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Energy bills @ 2016 rate
It’s four years since the Brexit vote was held on June 23, 2016 and while a huge amount has changed across Britain since then, household gas and electricity prices are now back at the same level, say industry experts.
While the price of shopping has risen by an average of 11 per cent, house prices by nine per cent, and rail fares by 10 per cent, the cost of the best value household fuel bills - which had risen until November 2018 – are now back at summer 2016 prices.
The trend means people who last changed their gas and electricity deal in 2018 are now missing out on huge savings due to the recent plunge in energy prices.
Flipper boss Mark Gutteride said: “Many people believe that energy costs just go up and up, but that hasn’t been the case over the last six-12 months."
The auto-switching service which seeks out the cheapest deals for its members is based at 1 Clevedon Road, Crown Glass Shopping Centre, Nailsea.
Mark added: "The price of the cheapest duel fuel deal increased by 30 per cent between Summer 2016 and November 2018 adding more than £200 per year to bills, but since then energy prices have been falling, and following a big drop over the past few months, the best deals available now cost the same as four years ago.
“We’re seeing suppliers launching new tariffs offering the lowest prices in years and anyone who has not changed their energy provider this year needs to check immediately to see if they can save money.
“Even people on a fixed tariff may find it is more cost effective to pay any exit fees and move to a cheaper tariff while prices are low.
“Anyone who has recently switched will be enjoying much lower bills, but those households who are still on the same deal they were 12 months ago, are now paying hundreds of pounds more than they should be.
"The average household can save nearly £370 by moving from a supplier’s standard tariff to one of the best deals currently available.”
Flipper is the UK’s first auto-energy switcher and prides itself on being truly independent as it does not take commission-based referrals from any of the energy providers.
The site offers a subscription service and manages bills on behalf of its members using an algorithm to scan the market to find energy deals. Members join for free and only pay a set fee if savings of more than £50 can be found.
Visit www.flipper.co.uk for more information.
Third book & still counting
An award-winning author who has published her third book is calling for people to try new things and embrace failure– after overcoming challenges to take up writing.
Accountant and business advisor Della Hudson, who has been named among 20 businesswomen to watch, had found writing difficult at school.
But her first book The Numbers Business, has been named best specialist book at the Business Book Awards.
And her latest – Growing by Numbers, which looks at scaling up a business - has been praised by industry experts as a practical must-have book.
Mum-of-two Della, fof Backwell, said: “I would advise young people and business owners not only to play to their strengths but also to work on their weaknesses.
“I think it’s good to try a little bit of everything and know that there is nothing wrong with failing. Just see it as experience.”
“I never thought I would have become an author. I spent most of my English lessons staring out of the window. It didn’t hold much interest and I was very slow to get my ideas down in writing.
“But I’ve found my own style and incentive to write. I’ve enjoyed sharing ideas in a succinct way, which will help business owners develop their skills and grow.”
Della, who has been a chartered accountant for more than 20 years, set up her own business from her kitchen table in 2009.
She set up her firm after having children and being unable to find a company which would offer flexitime.
Della, who sold one profitable business and now heads Minerva Accountants, which operates remotely, wrote her latest book to help business owners grow their business.
She said: “I have a real passion to help business owners to achieve their dreams.
"Everyone needs a bit of a leg-up and I wanted to create a practical guide that would reach even more people.”
Della has since been named among 20 businesswomen to watch in 2020 by business banking app Tide - and as one of the top 50 women in finance by Accountancy Age news.
She is also listed as a top online influencer by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW).
Steve Pipe, a best-selling author, dynamic speaker and founder of Accountants Changing the World, said the book was ‘extremely practical’ and a ‘great addition to any business owner’s bookshelf’.
Alison Edgar, a motivational speaker, author and award-winning businesswoman known as the Entrepreneur’s Godmother, said: “It’s a must for anyone looking to scale up their business’.
Growing by Numbers - How to scale up your small business with confidence is aimed at business owners in various fields and common areas of concern while growing.
It includes real- life examples, a guide on managing finances and knowing when to bring in professionals.
The book is written for accountants to give to their clients. Business owners can work through it on their own, with their accountant or directly with Della.
Della also offers free money matters seminars where entrepreneurs can get advice and ideas on how to grow their businesses.
A book launch for Growing by Numbers - How to scale up your small business with confidence is on Tuesday, June 30 at 5pm.
It will involve a live interview with Della.
To pre order a signed copy click HERE.
A £1.3 million money pot for creatives has been launced by the government and North Somerset people are urged to bid.
Funded by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, the programme called Creative Scale Up helps creative businesses to overcome specific barriers to growth such as marketing, strategy planning or improving their digital footprint.
Coaches and mentors are available for businesses and specialist help on hand to identify appropriate sources of finance through the British Business Bank.
The programme is open to growing enterprises with approximately eight employees in any of the following sectors:
advertising and marketing
arts and culture
createch (tech that is immersive or enables creativity, for example music software)
TV and film.
North Somerset Council executive member for business, economy and employment and ward councillor for Weston Hillside Mark Canniford said: “This is great news and a great opportunity for the creative sector in North Somerset and I really hope we get good take-up from businesses in our area.”
There is no financial cost for businesses taking part in the programme, just an expectation that business leaders will commit their time to engage with the activities on offer.
The deadline for expressions of interest is Tuesday, March 31.
Creative Scale Up is a new programme designed to support creative businesses in the West of England to grow and access finance.
This is a £1.3 million Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) funded pilot programme which will explore how best to support businesses in the creative industries sector to grow whilst encouraging investment into the sector.
Money pot for creatives
Gossip magazines given short shift by Nailsea beauty salons
Three Nailsea beauty salons are taking a stand against gossip magazines.
The first to join others nationwide in banning critical celeb publications was the SP Hair Company.
