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Actor turns Staffordshire drinks entrepreneur with county council backing
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Actor turns Staffordshire drinks entrepreneur with county council backing

An actor who has moved to Staffordshire from Australia has sought to bring sunshine back and hone his entrepreneurial skills through a new business backed by the county council.

Christian Heath, who starred in Neighbours and has various stage and screen credits, has set up Sunnyside Drinks Co, launching a range of Aussie-inspired premium alcoholic drinks onto the market.

He has benefited from Get Started – the fully-funded business start-up programme run by Staffordshire County Council. Practical help was offered through Accounting Insight; local financial experts commissioned to support any start up or side-businesses up to two years old to grow.

Christian, from Stafford, said:

“I’ve always had an entrepreneurial background, but I’m also a big believer in sticking to what you’re good at and getting help for what you’re not.

“I had some one-to-one sessions from Get Started which covered everything I needed to know in terms of market research, finance and business planning, and then it all came together into a business plan. They’re now following up with a full financial forecast for me.  

“For me it was a real launch pad because it made me feel far more comfortable with moving forward. People can be easily put off from setting up their business because of the things they need to do that is outside of their comfort zone.

“Now I feel like I’m on a very firm footing and have all the bases covered.’’

Get Started also helped Christian to access the informal support of other business people in Staffordshire.  

“I am very fortunate to be starting this business in Staffordshire with the help of Get Started.  They’ve been instrumental in helping me meet like-minded people and getting the fundamentals right for my business.”

Any business under two years old, whether that’s a start-up business or a business that supplements a main source of income, can apply to the start-up scheme.

Logo and website design and improvements, or financial guidance and planning is now available for a limited time only. More information is available at

Staffordshire County Council’s deputy leader and cabinet member for economy and skills Philip White said:

“Get Started has supported hundreds of start-up businesses across Staffordshire – boosting the local economy and helping to create jobs.
“We recognise that many people would love to start up their own business but sometimes do not have confidence in themselves or their skills. We’ve seen a broad range of people from different back grounds benefit from actors to ex-prison officers which is encouraging.

“The Get Started scheme really assists in making business ideas flourish. 

“It’s great to see the difference this support has made to Christian’s business and others, and we wish him every success in the future.”