Business News and Events

New Rate Relief scheme for small businesses

Mid Sussex District Council has announced a new Discretionary Business Rate Fund Scheme that will provide financial support for small and medium sized businesses that have recently experienced an increase in business rates.


Earlier this year, Central Government completed a national revaluation of all commercial premises in England and Wales. From 1 April 2017, all premises were assigned a new “rateable value” by the Valuation Office, a figure that is used to calculate the level of business rates charged to the occupier.


In Mid Sussex, the revaluation means 698 business premises have seen a reduction in their rateable value, 395 no change and 3,267 have experienced an increase. There are a range of reliefs already in place to help offset these increases but to help further, Central Government has provided Mid Sussex District Council with £650,000 over four years towards a local Discretionary Rate Relief Scheme.


“We are targeting our support at the independent, small and medium sized local businesses that face an increase in their business rates of £300 or more following the revaluation because those are the ones that have been hit hardest.


“Multinational and national chain companies have been excluded from the scheme because they are better equipped to cope with the increase in business rates and they are likely to occupy premises around the country, some of which will be in areas where Business Rates have fallen.


“On average this support will enable us to cancel out 52% of the business rate increase that small and medium sized local businesses are facing in Mid Sussex. The relief will be automatically deducted from bills for 2017/18 and it will help to ease the burden on local businesses while they adjust to the new business rates.


“To ensure our scheme allocates the available funding in a fair manner, businesses that have experienced the biggest increases in businesses rates will receive more in rate relief. We are also setting aside a fund of £20,000 that we can use in exceptional circumstances to support businesses facing real hardship.”


Mid Sussex District Council will allocate £379,000 through the Discretionary Rate Relief Scheme in 2017/18, with the remaining £271,000 to be allocated over the next three years. It will be provided in addition to transitional and other relief schemes that are already available to businesses.

For more information about Business Rates in Mid Sussex call 01444 477564 or email  

Annual Open 4 Business event

Took place:

The King's Centre, Burgess Hill

Tuesday 17th October 2017

11.30am - 4.00pm


Following the great success of last year’s event, Mid Sussex District Council is pleased to present the second ‘Digital and You’ event under the Open 4 Business initiative.


Who should attend?

Any size of business from across Sussex, from start-ups to corporations


Why attend?

To learn latest insights and develop your digital knowledge arming you with a powerful toolkit of effective ideas, which you can take back and use within your business immediately. Find out how to become more digitally savvy.


What is the format of the event?

Free, presentation-led event with opportunities to meet some of the region’s most knowledgeable and engaging business figures.

To find out more about the event please see

Funding for Rural Businesses

Grants of between £2500 and £50000 are available for rural businesses in the Sussex area. West Sussex County Council is the accountable body for two LEADER Local Action Groups:

  • Central Sussex which covers the rural areas of Horsham, Lewes and Mid Sussex Districts.
  • Sussex Downs & Coastal Plain which covers the rural areas of Arun and Chichester District and Hayling Island.

There is a map of the two LEADER areas and more information about for applying for the grants.

LEADER, Local Action Groups award grant funding to local businesses and organisations to help them carry out projects which create jobs and benefit the rural economy.

This money will be used to support projects proposed by farmers, growers, foresters, other small rural businesses and rural community groups that will benefit the economy of the LEADER areas.

The Sussex Internship Programme 

The University of Sussex is supporting this government programme, which offers businesses access to talented and enthusiastic recent graduates, locally based and with expertise across all disciplines from universities across the UK. This scheme can provide you with a low cost contribution to a project or development for your company that will also benefit the graduate with valuable work experience. You can gain from the enthusiasm, new ideas and energy of a recent graduate; promote your organisation as a supportive employer to a network of local graduates; assess without obligation the suitability of a graduate as a prospective future employee; and gain access to the resources and services of the University of Sussex. If you are interested in this opportunity you will need to act quickly. For more information go to Sussex internships or contact

Need Help to Grow Your Business in Europe?

The Enterprise Europe Network is a new specialist support network for SMEs. Its role is to raise awareness of business opportunities for companies within the EU and inform them of relevant regulations, programmes and initiatives. The Enterprise Europe Network acts as a one-stop-shop offering a range of tailored services to help businesses develop new products and access new markets. So visit Enterprise Europe South East to find out how to:

  • research new markets
  • develop new products through innovation
  • access public sector contracts
  • look for business partners
  • understand EU legislation and
  • find information on EU funding

Online Mid Sussex Business Directory


Planning Policy and Economic Development
Telephone: 01444 477053