On the day that this edition of Business Matters hits the streets it will be a mere 23 shopping days until Christmas and yet it feels that the build-up has, once again, been going on forever!
John Lewis with their #BusterTheBoxer advert was launched some weeks ago, increasing the demand for trampolines, complete with protests from animal rights activists. All the other large stores have followed suit not least Hastings’ town centre supermarket giant Morrison’s with their advert that boasts cultural references harking back to earlier years! Who won the Eurovision song contest in 2003?
And while we expect the large multi-nationals to throw tens of thousands of advertising budget at the traditional peak in annual spend, spare a thought for your local independent businesses who are competing with the big names.
Tomorrow, Saturday 3rd December is ‘Small Business Saturday’, a grassroots campaign which highlights small business success and encourages consumers to 'shop local' and support the local economy. Despite the extent of the build-up, it’s the first big shopping day for Christmas, but the campaign aims to have a lasting impact for small businesses. You can play your part by making a real effort to shop and buy local on this day and indeed, in the days ahead.
Our town’s restaurants have obviously been preparing for the Christmas season with special menus and offers to entice you to dine out many of which you can find attached to their business features on www.thebestof.co.uk/hastings.
Bay Spice on the seafront has some great Indian dining experiences planned. If it’s Italian you’re after then maybe try Rustico Italiano in Robertson Street or the more established Italian Way, the former offers a great delivery service too. Or maybe you prefer a spicy Christmas meal.
If so, Casa Mexicana will be right up your street. And Walkers Bar in Robertson Street has a special Christmas menu too and if eight or more dine during this coming week, they’ll throw in a couple of bottles of wine too!
Of course, Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without ‘Panto.' This year, we’re sticking with one of Hastings’ favourite themes of Pirates with Peter Pan showing at the White Rock Theatre, from Friday 16th December until New Years’ Eve. I know that tickets are selling fast for this great adventure.
And for the last few weeks, we’ve been running a competition to win a family ticket to see Jaymi Hensley of Union J play the lead in Peter Pan. You can still enter over this coming weekend by simply adding your details to http://hastings.thebestofoffers.com/peter-pan - our closing date is Monday 5th December.
With just over three weeks then until the big day, what to buy for those family members who seem to have it all? Well, here are a few gift ideas. Kings Stationers on Alexandra Parade has a host of gifts including lovely gift-boxed pens and an amazing array of art materials, plus their own gift vouchers. Archer extraordinaire, Adrian Caddy, can host a memorable archery session for that extra special present or how about gift vouchers for a broader indoor experience at 1066 Target Sports, voted number one family attraction in East Sussex. And finally, if you’re after that extra special family portrait, our photographer member Desi Fontaine will deliver images to exceed your expectations.
To contact or find out more about any of our member businesses mentioned above, please visit www.thebestof.co.uk/hastings or email us at email@example.com – you could call too on 01424 858932. Have a very happy and peaceful Christmas!