Welcome to my website. I document the finest luxury Sussex offers in travel, style, and food. Enjoy!



These days a woman needs to wear many hats to shape a career as she holds down titles such as mother, wife and businesswoman. Sometimes there is no definition between work and home, you have be quite fluid with the boundaries and whilst careers are rewarding, balancing work and motherhood can often be complicated.

Fortunately, ambitious female entrepreneurs with unique offerings, whether they be start ups, corporate or home based are paving the way for future generations. This is a stark difference to fifty years ago, now women are empowering each other with new business opportunities that encourage independence.

Here at The Sussex Splendour we are all about empowering women and with Mother’s Day looming just around the corner, we feel that it is important to highlight just how amazing women are. We have scoured the countryside to find some of the most inspirational women that Sussex and the surrounding areas have to offer and we asked them following three questions

1.    Why do you think it is important for women to support each other in business?

2.    Who has inspired you the most during your career?

3.    What advice would you give young women who want to succeed in the workplace?


Ingrid Nilson - Founder and owner of The Antiques Dealers Fair Limited, organiser of The Petworth Park Antiques & Fine Art Fair.

1. Women can learn from each other’s experiences and by networking across different sectors, important long term relationships can be made. For those in small start-ups in particular, a safety net of like-minded professionals is important.

2. The art dealer Stephanie Hoppen for whom I worked in the 1980s gave me an invaluable grounding in how to run a business - thirty years on she is still a mentor and good friend.

3. Be yourself, maintain a good sense of humour, take adequate time to decide how to respond to things and try to act in a collegiate manner without being a push over.

The Antiques Dealers Fair Ltd, P.O. Box 119, Cranbrook, Kent TN18 5WB

Instagram: @adflfairs

Tel: 01797 252030

art fair.JPG


Dr Hema Santhosh - Founder of Aureum Skin Cosmetic Medical Clinic

1. As a woman, only you know the relevance of the various responsible roles we must play and hence, I think it is so important that we support each other.

2. Karen Brady.

3. Anyone in business should look out for real opportunities and more importantly network with people. There is a lot of competition, yet surprisingly there is even more help. Success will naturally follow your dedication. The business is often not profitable in the beginning, but the most important thing is to persevere. Above all, a well-motivated workforce is the most important asset.

Panacea, 7A Shelley Road, Worthing, BN11 1TT

Instagram: @aureumskin



alice - bee and bear.jpeg

Alice Jeakins - Founder of Bee & Bear Bakery

1. There is a huge amount of pressure on us to succeed, have it all, make it look easy. It's not. And the family support networks in place a generation ago don't exist for most of us today.  We need each other hugely.  

2. Before I started my own business I was PA to a senior woman in the City. She had three children, a brilliant husband, and was at the top of her career.  Her example has been hugely inspirational to me.

3. Work hard, and never believe anything is out of your reach.

Instagram: @beeandbearbakery


Phone: 07890 793393

bee and bear.JPG


Sarah Thompson - Founder & Distiller at Blackdown Distillery

1. Supporting each other in the work environment is crucial. It can be a lonely environment and the demands from juggling work and personal life can be overwhelming. A strong support network, be it from within the workplace, networking or family & friends can provide an inside strength and confidence that ensures balance and mental health remains strong. I have always worked in environments that have been primarily male dominant (construction, engineering, motors, distilling), perhaps I have been fortunate, but I have always found my peers and colleagues (male or female) to be supportive in any role I have pursued.

2. My career is very diverse, which also effects how I am influenced. I am inspired by so many people: my children, husband, friends and I’m slightly obsessed with chefs, bakers & artists. On reflection I’m influenced by strength, creativity, passion and on balance I’m reminded to enjoy life and to live in the moment.

3. To succeed in the work place you need to respect your peers and colleagues, whilst also being strong and confident. Keep one step ahead, plan and be knowledgeable about your chosen area of business, do not be afraid to ask for help and meet as many people as you can. It’s a small world, you never know who you may cross paths with again.

Blackdown Distillery, Jobsons Lane, Lurgashall, West Sussex. GU28 9HA

Tel: 01428 707654

Instagram: @blackdowndistillery



Gail Woolston - Co-Founder of Brilliant Gin

1. Women understand each other. They understand the trials and responsibilities that we each face on a daily basis. So having someone who can offer some like minded support or advice always makes things infinitely easier.