A post on the Nailsea High Street salon Facebook page said:
‘Recently we have seen FB posts about salons BANNING magazines that slate and put people down, after hearing the devastating news of Caroline Flack we have decided to follow this and will no longer have these in our salon. Instead we’ll be offering you a selection which will encourage growth and change and thought for the mind. All of our team have been effected by mental health at some point in our lives whether it be personally or through family/friends and are very understanding of this. So please if you ever feel the need to talk to us and be that set of ears you need to just listen to you than feel confident that you can and we will not judge. Be KIND 🖤 We are also open to suggestions of what you would like to read/do in the salon so please feel free to comment your ideas.’
They were quickly followed by the upstairs Beauty Loft and further down the High Street Reflections. When Nailsea People shared the posting on its Facebook page it reached more than 4,000 with a comment urging readers to sign this:
THIRSTY FIRST THURSDAY MARCH
For its next Thirsty First Thursday Nailsea Chamber of Trade & Commerce is venturing to Backwell.
Spokesman Luke Hewitt, of Ward soliciltors, said: "Firstly, a big thank you to the Nailsea MicroPub for hosting our last event and supplying very well received nibbles.
"The next Thirsty First Thursday drinks event, is Backwell House, Farleigh Road, from 5.30pm on Thursday, March 5.
"As usual the first drink will be provided by the Chamber and Backwell House have kindly offered to provide some nibbles.
"The last couple of events have been well attended.
"It would be great to see another good turnout."
Luke reminds the business community that the consultation is now open about the introduction of parking charges for Nailsea and Clevedon.
He added: "I know many are opposed to this proposal. If you would like to have your say, please click HERE."
New faces are welcome, for an indication of numbers email Luke.Hewitt@wards.uk.com
PHOTOS: The 20 team members from Pelican pose for a celebratory photo at the Sunday Times award evening and metering manager Graham Smith and head of credit management Tamsyn Dorrington with Glenn Dimelow, of Best Companies
Nailsea company in Top 20 of Sunday Times business awards
Nailsea based Pelican Business Services has been placed 19th in the Sunday Times Best Companies awards improving on its previous position of 20th in 2018
On Thursday. February 21, 20 team members from Pelican Business Services, travelled to London Evolution, for the annual Sunday Times Best Companies Awards for the 100 best mid-sized companies to work for in the UK.
Pelican Business Services was created in 2001, originally known as Bristol Wessex Billing Services, as a joint venture by its parent companies Wessex Water and Bristol Water.
In 2015, they embarked on journey to develop a new name and visual identity that would better reflect its company vision, mission and business objectives.
Pelican apply their people, customer and technical expertise to support Wessex Water’s and Bristol Water’s 1.2m customers.
From meter reading and billing to credit management and collections, Pelican support their parent companies deliver an award-winning customer experience.
More than 757 companies entered the various categories at the Best Companies awards, who were then ranked based on an extensive team member survey and the Best Companies eight factor model which measures a range of employee engagement areas such as wellbeing, leadership and personal growth.
Some stand its achievements noted by award organiser Best Companies were Pelican’s sustainability practises; including their ban on disposable plastic which has contributed to saving over 165k items of plastic waste since October 2018 and their weekly team huddles and regular ‘Pelican Briefs’, an opportunity to gather together every team member to celebrate key achievements and reward stand out employees.
Managing director Charley Maher – a woman, like two-thirds of her workforce – keeps the whole company involved via a blog that she has written without missing a single week since her appointment almost five years ago.
New initiatives to boost employee engagement include the November 2018 launch of a customer services academy, which provides intensive training for new recruits, and attachment days that allow people to spend time in different areas of the business to share knowledge, build internal networks and encourage collaboration and career development.
Following the announcement of their placement, Charley said “We are extremely proud of this amazing achievement which is something only made possible by our amazing team who approach everything they do with positivity, passion and hard work.
“We have had an incredibly busy year at Pelican focussing on the engagement and wellbeing of our team and have launched several new initiatives such as our Working Parent’s Network, a catalogue of family friendly policies and our Healthy Conversation initiative, a program put in place to work towards removing the taboo and promoting open and honest dialogue on various topics such menopause, body image and learning disabilities.
"These are run alongside our existing initiatives such as our Health & Wellbeing Charter, People’s Council, Community Involvement programme and Pride Patrol, our LGBTQ+ network.”
“We are incredibly humbled to accept this amazing accolade and we look forward to edging closer towards that number one spot in the future.”
Pelican are now celebrating their position of 19th best company to work for in the UK with a number of exciting events for its 348 team members.
THIRSTY FIRST THURSDAY 2020
Nailsea Chamber of Trade & Commerce Thirsty First Thursday (TFT) of the new year is pencilled in for February 6 at Nailsea MicroPub – with the promise nibbles served by Mark Ashman at the High Street hostelry.
This is when the business company meet for a social hour with a free first drink in convivial surroundings to informally discuss, debate and share ideas.
Acting chairman Ian Thompson, of Thompson Commercial, said he decided to forgo the January TFT as it follows hard on the heels of New Year’s Eve.
Ian said: “The next TFT will be at Nailsea MicroPub in the High Street from 5.30pm.”
The April annual meeting is already booked for 65 High Street with the March meeting to be decided.
HIGH STREET: An exchange of thoughts on car parking fees, pedestrianisation of Nailsea High Street completely or just on Saturdays which would allow the expansion of the monthly farmers', craft and community stalls and other activities...
THIRSTY THURSDAY: Nailsea Chamber of Trade & Commerce kicked off Thirsty First Thursday with a social networking evening at Coates House. The next evening is pencilled in for Thursday, December 5. Acting chairman Ian Thompson said: "It's a good chance to meet up with local businesses or if nothing else, a relaxed after work drink in a convivial atmosphere." If you would like to attend email Ian at firstname.lastname@example.org.
PHOTO: Some Nailsea people representing the business community at Coates House on Thursday, November 7
BUSINESS PEEPS: Two meetings this month for the business community. both at Coates House. The first is Thirsty Thursday, November 7, when given all the new shops opening in the town the plan is to relaunch Nailsea Chamber of Trade & Commerce. The first drink is free if you have an official invite - go see Crown Glass Shopping Centre manager Martin Nelmes. The next is Nailsea Small Business Breakfast on Wednesday, November 18, (date change) at 7.30am. North Somerset councillor Mike Bird is organising the early morning event and he says 'lots to talk about including the eat:nailsea event'.
