Still time to enter competition to help launch new business

Contest: Peter Rankin
Contest: Peter Rankin
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Would-be entrepeneurs have just over a week left to apply to the Guild Merchant fund for financial support to open a retail business in Preston city centre.

And thanks to moves from the organisations behind the competition, applying is now even more straight-forward.

Money from Preston City Council’s allocation of the High Street Innovation Fund has been given to the Preston Business Improvement District (BID) to manage a new business competition, with support from the North & Western Lancashire Chamber of Commerce and the City Council.

Grants being made available amount to £10,000 per new business together with a £3.000 contribution to their business rates in the first year of trading. A further £10,000 of in kind contribution will be made to assist with business support services such as marketing & PR. 

The cash will fund five new independent retailing businesses who can best demonstrate innovative ideas and sustainability which will bring five empty shops back into use.

Peter Rankin, Leader of Preston City Council said: “This is a fantastic opportunity for five budding entrepreneurs in Preston to realise their ambition. It will benefit the High Street by bringing five empty shops back into use and add to Preston’s offer.” 

Applicants have until the 31st March to apply at