Digital banking for businesses: pros and cons

I get a lot of questions about digital banks on my sole trader courses. Are they any good? Are they better/cheaper than high street banks?

FT front page

Posted on 11 September 2020

Beyond redundancy: 6-point guide for creative people

Losing a job through no fault of your own can be hard. But redundancy isn’t the end, it’s the start of the next stage in your life. 

I’ve been through redundancy (twice!) and have been training people how to set up on their own for 15 years. Below are some tips and advice.

We cover all this and more in our ‘Beyond Redundancy: Setting up as a Sole Trader’ workshops. If you’re moving from employment to self-employment – or know someone else who is – you need to click here:


Posted on 01 September 2020

SEISS scheme and VAT returns

The Self-employed Income Support Scheme is a system by which the Treasury supplies a grant to eligible sole traders during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Most sole traders are not VAT registered, but some are. So how does the SEISS grant interact with VAT reporting?


Posted on 06 August 2020

Getting an LP10/Lorimer letter – video (captioned)

Listen to Sandra Coulson, an experienced camera assistant/focus puller, explaining how she got an LP10 letter from HMRC to help her with cash flow.

Read more below the video:
Click CC for captions


Posted on 31 July 2020

Digital taxation – coming soon-ish


HMRC have announced this week how they’re intending to move to digital tax reporting under their Making Tax Digital project (MTD).

In some ways the changes are not that surprising. They’ve been talking about MTD for years. I’ve banged on about it many times.

Reporting VAT via MTD is already compulsory for businesses with a turnover of more than £85,000 per year.

What’s new is their timetable for making all businesses MTD-complient. There are two significant dates, and one vaguely interesting date:


Posted on 23 July 2020

Using a visualiser as a second camera for online training – video (captioned)

This is one for anyone who’s training online.

I’m demo-ing how to use a USB visualiser, and how to turn your smart phone into a visualiser on the cheap.

In the video I’m using:

NB: David Thomas Media Ltd is not responsible for the content of other sites nor any financial advice provided by them.

Posted on 17 July 2020

Support for theatre and the arts

First two bits of good news:

  1. The government has announced a large amount of money for the arts and theatre sector. The headline figure is £1.57bn.
    Investment in “cultural, arts and heritage institutions” ( >

  2. The theatre industry has launched a new support fund for individuals working in the theatre sector.
    The Theatre Artists Fund >

It’s important to look at these two announcements together, even though they are completely separate and operate independently of each other.


Posted on 06 July 2020

Being creative in the age of lockdown

What do you do when your music business is scuppered by Covid-19?

For Sussex-based jazz producer and musician Neal Richardson it was a case of thinking quickly and thinking laterally.

His music business, Splash Point Music, now broadcasts live on FaceBook and YouTube every week.

I asked Neal to explain how he’s managed to keep positive after all his gigs were cancelled in the space of one March day.

Neal Richardson talks to David Thomas (captioned)

Find out more about Neal and Splash Point Music: >
Splash Point Jazz on FaceBook >
Splash Point Music’s YouTube channel >

Posted on 22 May 2020

Freelancing as a limited company: when is it right?

Limited company freelancer

There are a number of factors that cause people to shift to limited company structures. It’s important to consider all of them before taking the plunge.


Posted on 15 May 2020

How’s your webinar etiquette?

Webinar sign

A side effect of lockdown has been a growing familiarity with online socialising, whether it’s a Zoom pub quiz, a family gathering by WhatsApp video, or a jazz night live from Eastbourne via FaceBook Live.

As a trainer, I’ve also spent many hours running courses online using Zoom and ClickMeeting. And we’ve all been getting used to learning and networking while staring at a screen.

But as with real life, some people need to be reminded that you don’t behave exactly the same way when you’re socialising as you do in a ‘professional’ space. Even if you do both via Zoom.

Among the Zoom faux pas I have seen or heard about:


Posted on 03 May 2020