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Southend Business Partnership - September 2021

The latest Southend Business Partnership Newsletter for September 2021

Southend Business Partnership (SBP) Briefing – Think Global, Act Local – 16 September

We are looking forward to seeing you on 16 September at The Boundary, Garon Park, for our next SBP briefing, on the theme of “Think Global, Act Local”. This in-person event will start with an hour-long marketplace networking session. This will be followed by the briefing session, which will include presentations on:

  • South East Export Development (SEED) programme, by Kazadi Mwamba, Principal Economic Growth Officer at Essex County Council
  • ESSLAB journey to become an Export Champion, by Cliff Marshall, CEO at Essex Scientific Laboratory Supplies Ltd.
  • Southend High Street update, by Alan Richards, Interim Executive Director at Southend-on-Sea Borough Council
  • Totally Locally Southend on Sea, by David Elcock, Community Champion

Free parking is available in the Southend Leisure & Tennis Centre and free refreshment will be provided on arrival. Booking is essential due to number limitations. For further details and tickets please visit Eventbrite

Southend Business Survey 2021

Businesses have experienced the unprecedented combination of COVID-19 pandemic and Brexit, all in the space of the past 18 months or so. While the level of the impact those events have on each business varies, the desire to recover and thrive is aligned. In order for Southend-on-Sea Borough Council and Southend Business Partnership to make best use of their  resources to support businesses on the journey, we would like to hear honest views from the Southend business community on the opportunities, challenges and support needs ahead.

The survey is designed with a few short and pertinent  questions, the answers to which  will enable the council and business support organisations in the area to better understand the needs of local business. The results of the survey will then inform the development and delivery of business support packages. The survey will take about 5-10 minutes to complete. The survey will go live on 16 September at Your Say Southend.

Southend-on-Sea Borough Council (SBC) Subsidised FSB Memberships

Southend-on-Sea Borough Council are partnering with The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) to provide heavily subsidised one year membership to FSB for Southend businesses with 0-9 employees. £30,000 has been allocated to the memberships, to fund 80% of the one year membership fee and will be granted on a first come first served basis. This should equate to between 180-260 memberships. The scheme is to be launched the week beginning the 13th September.  Businesses will need to register their interest via the (soon to be ready) Business-on-Sea website

Southend Business Directory – It’s Local Southend

Southend-on-Sea Borough Council (SBC) have listened to local businesses (including the Southend Business Partnership) who have requested a local business directory. It’s Local Southend, a Southend-based business directory and marketing platform, is currently taking pre sign ups. Here is a video clip which lists some of the benefits of being involved with the directory and shows you how to quickly register your interest. 

This will replace the local supplier list that the SBC Procurement Team developed when the directory is launched (later in the year). Council officers will use the directory as a repository for quotes for purchases under £25k, which does not get advertised on the Digital Procontract platform. Join 500+ businesses who have already signed up to the directory website.

SBC Seeking Views on Southend New Local Plan

Southend-on-Sea Borough Council is seeking views on how the Borough should grow and develop over the next 20 years to meet local needs.

Existing employment areas will continue to be safeguarded, with some exceptions. New employment provision is proposed to the north of Southend at Southend Airport business park and adjacent to the A127. Options to develop a potential new neighbourhood to the north of the Borough would include a new road link to the east and more local employment opportunities close to new homes and day-to-day shops and services. Regarding London Southend Airport, notwithstanding the short-term impact of covid on passenger and employment numbers, the local plan takes a long-term view and will also need to balance the economic benefits future growth of the airport will bring to the town, whilst mitigating environmental impacts.

Public consultation on the Southend New Local Plan – Refining the Options will run until 26 October 2021 at 5pm. Tell us what you think at the local plan website or follow us on @PlanSouthend and @SouthendBCOfficial

National Peer Networks Programme

The Peer Networks is a free national peer-to-peer networking programme for SME leaders to collaboratively work through common business issues and opportunities. Following the resounding success of Peer Networks 1.0, the Best Growth Hub are excited to announce the second round of the programme. Sessions will start this September, October and November. There are limited places, so enquire now with Best Growth Hub

Help to Grow: Management Programme for Businesses

The Government’s new Help to Grow: Management programme is a practical management training programme with one-to-one mentorship, aimed at senior leaders of small and medium businesses and delivered across the UK by leading business schools accredited by the Small Business Charter. Designed to be manageable alongside full-time work, the 12-week programme offers a wide range of modules, including financial management, strategies for growth and innovation, leading high-performance teams and approaches to digital adoption.

