SMALL businesses from across Winchester made their way to the Guildhall to hear expert advice on how to be successful.

Marketing company Vistaprint was the host, and 84 local businesses attended ranging from florists to web designers.

The ‘Vistaprint Night School’ on Wednesday, June 11, saw expert speakers take to the stage, including founder of organic chocolate empire Green & Black’s, Jo Fairley, who gave business owners her advice.

She said: “The best characteristic for any aspiring entrepreneur is ‘sticktoitness’, which means sticking with it through adversity. I know how it feels to start and grow your own business and for me, the risk of not doing it was far greater than the risk of doing it.”

There was also the opportunity to network, and take part in one-on-one sessions.

Vistaprint teamed up with Winchester Business Improvement District (BID), and the event comes following research with PopUp Britain, which revealed that 93 per cent of small business owners would benefit from free marketing advice.

It also found that 68 per cent would like access to experts.

Steve O’Brien, global PR director at Vistaprint, said: “Our aim with the Vistaprint Night School initiative is to inspire small business owners and offer tangible advice through experts who understand the peaks and troughs of starting and running your own business. It was a real pleasure to bring this concept to Winchester and we were overwhelmed with the tenacity of the small business owners in this area.”