BUSINESS CLASS: Butterfly Travel is hosting a free holiday showcase on Friday, October 11, 4-7pm at Nailsea Tithe Barn. The travel team based at Crown Glass Place will be on hand to serve you a glass of bubbly and nibbles while you take the opportunity to talk to selected suppliers and discuss your next holiday arrangements with the experts.Tickets from Butterfly Travel at 01275 277966.
MiMis haircuts for 'princess'
Two little girls with very long hair decided to go for a radical new style so they could donate their discarded locks to The Little Princess Trust and chose Nailsea’s newest hair salon for the special appointment.
Best friends Raiya Robertson and Ruby-Leigh Whittle, both aged eight, made the decision to have their waist long hair cut at the end of the school summer holidays.
And staff at MiMis Hair Salon at 96b Old Church Road were happy to help.
Since 2006 The Little Princess Trust has been providing free real hair wigs to children and young people who have lost their own hair through cancer treatment or other conditions.
Read more about the charity HERE.
As well as donating their hair the girls managed to raise hundreds of pounds in sponsorship.
Supported by mums Jade Rollings and Katie Whittle the girls made the appointment just before the start of the new September term.
Amy Peace, of MiMi's Hair, said: “I had the pleasure of helping these two gorgeous girls, doing something amazing for others by donating their hair to The Little Princess Trust.
“Raiya had 11in taken off and Ruby had 13in taken off.
“Their target was £400 which they hit, so a big hand to all who donated.
“I went to school with Kate and Jade and offered my service for free and they in turn donated what they would have paid for the haircuts to this fantastic charity fund.
“We were excited to be involved helping Raiya and Ruby do something fantastic and helping others.”
With more than 11 years of experience in the hairdressing industry this is a new venture for Amy opening her own salon and she is determined to give all her customers the five-star treatment.
Using top of the range hair colours by Alfaparf Milano, state-of-the-art sparkling new equipment which includes the ‘oh so quiet’ Dyson hairdryers, built-in massage chair and an eco-approach to energy and water consumption using Scrummi sustainable towel system everything is looking really good.
The re-fit is almost finished and with four stylists and Derma Perfection beauty room offering Botox and other treatments the salon is sure to be a big success and welcome addition to Nailsea.
EARLY BIRDS: Coates House in Nailsea town centre is hosting a full English Business Breakfast on Monday, August 12. Business owners, self-employed and freelancers with a vested interest in the local economy are invited to the 7.30am meeting. Contact Nailsea town and North Somerset district councillor Mike Bird by emailing email@example.com is you are going.
New landlords at Ringers
The Ring O'Bells pub at Nailsea is under new management.
Former landlords Kev and Di Mildon are coming home to run the St Mary's Grove pub in a joint venture with regulars Liz and James Harding.
After seven and a half years former publican Dewi Green is to concentrate on his other business The Queen Adelaide at Blagdon.
This is a pub and b&b from where he can concentrate on his other loves besides good food and crickets with trout fishing.
He is offering tuition on Blagdon lake and producing homemade sausages under the auspices of The Blagdon Banger Company .
Meanwhile the doors opened on Monday, July 22 for the new (and not so new) faces at the Ringers.
Both new(ish) couples warn 'there is a lot that needs to be sorted over the coming weeks so we ask that you bear with us please, however, we are very excited to bring this pub back to the heart of the community'.
On Friday, July 26, they have booked brilliant solo covers artist Andrias Guerin who they first heard playing at Glastonbury Festival to celebrate their arrival.
Keep it small, keep it simple
Plans have been submitted to North Somerset Council for a Nailsea Micro Pub in the old opticians next to 65 High Street.
The proposal consists of the change of use of Unit 4 Ivy Court, 61-63 High Street from its former retail use (Class A1) to a micro pub (Class A4).
Opening hours would be Tuesday to Thursday 5-10pm; Friday 4-10pm; Saturday noon-3pm and again 5-10pm, Sunday noon-10pm and closed Monday.
The application says 'there will be no loud music or live bands' and concludes 'the proposed change of use would support the creation of a comfortable, safe, attractive and accessible town centre use in Nailsea. The micro pub will provide a new venue in Nailsea for members of the community of all ages to meet and bring a vacant unit back into use'.
Optometrists Lynne Fernandes moved across the road to 124A High Street in 2014.
Nailsea People posted the news of a potentional micropub on its Facebook page and it reached more than 4,000 readers with over 100 positive reactions within days.
A micropub according to the Micropub Association is defined as 'a small freehouse which listens to its customers, mainly serves cask ales, promotes conversation, shuns all forms of electronic entertainment and dabbles in traditional pub snacks'.
The philosophy is: a simple pub with the focus on cask beer and conversation for entertainment, with the basic premise of KIS - Keep It Small, Keep It Simple.
Read more about the planning application by clicking HERE.
PHOTOS: Top a typical micropub and the shop when it was an opticians
New Nailsea company for saving on energy bills
The UK’s first automatic energy switching service has relocated from South Gloucestershire to Nailsea.
Flipper, which saves people money by auto-switching their energy supplier, is now based on the 1st floor at 1 Clevedon Walk in the Crown Glass Shopping Centre.
Flipper was set up in 2016 and their team of 20 staff now looks after the energy bills of thousands of households, using their own in-house technology to automatically find and flip them to the best deals.
Flipper managing director Mark Gutteridge said: "Our way of switching energy suppliers is simple, automatic and 100 per cent impartial.
“Unlike competitors and the big online price comparison sites, we don’t take any commission from the energy suppliers.
“Instead, Flipper charge their members a small annual fee, which means we can provide a truly impartial auto-switching service that can flip you to a much wider range of deals, at any time”.
Data from Ofgem, the energy regulator, shows many people are overpaying by £300 or more a year on their energy bills, so Flipper's automatic service
can save consumers hundreds of pounds annually.
