Posted on 25th February 2016
This week members and friends gathered at the Best Western Birch Hotel for the second event of 2016, a breakfast meeting generously hosted by the Management of the Birch. On a cold morning in Brighton, I came over the Downs to see a white blanket of frost over the whole of Mid Sussex. It would not have been a surprise to hear of a few people not being able to make the meeting. However, the turnout was amazing, greater in fact than we had anticipated. So credit and thanks to all of those who came along.
For 40 minutes or so, with coffees and teas in hand, and with Danish pastries and bacon rolls to be consumed, the buzz of chatter and networking was extraordinary. We love the fact that so many people now feel comfortable at events, knowing that there will always be someone there who they have met before.
After Steve Powell (Fresh Display) and Paul Williams (Rewards TRC) had saved the day by solving a technical problem, the Coordinator welcomed every one and reminded all of some forthcoming events which needed support. These included the March 15th Quiz Night and the May 6th Exhibition. Great news of the gallant 42 who had signed up for the Warrior Run was transmitted and then the speaker was introduced.
Mark O’Shea is a Partner at law firm Rawlison Butler, who have been members of the BHBPA for a couple of years. He is a commercial contracts lawyer specialising in all commercial agreements including agency, distribution, franchising and supply of goods contracts and outsourcing. He also specialises in technology and e-commerce, data protection, licensing of intellectual property rights and competition law.
In half an hour he gave us four examples of the sort of cases with which he deals, and he delivered the information in a way which made it interesting and even amusing. Among other issues he told us of some of the legal problems concerning intellectual property rights. I suspect that some in the room, like me, were a little baffled at some of the complexities of the legal issues but Mark certainly succeeded in making it accessible and interesting for all those in attendance.
After questions the meeting was closed and socialising continued for some time before everyone had drifted off back to work for the day. Many seem to feel that a networking breakfast is a good way to begin the day, and initial feedback was very positive.
We thank Mark for his input and also the hotel staff for their impeccable hosting of the event.
"“I can’t speak highly enough of the BHBPA. As a small local business we feel very much part of a community and thoroughly enjoy the annual exhibition and meetings throughout the year. Over the years we have built fantastic working relationships with many BHBPA members and every meeting and event offers us opportunities to work with more. This is networking at its best! ” "
""BHBPA is a really well organised and run group, great for networking and benefitting from knowledgeable local speakers with real business insight. Peter brings enthusiasm and humour which helps drive the association forward. I am glad to be part of it.""
"I am delighted to have a long-standing relationship with the BHBPA. Since its foundation the Association has gone from strength to strength and there is no doubt that it has brought huge benefits to its members and the business community as a whole through the partnerships it has formed with the local authorities, Sussex Police and local organisations. It is paramount that Burgess Hill businesses have an effective collective voice."
"This association was started with a lot of effort from a few local businessmen and has proved to be a very powerful and useful tool for our business. The BHBPA has influence at the top level; when action is needed, the BHBPA gets it done. We are kept in touch with all that is happening on our doorstep and will often act because of what is published in the weekly emails / newsletters."