2. My mother, she was an amazing women and I believe that I get my work ethic from her.

3. I would say never give up and always follow your dreams. People along the way may say that something is impossible, what they mean is that it is impossible for them, not you.

Instagram: @brilliantgins


Brilliant Header.PNG

Karen Johnson.jpeg

Karen Johnson MSc  - Owner of The Chilgrove Clinic Ltd

1. Women supporting other women in business is important for the success of all types of companies. When I set up The Chilgrove Clinic I was working alone until  demand for treatments grew, and I was able to offer opportunities to two new practitioners. For me collaboration is key, and working with like-minded women will give us the scope to develop a business that benefits all of us.

2. My career inspiration came from the man who taught me everything I know about skin health and anti ageing, Dr Des Fernandes. Des is a prominent South African plastic surgeon and the founder of Environ Skincare.  I met Des 20 years ago and saw immediately the belief and passion that was behind everything he did.  I learned from this and apply it to my business.

3. My advice to young women starting out is, find your passion, something you love, and you will look forward to every day you spend at work. Learn from experience, and don't be afraid to change direction.

The Chilgrove Clinic, Chilgrove Park Road, Chilgrove Business Centre, Chilgrove, West Sussex PO18 9HU

Instagram: @thechilgroveclinic


Tel: 01243 214776


emily - cocoa.jpeg

Emily Watson- Owner and Head Chocolatier at Cocoa Crystal

1. Supporting and sharing skills between women can help others to realise their potential. Many women feel afraid to just go for it. Being undermined can affect you hugely and it’s often done subtly – some don’t even realise why they feel lost.

2. My creative friends running their own businesses, my Mum.

3. Want something done? Do it yourself! Learn, read, practice, perfect. If it fails, change it. Talk, look around; you’ll realise your friends have the skills you need, ask them. Give things away, don’t be precious about your product at first; it’s going to be different tomorrow. Write lists. Have fun!

Instagram/Facebook: @chocolateworkshops 


coca crystal.JPG

sally - the gun.png

Sally Harris - Owner of The Gun Inn, Findon

1. It’s important for women’s to support each other as there are experiences that only women can relate to, creating a strong network which supports each other is essential.

2. My friends/the strong women around me who have created their own business based on things they love to do are the ones who inspire me & make me believe I can achieve my own goals.

3. The advice I would give to young women trying to succeed in the work place would be to work to the best of your ability & be kind whatever the situation. You might not be where you want to be right now but each new challenge leads you to exactly where you should be, those women around you will help you get there.

The Gun Inn

High Street, Findon, BN14 OTA 

Tel: 01903 872 235

Instagram: @thegunfindon

the gun.JPG

lucy nutrition.jpg

Lucy Sommer - Nutritional Therapist  & Founder of Live Better Lucy

1.  Supporting women in business will only lead to greater success and growth for women in the workplace. Women make incredible entrepreneurs, however there is a tendency for us to lack self-confidence so it’s imperative that we support and encourage one another!

2. My mum! She taught me how to cook, raised seven children, continues to offer a lot of her time supporting charities and is one of the most organised/hard-working people I know. 

3.    Try not to compare yourself or your business to others, clients will choose the person they resonate with the most so rather than focusing on what others are doing, focus on what your clients want and most importantly; be yourself!

Instagram: @livebetterlucy


live better lucy.JPG


Jole Johnson - Owner of Lili Boutique, Petworth

1. There are massive benefits for supporting each other at work: In a professional  environment ‘NETWORKING’ gives you much greater opportunities in every aspect with your job and career. ‘SISTERHOOD’ boosts your moral, opens dialogues, EMPOWERS you thus achieving higher goals.

2. I’ve always been interested in fashion. My family in Italy who are still involved in the fashion industry have  been my inspiration.   I’ve worked hard all my life but thoroughly enjoyed it. It gives me tremendous satisfaction dressing people and ultimately seeing them looking so confident and pleased in how they  look. My motto: Dress for success,  clothes reflects ones attitude. 