To tell people about this earlier this month Flipper staff went out and about with local radio station Sam FM which broadcasts on 106.5 MHz FM to speak to Bristol people.
On the walkabout they handed out more than a 1,000 free ‘energy boosting treats’ including Boston Tea Party coffees, Flipper-branded bananas, energy bars, pastries and pizzas.
Mark said “It was great to speak to people about who their energy supplier is, how much they pay and ask if they had heard about auto-switching.
“We hope do a similar event in the Nailsea area soon.”
WORK COMPLETED: Shop manager Kate Kisby said: "The Works is happy to announce we have arrived in Nailsea. To celebrate this we have a ‘guess the name’ for the chance to win this cuddly bear. We will be doing henna tattoos on Saturday - all donations to Cancer Research UK. Also visit us tomorrow, Friday, July 19, at Crown Glass Shopping Centre for lots of exciting promotions and amazing price cuts ready for when the children break up." Neighbouring bakery Greggs re-opens on Tuesday, July 30. All are part of a multi-million pound refurbishment of the shopping centre.
Pictured from left is Kate outisde the Colliers Walk store with shop staff Chloe MacGregor, Maisie White and Anne Miller
BOOK MARKER: Accountant Della Hudson took a top prize with her frist book at The Business Book Awards.
Now in its second year Della collected her award at an evening among leading publishers and journalists celebrating the power, diversity and cutting-edge ideas of the UK’s business books.Della Hudson is well known in Nailsea as an accountant and business advisor. Having successfully built, scaled up and sold her own accountancy practice, she decided to write a book to support other professionals to do the same. The Numbers Business is a practical, how-to guide – the manual every qualified accountancy professional needs to read before setting up their own practice. Since the book was published in the autumn of 2018, Della has been invited to speak at prestigious industry events throughout the world and write multiple articles and blogs. She also provides courses and coaching for those growing their own businesses.
is powered by
The TEK Hut
The TEK Hut was started by Ben Parker in July 2018.
For 12 years Ben had been one of the team at The ICT Workshop which provided a wide variety of computer services to Nailsea, Clevedon, Yatton, Backwell and even Weston-Super-Mare.
Ben felt it right to continue the same great service customers had previously experienced but under new branding for a new business and The Tek Hut was born.
Trading at the familiar location in Nailsea, The Tek Hut will continue to offer the same cost effective, new laptops and PCs, upgrades, onsite support for homes and businesses through to a wide range of workshop services and accessories.
PHOTO: Della Hudson holding her book, The Numbers Business, at the launch at Bloodhound, Bristol
The Numbers Business
Bookkeeper Della Hudson has written a book.
Della who had been frustrated by the lack of part time jobs for senior accountants so set up her own business - with an efficient 25 hour working week - has started a new chapter to her career as a published author.
She sold her first business nearly 10 years later for more than 30 per cent above the national market average at that time – and has released a book about the secrets of her success.
Della, of Backwell, who has been a chartered accountant for more than 20 years, wrote The Numbers Business: How to Build a Successful Cloud Accountancy Practice.
And Gary Turner, co-founder and managing director of the multi-million pound cloud accountancy software Xero UK, has praised both Della and the book.
Della said: “It can be daunting to set out on your own, so I’ve created the kind of manual I would have found helpful when I first set up my accountancy business.”
Many entrepreneurs work an 80 plus week to build their business quickly and then struggle to cut their hours.
But Della decided to build a practice which used modern cloud-based software, to enable remote and flexible working.
She also introduced systems for efficiency – and this helped make her business more valuable when it came to selling.
Della, who has moved into management consulting and coaching for business owners, said: “Building a business around my family meant that I had to get the work and life balance right from day one.
“I wanted flexible working for myself and my team, so I needed to introduce good systems from the start for maximum efficiency.
“This allowed me to scale the business within my limited hours. We systemised everything in sight and recruited the best people to provide a friendly interface with our clients.”
Della - who is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) in recognition of her commitment to the profession - shares her experience and expertise in a step by step guide for those starting out.
She said: “My aim is to help people start a successful business from scratch, without personal or business contacts, and guide them through the relevant steps.”
The lessons in the book apply to other professional service businesses. It looks at moving from the kitchen table to an office, taking on staff, creating a systemised company and buying and selling a business.
Della, who has been heavily involved in community work such as coaching young people and sponsoring local sports teams, also looks at running an ethical business.
She attributes her success to the high quality team she was able to recruit by offering part time and flexible working, her investment in good cloud technology and systemising everything - from bookkeeping and accounts production, to marketing and public speaking.
Gary said: “Della shares the essence of how she succeeded in today's increasingly dynamic world of small business accounting and advisory services.
“It doesn't stop there - she also provides step-by-step practical hints and tips with incredible detail and clarity.”
He describes Della as one of the first professionals in the UK to recognise how cloud software could improve the client service.
He added: “Her firm's internal efficiency and profitability have shone through at every stage of the journey.”
Della has taken part in various charity fundraisers, including an ironman distance triathlon in aid of the Breastcare Unit at Southmead Hospital (BUST) after her mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. Her mother has since been given the all clear.
Della is also heavily involved in community work. She coaches athletics to 11 to 16-year-olds at North Somerset Athletics Club and in 2014 she was named as North Somerset Athletics Club Athlete of the Year.
In her spare time, she enjoys the swim-bike-run-cake of triathlon, reading, cooking and dining with friends.
AT RISK OF CLOSURE
closing at christmas
closing at christmas
SUCCESSFUL BUT going online
SUCCESSFUL BUT Moved to portishead
High street trends hit Nailsea
Despite the fallout on Nailsea People FaceBook page about the current state of the town centre businesses what is happening in the High Street is a national not local issue.
But when you lose some of your popular retail outlets then customers are bound to be very concern.
Some shops open and then are gone-in-a-flash, hardly remembered.
However, the latest run of closures for a variety of reasons has had the rumour mill working overtime.
While shopping online is blamed by some (even Nailsea Town Council accounts show seven purchases via Amazon last month) we know before they start trading that a handful of new businesses are non-starters.
