Boost to grants for Winchester businesses

Press Release: 28/04/2015

Winchester City Council has increased the value of its popular business grants in response to demand from local businesses. The council has increased business start-up and micro business development grants from £1,000 per business to up to £3,000 per business.

Kate Cloud, Winchester City Council’s Head of Economy and Arts, said:

We were regularly receiving requests from businesses to help fund business expenditure in excess of £1,000. We therefore decided to increase the amount of grant available to enable local businesses to grow and prosper.

There is also financial support aimed at apprentices and long-term job-seekers in the Winchester District.

Applications may be made at http://www.winchester.gov.uk/business or by contacting Winchester City Council’s Economy and Arts team at businessgrants@winchester.gov.uk

The Business Start-Up Grant is a one-off payment of up to £3,000 to help start-up a business. Applicants, whose business must be located in the Winchester area, must have been trading for less than six months.

Small businesses of one to nine employees that are more established and wish to take themselves to the next stage of their development can apply for a Micro Business Development Grant. They might include: purchases of IT equipment, website design, recruitment costs, help with relocation costs to expand the business or anything else which is essential for developing a micro business.

The Council’s Access to Work Grants for Job-Seekers are designed to remove some of the most common barriers which might prevent the job-seeker from taking on their role. The one-off grants have been used for the costs of transport to the workplace as well as essential equipment such as tools or work clothes. The grant can only be used for items that are not usually provided by an employer.

Applicants for the job-seekers grant must live in the Winchester City Council area, provide evidence that they have been offered a permanent job and have been unemployed for more than six months prior to being offered a job. They should also have been receiving Job-Seekers Allowance, Employment and Support Allowance or Income Support.

The Council’s apprentice scheme allocates grants to apprentices to cover some basic costs which might otherwise be difficult to finance. These range from a simple set of work clothes to the cost of travel to the work place or training venue each week.

Applicants must live within the Winchester District and the grant can potentially be used for any cost to the employee of taking on their apprenticeship which is not reasonably met by their wages, benefits, training provider, employer or other grants.