Five a day helps Blackpool couple’s business

Sharen and John Rusling from S&J 5 a Day
Sharen and John Rusling from S&J 5 a Day
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A couple have been enjoying the fruits of their labours after their grocery business continues to grow.

Sharen and John Rusling set up S&J Fresh 5 a Day on Lytham Road three years ago.

Three years ago Sharen was unemployed and facing an uncertain future when she turned to Blackpool Council to help her become her own boss.

The Council’s Get Started service provided her and her husband with the help and advice to open their own company, including business planning, accounting and advertising their business.

Sharen said: “I am passionate about healthy food and the area that I live in.

“It seemed logical to open a business in my local area and do something I would enjoy whilst providing a service for the local community.

“I was fortunate three years ago to find the team at Get Started who provided practical as well as ongoing motivational support.

“I feel I have created something special and am proud to offer opportunities to local people to eat healthy food.”

Sharen and John’s success story is just one of 1,000 businesses that have been started up thanks to help from Get Started over the last eight years. Last year, the team helped 90 people learn to become their own bosses, as well as giving them the expertise and tips to make sure that their company can thrive in Blackpool.

Coun Mark Smith, Blackpool Council’s Cabinet Member for Business and Economic Development, said: “Sharen and John are a great example of how we’re helping people to become their own boss.

“The expert advice that those fledgling businesses receive is really helpful and means that they can continue to trade and grow.

“In this case, I’m particularly happy to see a shop selling healthy food that benefits the community too.

“88 per cent of the businesses that Get Started has helped in the last two years are still operating and in some cases, doing very well indeed.

“That’s because businesses can still benefit from our expert advice and support even after they are up and running.”