There is some good news for Nailsea as the inspirational Chic Blooms at Colliers Walk is moving into bigger premises at Crown Glass Shopping Centre and New Look is not closing in Nailsea although the Clevedon store is going.
Perhaps The Original Factory Shop could move into the shopping centre?
And while many complain about the growing number of charity shops they do serve a dual purpose - fundraising and recycling.
Currently on the market is a town centre newsagents and our Italian restaurant.
People retire, trends change, site development who knows what is responsible for the latest spate but what Nailsea People does know is we are all sad to see traders go.
Even banks and big department stores aren't immune from a stall in retail trading.
Massive pre Christmas discount for shoppers
ends Sunday, Nov 11
The Original Factory Shop was established back in 1969 with a commitment to sell big brands for all the family at factory shop prices.
It opened a Nailsea branch back in 2009 after the old Woolworth store ceased trading at 61-63 High Street.
This was a year before Waitrose supermarket arrived in the town and next door was Gilly's cafe and the toy shop.
The Original Factory Shop ethos is its genuine passion for saving people money.
Until Sunday, November 11, the Nailsea shop is having a massive 25 per cent off everything offer which is great news for the Christmas shopper.
Cheyenne Patch who works in the shop said: "25 per cent off is better than our staff discount and we are really hoping that people take advantage of this while they can."
NOT CLOSING: New Look has announced it will be closing 60 UK stores after a restructuring plan to make the chain profitable. Clevedon on list to close but not Nailsea store at Crown Glass Shopping Centre
CLOSING AT CHRISTMAS
Sadly The Blue Room arts and crafts centre at Nailsea is closing after five years trading at Crown Glass Shopping Centre.
As well as exhibiting and selling work by North Somerset artists, jewellery makers and potters it also hosted a variety of workshops.
And owner Sharon Brown investing in a cafe serving tea, coffee, hot chocolate, and Lovely Drinks delicious juices, not to mention the homemade cake when it looked like Lidl was coming to the town and would be cbuilt in the car parks.
Sharon said: "It’s with much sadness that I’m announcing The Blue Room will be closing its doors for the last time on Saturday, December 22.
"We will continue trading as normal until then and all workshops will go ahead as scheduled.
"I hope you will continue to support us, taking this last opportunity to buy from our local artists and makers. I’d like to thank all our loyal customers for their support during the past five and a half years.
"Quite simply, The Blue Room is yet another victim of the decline in ‘bricks and mortar’ retail activity.
"We are not being charged an exorbitant rent.
"Our landlords have bent over backwards to help, including our first three years rent free!
"We don’t pay business rates because the rateable value is below thethreshold.
"We are simply unable to generate adequate turnover with the low footfall in Nailsea and changing purchasing habits affecting all retailers.
"This has been a very difficult decision, I’ve poured my heart and soul into trying to build a sustainable business that serves its local community.
"Sadly, I’ve had to accept it just isn’t working and Christmas is the time to draw it to a close. Until then, it’s business as usual."
TOP HYGIENE RATING: Enviromental health officers inspected the Old Farmhouse pub on Tuesday, November 6 and gave it a top food hygiene rating. The pub off Trendlewood Way has been under new manager since August and has invested more than £20,000 updating the kitchen. More than 60 people fell ill in March after eating at the Old Farmhouse which was temporarily closed while officials from Public Health England and North Somerset Council launched an investigation into the cause. It was given a zero food hygiene rating after an inspection. Now, eight months later and with the pub under new management, the Old Farmhouse been given a five star food hygiene rating by North Somerset Council environmental health officers
Meat and veg menu
The Old Farmhouse off Trendlewood Way at Nailsea has got its mojo back judging from the buzz in the bar and barn restaurant on Sunday lunchtime.
Nailsea People really enjoyed its roast at the weekend at The Old Farmhouse when ‘sampling’ the food at the newly revamped premises.
With three different meats on offer and at least nine vegetable dishes including the loathed or loved brussel sprouts there is plenty to satisfy the carnivores and vegetarians.
And as you will see on the slideshow photos we licked the platter clean!
Landlords Wes and Becci Devonald took over its running at the end of the summer and it is their aim for it to be a family-friendly pub.
It is really friendly - thanks Lani - and the kitchen has been refurbished, new staff trained and the menu updated and improved.
Photos of the carvery taken on Sunday, October 14.
Under new management
Nailsea People is getting excited as a new team is moving into The Old Farmhouse.
A bit like the churches having shared management, a team from the White Hart at Congresbury has taken over.
Landlords Wes and Becci Devonald are in charge.
Becci replied to questions on the Nailsea People Facebook page.
She said: "We aim for both our pubs to be family-friendly as we have young children ourselves.
"It will take us a few weeks to get everything in place properly so bear with us to begin with but we look forward to meeting you all soon.
"We are still very committed to the White Hart and plan to run both as sister pubs.
"We will be spending the next few weeks finding our feet, getting the kitchen refurbished and new staff trained after which we will officially open with a new menu so watch this space.
"We are still serving food from this Saturday and a full range of drinks.
"We know the Farmhouse well as we both worked there a number of years ago and it is actually where we met.
"We will be running the carvery similar to the one we serve at the White Hart from Sunday, August 25.
"The kitchen needs some work doing so we will only be able to offer a temporary menu for the first two weeks after which we will be launching a full new menu which will include homemade pies and fresh daily specials.
"We have our fish & chip van there on Friday called the Atlantic Seafood Emporium and the kitchen opens from Saturday."
The White Hart has glowing 4.5 star reviews on Trip Advisor.
Unfortunately the Old Farmhouse operated by pub chain Hall and Woodhouse, was been closed temporarily in May when 62 diners fell ill with a sickness and diarrhoea outbreak.
Up until that time it had been a thriving and popular haunt for those living on the Trendlewood housing estates and further afield.
The Ring O'Bells is also in joint management with landlord David 'Dewi' Green taking over the The Queen Adelaide at Blagdon.
Keen fisherman Dewi was forced to answer rumours on social media after many fans feared the decline of the St Mary's Grove pub.
