VIP recognises Bexhill succes story

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A social enterprise providing recycled, affordable furniture to low income families was given a boost last week thanks to a special visitor.

The High Sheriff of East Sussex and his wife, accompanied by Rother District Councils’ executive directors, paid a visit to Hastings Furniture Service’s (HFS) premises in London Road, Bexhill.

HFS is a social enterprise and charity which collects and recycles unwanted furniture, electrical goods and paint to sell to low income households in Hastings and Rother.

Five years ago HFS moved into the former Russell’s Renault motor repair garage site with financial help from Rother District Council.

With continued financial support from the district council, HFS has created hubs for creative enterprises, light manufacturers, makers and artists.

The project, known as BAM: Bexhill Artists & Makers, enables these enterprises to get up and running in an affordable but professional space, supporting each other and sharing facilities that would be beyond the reach of each enterprise individually.

During his visit, High Sheriff Graham Peters found out about the work of HFS and checked on the progress on the project and met some of the tenants that had set up businesses at the site.

Graham Peters DL, the High Sheriff of the County said “HFS is a tremendous example of a social enterprise creating employment, training and volunteering opportunities whilst providing a truly useful service to Bexhill and Rother residents.”

Malcolm Johnston, executive director at Rother District Council, said: “When we talk about supporting the local economy, we often think about major industry and businesses, but smaller enterprises like HFS are equally as important to the town and district.

“It is important that HFS gets the recognition it deserves.

“At a time when people are struggling to make ends meet Hastings Furniture Service is not only providing a vital service to people in the Rother and Hastings area, but also enabling other businesses to thrive.

“We were delighted that the High Sheriff of East Sussex took the time to visit HFS and the other businesses setting up in their London Road premises, and pleased to continue to support such a worthwhile scheme.”

To find out more about the project contact HFS on 01424 44 11 12 or email