The programme costs £750 and is 90% subsidised by the government as part of the government’s Plan for Jobs. For further details please visit the website

Free Workshops to Help Grow Your Business from SEBB

The last year has been tough: businesses have had to adapt and priorities have changed. It’s now more essential than ever that businesses learn new skills that will help them not only survive but continue to grow. South East Business Boost (SEBB) is here to help. Join one of their weekly information sessions where you can find out more about their FREE 12 hour support programme. SEBB's 12-hour support programme offers specialist advice, training and mentoring; giving you the tools to apply to help your business grow and develop.

Cyber Runway – Driving Growth in the Sector

The Cyber Runway is a new fully-funded government programme to spark wave of growth in UK’s thriving cyber sector. Innovative cyber startups, small businesses and scaleups will benefit from a new scheme to help them launch and grow their businesses, whilst spreading wealth and opportunity across the UK. The programme will initially aim to support at least 160 organisations and companies over six months. Cyber Runway are currently looking for expressions of interest from potential applicants, mentors and investors.

Government-backed Insurance Scheme to Give Boost to Events Industry

The live events sector is set to get a boost with a world-leading government-backed insurance scheme worth over £750 million, which will help them plan events with confidence through to next year. As the economy reopens with the lifting of Covid restrictions, getting the right kind of insurance is acting as a barrier for some events organisers. So the government has partnered with Lloyd’s to deliver the Live Events Reinsurance Scheme as part of the Plan for Jobs. The scheme will see the government act as a ‘reinsurer’ – stepping in with a guarantee to make sure insurers can offer the products events companies need. Full story at

Reminder: £3,000 Incentive Payment for Hiring a New Apprentice

As announced in the Budget 2021, businesses can apply for a payment of £3,000 for each apprentice they take on as a new employee between 1 April and 30 September 2021. Employers can apply for the incentive payment through the ‘Finances’ section in their apprenticeship service account. This video explains the incentive application process step by step. Employers must apply for the incentive payment by the end of 30 November 2021. Training providers cannot apply on their behalf.

LoCASE to Extend Grants for Buying Second-Hand Ultra Low Emission Vehicles

Low Carbon Across South East (LoCASE) is part funded by the ERDF programme that provides business support through workshops and grants programme at the invention rate of 40%. Small and Medium sized Enterprises (SMEs) in the SELEP region who are looking at ‘green’ projects or Low Carbon and Environmental Goods and Services (LCEGS) firms seeking grant funding for business development purposes. Businesses can now apply for a grant up to £10K, with the minimum grant of £1K.

Most recently the project has been approved to extend the grant offer for the purchase of second-hand Ultra Low Emission Vehicles (ULEV) to the maximum of £5K towards total costs. Full electric or plug-in hybrid vehicles (but not standard hybrids) including taxis, mopeds, motorcycles, vans and trucks within the same emissions brackets and ‘zero emission’ mileage are eligible. The grants cannot cover new vehicles. This offer primarily seeks to offer support to firms who may not be in a position to ‘buy new’ but cannot cover the added up front expense compared to standard petrol/diesel vehicles. Find out more at LoCASE website.

The London Resort – Registrations Open

The London Resort has opened a Register of Interest for businesses interested in a becoming a supplier for one of Europe’s most ambitious theme park projects. Businesses are set to benefit from the £50bn GVA which will be generated from the initial 25 year period. Estimates predict an even greater local economic impact than that of Disneyland Paris. By registering, businesses can take advantage of any upcoming opportunities within the project, which will be looking to many different types of businesses including regional, national and local,to provide a range of services.

We Are Digital to Give Away 900 4G & WiFi Enabled Tablets and SIM Cards

Working in partnership with South East Local Enterprise Partnership (SELEP), We Are Digital have 900 4G & Wi-Fi enabled tablets and SIM cards with internet access which they are giving away for FREE to anyone who is unemployed or has been made redundant due to Covid-19. Their training offer covers a range of topics such as using social media, applying for jobs and creating an online CV etc. Please click here to find our more, call on 0114 551 255 or text SKILLS to 88440

Essex Business Football League Tournament

Businesses across Essex are invited to join a 5-a-side football league in aid of Havens Hospice. Havens are working in partnership with James Sharples from Chelmsford City Racecourse, Craig Kelly from BTMK Solicitors, Chambers Group and Kevin Lockhart to set up and run this new business league and would love to get as many businesses as possible involved. This could be great for networking and team building but more importantly, after the last year of home working, it could be a good boost for team morale, health and wellbeing. To register your interest please email Lydia Plews at Havens  

I do hope the above information proves helpful to you and please share with others and encourage them to sign up for these newsletters by emailing the team 

Published: 8th September 2021