He said:"I am still the overall manager of the Ring O'Bells, I am also running the Queen Adelaide at Blagdon.
"Running two pubs is quite tough, however they are both doing well despite a few staffing problems at the Ring O'Bells.
"I took the decision to reduce the food service hours due to staff shortages, however this will be rectified very shortly.
"Drinks service will be exactly the same as it always has been and will continue unchanged."
And he emphasised 'the Ring O'Bells is not closing'.
Since making that statement the Ringers hosted a really successful Summerfest - a slideshow of photos from the event is in Gallery 2018.
In the meantime The Barn at Wraxall House has been boarded-up and deserted all year despite hopes a pub company was interested in reopening the hostelry.
Others watch to see if North Somerset Council receives a planning application for the site which is on the edge of the Green Belt.
Wraxall House is a Victorian property of note and has been a Grade II listed building since 1952.
High Street changes
Lots of changes in Nailsea High Street this week.
The treasure trove which is Beautiful, at 132 High Street, an emporium of vintage and designer ware has a closing down sale - although no firm long term decision has been made.
Owner Sandi MacDonald broke her knee a few weeks ago and has been in a thigh to ankle splint ever since impacting on her mobility.
So, it is with great reluctance, she has decided after 14 years to hold the closing down sale.
She said: “I have loved every minute of running this shop but still have not decide what to do long term.”
We have loved you too Sandi.
Nearly opposite the health food shop Holland & Barrett, at 87-89 High Street, has just completed a refit and further down Heritage the estate agents have been re-branded.
Heritage, at 104 High Street, opened in 2000 and will now be known as Hunters joining more than 200 branches throughout the country of which 11 are owned and 191 franchised.
This is not to be confused with Hunter Leahy at 71 High Street which has been selling and letting properties in Nailsea, Backwell, Wraxall since opening in 1999.
On a happier note the ‘shop to let’ sign above The Arcade has a ‘let agreed’ sign, work is nearer complexion on The Courtyard apartments and the first home at Glassworks Mews has sold.
HIGH STREET: It is three years since the British Heart Foundation shut up shop in Nailsea High Street. The retail unit has remained empty and unloved ever since...but in a more positive move this week it has been announced the landlords have reduced the rent...a step in the right direction. Nailsea People FB reader Heather Stubbington said: "It's bad business sense and all about greed...if the rents were all lowered then more units would be utilised; if units are occupied rent is paid; surely a smaller regular income is better than no income at all? Recurring income is normally the key to a sustainable business. Its not rocket science." When it first opened it was Nailsea Electrical Supplies who moved to Bedminster and for a short time it was a beauty/tanning shop. Meanwhile the health shop across the road is getting a refit starting on Monday, July 16.
Nailsea company is best place to work
A Nailsea company has been named one of the top places to work in the UK in a Sunday Times poll.
Pelican Business Services has multiple sites across the south west but its HQ is in the tall building off Somerset Square in Clevedon Walk.
Pelican work as trusted partners, adding value for utilities-based clients by handling their billing, collections and customer relations.
The town centre business began in 2001 as Bristol Wessex Billing Services Ltd, established as a joint-venture company to manage Bristol Water and Wessex Water’s metering, billing and collection operations, and to serve as a point of contact for customer enquiries.
Today, Pelican has hundreds of employees, highly skilled in every area of the business and deliver award-winning customer service.
Charley Maher is the managing director and Alex Chapman the chief executive officer.
Driving it all are an established set of values that define what the firm stands for: expert, trusted, engaging and helpful.
They’ve been shaped by the company’s history, the work they do and by the experiences of the team members.
Pelican reward their staff with a £500 salary-increments system for initiatives such as becoming a subject-matter expert, taking on additional responsibilities or exceeding performance objectives.
Charley is also the MD of water2business, a non-household water retailer also based in Nailsea, and the non-executive director for Flipper, a national energy switching service based in Filton.
Charley and the senior leadership team have been working hard to overhaul the business into a modern family friendly place to work with a strong focus on diversity and inclusion in all areas.
A article about the Working Parents Network has been penned by the MD and first appeared on the online business forum LinkedIn.
It is published below in full and gives a flavour of the progressive practices in place.
WPN is a group set up to give parents, soon-to-be parents or team members considering parenthood support and advice on getting the perfect work life balance.
This goes hand-in-hand with the launch of Family Friendly Policies which includes a family events policy. This policy is to ensure working parents or family members never miss a special family event such as sports days, university graduations and school concerts.
This group is just another set up by Charley to ensure open and honest communication across the business.
Other groups include a people’s council, health + wellbeing committee and Pride Patrol, a group set up to ensure its LGBTQ workforce are represented and ensures attendance at Bristol Pride.
All of this helped Pelican win the 20th best company to work for in the UK in the Sunday Times 2018.
Read more HERE.
The Working Parents Network - part of the modern day 'staff council' solution...
Every leader likes to find ways to empower their people. For me, finding alternatives to the outdated 'staff council' where groups of team members can come together to explore networks and grow in confidence as well as help shape the policies of the future is key.
We started with our People's Council (now in it's fourth year, and achieving so much!), then followed our Health & Wellbeing committee and champions, who are today a pivotal part of our people plan. This year see's our first year with our 'Pride Patrol' represented at Bristol Pride and then more recently earlier this year we launched a 'working parents network'.
As a working parent myself I have absolutely loved chairing this network and as the MD of both water2business and Pelican I have been blown away at how positively it has been received.
Having met earlier in the year and sharing common issues and crisis of confidences that we all have from time to time we were able to set up a network that shares, supports and helps explore how the business and the people in it can help each other.
This week we met up for a follow up meeting and it was great to hear how the network has supported people throughout the business with personal growth and how confidence has grown through having a wider support network. People were so positive about having an open place to discuss and understand how company policies can support them and a safe place to debate how they could work better for them.
