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Our Hitchin - October 2020
Business Interruption Claims

As you may have seen, the ruling by the High Court means that hundreds of thousands of small businesses will now be eligible to claim after being forced to close during the Covid-19 pandemic, following a high court judgement in the test cases brought forward by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).This ruling also mean that a very high number of businesses will now be claiming. If you have business interruption insurance and have been turned down, please make contact with your insurer as soon as possible. About 370,000 businesses are affected by the judgement and it had previously estimated the value of policies affected by the test case at about £1.2bn. Many insurers had declined to pay out, arguing that the business interruption policies were not designed to cover a government-imposed lockdown. This prompted the Financial Conduct Authority to launch a test case in the courts to provide clarity on business interruption policy clauses, based on a sample of 21 policies from eight insurers. This is one of the most significant insurance court case in years and the high court found in favour of the arguments advanced for policyholders by the FCA on the majority of the key issues. Given the number of claims that will now be eligible, the waiting time may be long, so, if you have business insurance that includes 'interruption', please claim as soon as possible. If you need any advice on claiming or more information on how this High Court outcome may affect your business please get in touch with me by emailing

Christmas Tree Festival
Holy Saviour Church are still planning to hold their annual Christmas Tree Festival, but in a different form. They are asking retailers and businesses in Hitchin town centre if they can offer a window space for an exhibitor's tree or do one themselves and be included. They are in the process of contacting retailers, and agents of empty properties; and have had enthusiastic responses from previous exhibitors. A programme will be published for sale listing the trees and their locations so you can follow the trail, and they plan to have them lit in the afternoon and evenings. The dates are 12th and 13th December, with the possibility that some trees will remain in windows longer than that, towards Christmas itself. If you are an interested retailer with available window space and have not been contacted yet, please get in touch!

Vintage Bay
Vintage Bay has some exciting news! Their sister store ‘Vintage Bay Home’ is opening in 2021 just two doors up from their premises in Churchyard but first it will house an “emporium of dreams”, for three months in the run up to Christmas. Amy and her team have been desperate to expand since 2018 and are excited to finally be able to spread their wings (and treasure!). They will bring you more info on their home store later in the year but for now will begin the countdown to ‘VB at Christmas’ joining the gang in their favourite part of Hitchin!

Hermitage Halloween
Following on from last year’s successful Halloween Trail sponsored by Wood & Stone Floors in Hermitage Road, this month we will be holding the event on Thursday 29th October, during half-term week. Participants will pick up a map from outside the store and follow the trail around the businesses who will have a Halloween image in their window for them to identify. They will then be entered into a prize draw and there will also be a prize for best costume.

Kim Chi Korean Cafe
A new Korean food outlet opened in Brand Street last month. Kim Chi Café serves a vast selection of Korean food to takeaway. From rice, ramen, baguette and soft rolls with Korean fillings to delicious marinated meats cooked in Korean style, topped with cooked and pickled vegetables. Or Korean style crunchy chicken popcorn, homemade kimchi (Korean fermented cabbage) Chicken, Pork and Spinach Gyoza. Call them on 01462 459800.

New to Bucklersbury
Pebble too… Geraldine and Tracey from Pebble Beauty Sanctuary in Bucklersbury, officially cut the ribbon on their new venture, Pebble too... last month. The new premises, just a few doors along and specifically opened for required social distancing, will be used for nails and brows.

Neighbourhood Bakes Right next door, a new pop-up cake and coffee shop has opened in the former Jolly Brown premises.
Neighbourhood Bakes, who already have a following in town due to attending the local Craft & Farmers Market and Hitchin FoodFest, will be selling their delicious cakes, bakes and hot drinks Their opening times are: Weds-Fri, 8.30am-5pm; Sat & Sun, 10am-4pm 

Christmas Market
The Hitchin Christmas Market is an exciting new event aimed at supporting the town by offering the subsidised hire of chalets exclusively to town centre businesses in the four weeks leading up to Christmas. Chalets will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis and although priority will be given to retailers, we will consider bookings from some food & drink businesses once retail slots have been filled. The dates are Tuesday 24th November, weekly up to Tuesday 22nd December and the price is £166+ vat per week. If you are interested in hiring a chalet and haven’t already received an application form, please email:

Hitchin Dental Care
Hitchin Dental Care in Paynes Park are running an offer on Boutique Teeth Whitening at the moment. This includes a 45-minute silver hygiene appointment for £349, a saving of over £90. 01462 451300 or

Update from Savvi Travel
The travel industry – from travel agents and tour operators to accommodation and transport providers – is ready to play its part in your holiday journey once more. Please keep in mind that travel continues to be an unprecedented and evolving situation for businesses as well as customers. As part of this, Savvi Travel and their associated suppliers want to continue to prioritise public health and follow the best medical and scientific advice. With this in mind, it is quite possible that your package holiday might look/be different to previous experiences – for example there might be changes to food service such as buffet options; the hotels might operate self-check-in; there might be fewer restaurants and more limited entertainment in resorts. However, a holiday should still be just that – time to get away and have fun and Savvi Travel are working hard to make it both a safe and enjoyable time throughout each step of the journey. There will be a range of considerations when planning a holiday. All our business partners providing holidays are working extremely hard to ensure that all holidays are safe to go on and that accommodation suppliers have Covid practices embedded into their businesses so it is safe for you to travel. They have very good refund/cancellation policies and when you book your holiday Savvi will highlight in detail all the Covid precautions and financial protection you'll get by booking through them - in some ways, it's never been better to book with very reasonable prices! 

XChange Fitness Offer
There are some amazing deals to be had for Hitchin BID members at Xchange Fitness. Full membership is only £27.50 per month, a saving of £10. This gives you access to classes, Cardio, Functional, Free Weights and Resistance areas, studios, and personal training, plus all other membership perks. There is one-month cancellation and no contracts. The offer runs until the end of October so get in quick! Contact them on 01462 437757