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Newhaven Enterprise Centre
Basepoint Business Centres provide high quality managed office space with flexible “easy in, easy out” terms that are ideal for small to medium sized businesses. The company is passionate about the idea of building business communities that add value to their local areas. As such, all of Basepoint’s centres host events to encourage and support SMEs, including the ‘Networking Hub’ – a free, informal business networking event open to licensees and local businesses, which encourages the growth and development of its business community. A unique concept in its field, Basepoint is also owned by leading UK grant making charity, The ACT Foundation, and all of the profits generated by its business centres are donated to charitable causes which assist society’s most vulnerable.
The Basepoint operated Newhaven Enterprise Centre first opened its doors in November 2007, and over the past six years it has maintained a high level of occupancy. The centre comprises a total of 46 units, and with 37 companies currently occupying 45 of the units, it is proving to be a thriving hub at the centre of the local business community. Its licensees include a number of businesses from a wide range of sectors, including security services, health and safety, bookkeepers, IT, and renewable energy. With small furnished incubator units for start-ups; workshops, and larger units aimed at businesses that employ one to ten people, the business accommodation is flexible.
The centre is designed to a high specification and its harbour-side location makes it an enjoyable place to work. Located on Denton Island and adjoining the town centre, it is easily accessible by road, public transport, and even by sea – the town has a regular ferry service to France. Among the facilities included are free parking, meeting rooms, and a successful on-site gym. Newhaven is situated midway between Brighton and Eastbourne, about five miles south of Lewes.
The Newhaven Enterprise Centre also proudly sponsors a locally based charity, FitzRoy Newhaven, (www.fitzroy.org), which supports adults with physical and learning disabilities.
For more information on Basepoint, please visit: www.basepoint.co.uk or call 01753 853515.
Phil Lewin, Woody’s Bar & Grill / Golf at Peacehaven
As you drive east along the Brighton Road towards Newhaven you’ll find nestled on the top of a hill a building with flags hailing ‘Golf @ Peacehaven’, ‘Woody’s Bar & Grill’ and ‘Whites Fitness Suite’. It’s here that we meet the proprietor of this hidden gem and our interviewee for today, Phil Lewin.
Phil, a PGA Golf Professional himself, took on the previously member owned ‘Peacehaven Golf Course’ back in April 2007, and here he explains the thinking behind the concept of the three elements of the business that we see today.
After assessing the business models and understanding who their market audience was, Phil and his business partner, Ben Porter, tailored the 3 different business’s to what they believed their customers wanted. “We decided it had to be more than just a golf course so although we are committed to looking after our existing members we also needed to provide a brand new membership scheme where playing golf became more affordable for the whole community and based around the flexibility of paying a discounted fee only when they decide to play. We are also not ‘exclusive’, we welcome everyone, we don’t even have a dress code as such – look, I’m wearing jeans!
In developing the clubhouse to be more than just a building for golfers, we created ‘Woody’s Bar & Grill’ to attract breakfast, lunches, snacks and special functions and parties. It’s important to make people feel comfortable when they come here to eat and drink. A passer-by will not drop into a golf club for lunch so we had to make the dining experience separate from the golf so the décor of the lounge and restaurant reflect this message.”
There is also the well-equipped ‘Whites Fitness Suite’ which sets out to offer the most affordable and flexible membership scheme in the locality. With a set up of effectively three separate businesses, promotion of them is done independently. This makes them focused at attracting people to enjoy the restaurant or the gym without feeling they have to be members of the golf club.
As well as overseeing their Newhaven business, Phil and Ben run a golf academy business in Spain as well as a business providing GPS solutions for golf resorts across Europe and the Middle East. The GPS systems allow the golfer to view a graphic of each hole with exact distance information to all points on the course, such as the flag position and distances to all hazards whilst they are playing.
Phil has a refreshingly positive approach to business, though his feet are remain firmly on the ground, “As a business owner, what’s important right now is cash, cash and cash! If nothing else keep your eye on the cash flow every week and know your numbers. Also you should try and keep upping your game, bringing in new ideas and actually monitor the results.” Indeed Phil’s philosophy extends to his marketing and promotional activities, “try and make sure you are consistent in what you deliver and that the customer always has a good experience as possible.”
“Our customers are our most effective advertising, so if we care for them then there is a good chance that others will get to hear about us.”
An easy thing to say and sometimes hard to achieve but with this kind of enthusiasm and positivity it’s easy to see why the grass is green over here!
Woody’s Bar & Grill
Newhaven weekly market every Thursday and Saturday in the high street.
The Newhaven Chamber of Commerce Networking Breakfast Club meets weekly and is an excellent way to meet new customers and suppliers for your business.
12 April – Julia Johnson – Fine Marketing
19 April – Jon Whitehead – Cleankill
26 April – Jessica Hylands – Confidence Coach
Market stall hire
The Newhaven Chamber of Commerc offer a market stall hire service for up to 25 market stalls, ideal for farmers markets, town markets, county shows, fetes, festivals and many other types of events.