Through having the network and the confidence to talk about work and how to make the most of opportunities we heard about how manager job shares and part time roles have happened. People shared how their confidence has improved in a number of areas and with the summer arriving we even shared top tips about holiday clubs and other childcare that can help ease the pressure of the long holidays! Tony Simmonds from water2business even shared details of the French Centre Parcs where a family of five can holiday for under £500!! #TopTipsForWorkingParents
This group has helped shape our business' 'family friendly' policies, improve our gender pay gap and improve our chance of applicants seeing us as an inclusive place to work!
I'm a huge advocate of empowering your people to provide you with the answers and from personal experience groups like this have been a great way for the team at Pelican and water2business to help shape how we work!
I'm always keen to share more with the aim of improving diversity, inclusion and people's health and wellbeing so if you would like to know more please drop me a line.
Ringing the changes
- Advertising feature -
A lovely Nailsea lingerie shop at Crown Glass Shopping Centre has added a new range to its stock of beautiful bras, pretty pants and comfy sleepwear.
Moonrise is now selling preloved wedding gowns.
Nailsea is blessed with places for the bride-to-be and her party to shop.
From bespoke bouquets at Chic Blooms to designer dresses from Abigail Westrup Bridal to specialist makeup by Vicki Waghorn at The Little Beauty Loft.
It even has the place to book the perfect honeymoon with Butterfly Travel.
And with a host of hairdressers and nail salons for beauty regimes and wonderful venues from churches to the historical Tithe Barn the choice is amazing.
But 'dearly' beloved can take on a whole new meaning when adding up wedding costs which is where Moonrise stepped in to help by adding the brilliant recycled wedding outifts which won't break the budget.
Owner Ziggy Hall said; "Costs can easily spiral out of control when you’re planning the wedding of your dreams and all too often brides are having to work to a budget and look at ways to cut down the cost of their big day.
"Our very own bra fitters and bridal underwear specialist at Moonrise Lingerie have taken the bold move to introduce a modest collection of preloved wedding dresses.
"Store manager Tanya, who’s affectionately become known as ‘The Bra Lady’, within Nailsea, is behind the initiative for the new addition to the shop at Crown Glass Place.
“I’ve been looking to add to our product range this year and preloved wedding gowns seemed like the most natural compliment to our core business of providing a professional fitting service, everyday and specialist bras as well as bridal lingerie.
"We already work very closely with Abigail Westrup Bridal who will be able to offer alterations if required, and I’m very much looking forward to the rest of the wedding season and meeting plenty of brides-to-be at wedding fairs across the south west.
"All the gowns have been carefully priced to be below £299, keeping the cost conscious bride in mind."
If you haven’t yet had the chance to pop into Moonrise Lingerie to say hello and see what they have to offer, you can always just drop in for a quick check up to make sure your own bra is fitted properly, they’re not all just about selling!
Follow online link above to learn more about the Nailsea bra shop.
Invitation to open afternoon celebrating decade of eye care
It’s our anniversary! We’re celebrating 10 years’ of eye care in Nailsea and to mark the occasion we’re inviting you to a special open afternoon at our opticians, 124a High Street, Nailsea.
Join the party
Our event on Thursday, May 24, from noon-8pm, is to say thank you to our customers, fellow traders and the local Nailsea community for its continued support. We’ve had an amazing decade and thanks to you we’re still going strong today.
So, come along, bring the family or a friend and enjoy some cake and a glass of fizz on us! And, during the event we’ll be holding a free, prize draw with the chance to win a pair of Absolutely Fabulous sunglasses - just in time for summer!
Enhancing lives with eye care
Director and optometrist Gerard Fernandes said, “It's hard to imagine our thoughts when we first took over Leach & Jones opticians in Nailsea. Our youngest son was just born. He's now about to leave primary school. We were about to employ our first optometrist, we now are a team of eight optometrists. We inherited two new team members and now we employ more than 25. The financial crash was happening, leading to huge changes in the optical industry, but our Nailsea practice has gone from strength to strength and is a highly respected optometry practice in its own right. I am so proud of the team, led by dispensing optician and manager Beth Dent. They have consistently improved, providing the best customer service and patient experience, enhancing peoples’ lives. I feel particularly fortunate to still be able to run a regular clinic in Nailsea with our wonderful patients, who care to invest in their eye health and eye wear, trusting in our vision and values for eye care in North Somerset. Our special anniversary event is a chance to thank everyone who has contributed to our successful and we very much look forward to celebrating with you on the May 24.”
Event exclusive offer
During our open afternoon, there’s also an exclusive offer for you. Purchase a pair of Danish engineered LINDBERG glasses and receive a pair of £99 Affordably Fabulous glasses absolutely free! Or £50 off your complete LINDBERG specs. *The choice is yours. LINDBERG has revolutionised modern eyewear with its exceptional designs. Gone is everything non essential including screws, rivets and welds. They’re incredibly strong, yet among the lightest and most comfortable in the world.
Why not book your eye appointment now for our special event on May 24. Book online at www.lynnefernandes.co.uk, call 01275 854 946 or pop in to see us. Follow us on Facebook, Facebook Local, Twitter and Instagram for the latest updates on our event.
PHOTO: Nailsea team
* Only applies to orders placed on May 24 2018 and cannot be used in conjunction with any other offer
TRIPLE VISION: Boots Opticians at Colliers Walk has reopened after a major refit promising a new and improved healthcare experience for the community. With a real focus on helping families to feel in control of their health, the practice has two testing rooms, each of which has now been fitted with the latest equipment to support the people of Nailsea with all their eye health needs. Boots Opticians practice manager Steve Horsnell said “We understand that our customers and patients really value having affordable and accessible eye health services close by, particularly with busy work schedules and family commitments. All year round, our expert optometrists are on hand to carry out checks and provide advice. We’re thrilled to be able to provide great care for the local community. The practice has been serving the people of Nailsea for more than a decade, and we look forward to helping our customers for many years to come.” The Boots Opticians team at Nailsea have more than 50 years’ service within the optics industry. Senior opitical consultant Richard Wiseman said: "Caring for our community is, and always has been, at the heart of what we do. We are thrilled to have a refreshed and updated practice that not only the team, but also our customers can be proud of." The practice at Crown Glass Shopping Centre opens Monday-Saturday, 9am-5.30pm.