3. Assert your role at work! Self-belief! Follow your dreams and don’t give up! 

10 New Street, Petworth GU28 0AS

Instagram: @liliboutiqueuk

Phone: 01798 344 411



Lucy Bradshaw - Founder and Designer of Lucy Bradshaw Jewellery

1.  One of my motto’s I try and live by is ‘Treat others the way you wish to be treated yourself’. I started my business to allow me the opportunity to spend quality time with my son, whilst still having a career. It not easy to find a job that works around the school run. One of my business strategies was to support my team, offering the same flexibility around their family.’. I now have an team of amazing working mums and a great network of colleagues. We share ideas, opportunities, supportive of each other with integrity and respect, to show women can be just as successful in the workplace.

2.   I would have say Paul & Rob Forkan who founded The Gandys Flipflop global brand, we’re a huge inspiration. I heard them speak at a conference, talking about the tragic loss of their parents during the tsunami in 2004. They set up Gandys flip flops,  to help orphans effected by the Tsunami. They talked about finding creativity and inspiration everywhere, keep your eyes open, be collaborative and capture it with a camera or scribble it down. Rules need not apply, being creative is all about stepping outside the box. They had a vision, worked relentlessly and never gave up. Their talk inspired me that anything is possible, with a vision, determination and belief in yourself. That was the day I decided to resign from my job and my own journey began. Their book ‘The Tsunami Brothers’ is a amazing inspirational read. 

3. Believe you have to have passion for what you do, believe in yourself and your product. When I started talking about my potential new venture, I was told by some friends, that my business wouldn’t work because there was too much competition.  I could have just given up there and then, but I didn’t, because I believed in my business and my ability to succeed. It’s not just about having a great product. Customers are buying from you, your passion, your drive, your journey, your experience, your business. Early on in my career, a wise colleague once told me ‘If you always do what you have always done, you will always get, what you always got’ and I still live by this today. Never give up on your dreams - you have to keep evolving and sometimes you just have to take a different approach, to get the results you want.



lucy bradshaw jewellery.JPG


Inger Smith - Managing Director of Madame Jennifer Distillery Ltd

1. It is important for women to support each other and stand up to the media’s depiction of women’s relationships as competitive, bitchy and marked by jealousy.  Evidence from research carried out in single sex schools shows that women achieve far higher results when they collaborate instead of competing against each other.

2. My greatest inspiration was my former boss and good friend Vicki Munro.  She always has her eye on the latest trend, never stops learning new skills and is amazing fun to be around whether it’s work or play.

3. Be nice on the way up!

Instagram: @madamejenniferdistillery




Debbie Scott - Founder of SKN-RG

1. We as women and mothers are constantly surrounded by unrealistic images of women, as a parent I am concerned about how these body images influence my daughter. Women struggle with daily challenges of being primary carer for our children as well as being innovators and entrepreneurs, only other women can truly understand the compromises we have to make every single day, lets lift each other up, pay a compliment to someone, and mean it, if we only ever compete with each other we all lose.

2. My Mum, often she would tell me I can be anything I want to be and there was no ceiling, as a child my mother went to night school even though times were tough, working around childcare, night school and work she persevered. She then went to university to gain her degree and even to this day she supports others and me too!

3. Not every day is going to be easy, all you can do is to be the best you can be every day. We have “Don’t Quit” by John Greenleaf Whittier in the is inspirational when things get tough don’t throw in the towel, keep going as it is at these points of “intense” work and stress that you will reap the rewards. Its not all about finishing first, the last thing that appears on the fruit tree is the fruit.

Instagram: @SKN_RG




Vicki Tulley - Owner and Jewellery Designer at VJG Jewellery

1. Although we are supposedly in the age of equality, the majority of businesses are still headed by male directors and senior management. Women need to believe that they are as capable and have the belief that they can compete at the highest level in business. Women need to share their success stories and wisdom to empower each other.

2. J K Rowling and Kelly Hoppen because they are inspirational Women who have proved that can be the best with determination and the drive to reach their goals having started with nothing no matter what their back ground.  

3. Have a realistic goal and break this into small steps and achieve each step before moving on to the next. Don’t be afraid of knock backs as we can all learn from these and always believe that you are as good as everyone else and probably better than most! A tenacious and strong willed nature will help you through each day... with the reward of a gin in the evening! 

4 The Broadway, Brighton Road, Worthing BN11 3EG

Instagram: @vjgjewellery


Tel: 01903 239574

vjg logo.JPG