Posted on 19th December 2018
It has been another successful year for the BHBPA. Membership has remained solid at around 175, with 19 companies leaving and roughly the same number leaving for one reason or another. Numbers turning up to monthly events have been higher this year than in many years before, and this suggests that networking meetings are what business people want and at times which suit them best.
In the early part of the year we met at Hickstead Hotel, Keymer Double Glazing and the Birch Hotel, and all three were busy; indeed the two at hotels were bursting at the seams with members. We heard interesting talks from Mid Sussex District Council’s Leader Garry Wall and from Barclays Bank. At the Woolpack in April for the Quiz Night we had another spectacularly good turnout, with 18 teams competing and raising a tidy £600 for the hospice. The whole evening was great fun for all.
In May we had our BHMB exhibition again, after a two year gap. Once again it was very well supported, with 75 members having a stand on a very successful day for local business at The King’s Centre. In June we had the traditional, delightful and very popular visit to Ridgeview for some wine tasting and we had a huge turnout on a lovely day.
We visited the Burgess Hill Town Council offices for an interesting update on local developments re the town centre and business parks in July, while in September lots of members came to visit Porsche and some had a test drive on the day. In October we went for the first time to Buxted Park Hotel where Barbara Hill spoke on ‘Change Management’, before our traditional visit to Ockenden Manor in November. As always, it was a splendid event, very well attended by almost 50 members and hosted most generously by the hotel management. Earlier this month we met up in early evening for some Christmas cheer with Lance and Dee at the Woolpack, and a very pleasant session it was too!
To all those who have hosted our events, we thank you for your incredible generosity towards the BHBPA. Your support is invaluable to us.
The last report is on the newsletter itself. I have written/compiled 47 editions this calendar year, this one being No 47. The statistics about readership are very pleasing for me, and here’s a breakdown if you are interested …
Received Newsletter – usually between 470 and 475
Openings – Until June it was averaging 190, but later this year it has always been above 200, with top number 229
Total Openings – highest this year is 958 for an edition in November, average is much lower.
Click-Ons – varies between 25 and 70 ,depending on the level of interest for the items of news.
"As MP for Mid Sussex I believe passionately in the importance of a vibrant local business community in order to create and sustain fantastic opportunities that enable people to meet their responsibilities, prosper and fulfil their potential. I am committed to collaborating with BHBPA and others to be an effective collective voice for Burgess Hill."
"“I have belonged to this group since I started my own business, Lea Graham Associates, in 1986. The association has been through several incarnations since then, but its most recent one, BHBPA, is by far the best.
It’s much more than just a networking group, although it is supremely good at that too. BHBPA is inclusive and friendly and acts like a mutual-support society. The events are stimulating, worthwhile and often great fun and I believe most members share this opinion.”"
"“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! ” "
"“We have been members of BHBPA from its inception, and seen the organisation steadily grow and expand into the dynamic entity it is today, bringing positive benefits to all its members.""