DOUBLE VISION: Boots the Opticians at 1-2 Colliers Walk, Nailsea is closed for a major refit - more news later...
It is that AGM time of year
Nailsea business people are invited to the Nailsea Chamber annual meeting on Tuesday, April 17, at the civilised after work time of 5.30pm.
It is at 65 High Street and to encourage you to join us there will be wine and nibbles, provided from chamber funds.
Nailsea Town Council chairman, David Packham, will be attending to speak about how the chamber and its members can engage with the neighbourhood plan.
North Somerset Council head of economic development Stephen Bashford has also been invited to also speak.
The chamber needs to elect a new chairman and vice chair.
Former chairman Sharon Brown, of the Blue Room, stepped down before Christmas and vice chair Ian Thompson, of Thompson Commercial, has been holding the fort.
The formal process for nominating members for any role is that nominations should be in writing signed by one member and by the nominee.
The meeting agenda is:
Receive treasurer’s report and approve accounts
To elect members for the officers roles
Any other business
Guest speakers – David Packham and Stephen Bashford
In other news Waitrose community partner Lisa Davidson who heads the Better Nailsea group is also stepping down along with Sally Kingston, chair of Nailsea Businesswomen.
Kerris Harrop has agreed to 'caretake' the role until further notice so we look forward to welcoming some new faces to our Business Peeps page.
Style Your British Summer
The Life & Style summer show is going to be even bigger and better than before.
Expect exclusive presentations from the finest in dining and interiors at this event to be hosted at The Masonic Hall, Nailsea on Wednesday evening, April 25.
Neptune, the inspirational interiors store, will be styling a table and garden with finesse.
The Florist, a new and already very popular and unusual dining and cocktail venue, will be tempting the audience with demonstrations of luscious food and drink.
Jane, of Jane Dare Fashion & Jewellery, and Linda Sweet, of LM Personal Style, will be presenting the new season’s colours and trends from the French designer range, Captain Tortue, and other local retailers, and Agata Leipa, of Your Body Business, will give hints on skin care in the sun.
On arrival guests will be treated to Prosecco or Pimms and canapés then take their seats to watch a show which will provide masses of stunning yet affordable ideas for summer parties and other events.
There will be the opportunity to chat to all the presenters at the end of the evening.
The Life & Style team are confident that lots of extra treats and a draw for some truly exceptional prizes will guarantee a very special evening for ladies of Nailsea and the surrounding areas.
Tickets £17 for Style Your British Summer’ may be booked in advance from Jane on 0781 660 7161 or from Eventbrite by clicking HERE.
About The Life & Style Team
The team of Jane, Linda, and Kerris Harrop, of Cupcakes à la carte, are all members of Nailsea Businesswomen, a group of local independent business owners who share and learn about new and effective business methods and have fun, all in a relaxed environment.
This is the third and biggest event the team has put together.
Community matters to supermarket Waitrose
By placing a green token in the Community Matters box at your local Waitrose branch you’re helping your community.
Since its launch in 2008, the scheme has donated more than £14 million nationwide to charities chosen by customers.
In 2017 Waitrose Nailsea gave thousands to local and national charities - scroll down to read full list.
At the end of shopping people receive a token to place in a box of the good cause they would most like to support.
The more tokens a cause gets, the bigger the donation they receive.
Each month every Waitrose branch donates £1,000 shared between the three nominated causes.
Waitrose Nailsea invites local charities or non-profit organisation to apply or request any voluntary help.
Forms can be collected from the High Street store and handed in at the Welcome Desk for the attention of Lisa Davidson.
Groups as diverse as Nailsea Disability Initiative, Nailsea Summer Playscheme and the Great Western Air Ambulance Charity are among the hundreds who have benifitted to date.
However, some shoppers have been 'storing' green tokens and not returning them to the town centre supermarket so a 'pretty please' plea have gone out not to take the tokens home and to deposit in the plastic in-store box.
St John Ambulance £505
Nailsea Girl Guides £299
Congresbury War Memorial Hall £196
New Nailsea unisex hairdressers
The Finishing Touch – a new hairdressing salon has opened at Crown Glass Place Shopping Centre, Nailsea.
Located in 7c Crown Glass Place, adjacent to Iceland, where once an Indian restaurant traded.
The Finishing Touch is the new enterprise for 31-year-old local girl Hayley Jacobs who has wanted to open her own salon since she started training at the age of 16 at Weston College.
Born in Nailsea, Hayley moved to Weston when she was 20 and lives with her partner, Jamie and her menagerie of cats and the family dog.
Hayley said: "The Finishing Touch began four years ago at Old Vicarage.
"We cover all aspects of hairdressing including cutting, styling, perming and colouring."
The Finishing Touch is a unisex salon and will be branching out to include beauty treatments such as waxing, tinting nails, massages, eyelash extensions and perming, spray tans, occasionally make up and much more.
Hayley added: “It has been a roller coaster of a journey – and one which I could not have done without the support of my family and friends."
I'll 'ave a 'alf - lots of Christmas cheer at Coates House when Nailsea Chamber of Trade & Commerce members meet for pre-festive drinks
New boss for Nailsea business chamber
In the new year Jane Vivian, business development director at Pure Comms is taking over as chairman of Nailsea Chamber of Trade & Commerce.
In the meantime vice-chairman Ian Thompson commercial property agent will fill both roles following the resignation of Sharon Brown, of The Blue Room.
The new treasurer is Dave Hawker who takes over from accountant Della Hudson.
Squarebird director Jon Bird is in charge of marketing and Rebecca Purchase, of Ward solicitors, is taking on event planning with Luke Hewitt becoming the communtations guru.
This is an ‘interim council’ leading up to the annual meeting on Tuesday, April 17, 2018.
The September wine tasting was a great success hosted by Kelli Coxhead, of The Wine Shop at Winscombe, with the catering by Sapore Italiano.
An annual membership fee of £15 has been introduced to cover membership from now and the whole of 2018.