailing

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