Start Up and Small Business Grants in the UK

10 months ago
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Last updated July 2020.

If you’re starting a small business or already have one and you’re considering funding options, grants can be a fantastic way to go. There are scores upon scores of different grants and subsidies (plus other types of financial incentives) for small businesses and start ups in the UK. Some apply to businesses in specific council areas, some to businesses in specific industries. We’ve compiled loads of them right here including a number of Government and council backed small business grants.

National Start up and Small Business Grants

Here are some small business and start up grants that apply to various types of businesses all over the UK. Many of these are Government business grants.

Name of GrantType of GrantValueLink to find out moreWho is Eligible?
Gigabit Broadband Voucher SchemeClaim money to contribute to the installation of gigabit cable connections.Up to £2,500https://gigabitvoucher.culture.gov.uk/SMEs. Extra funding may be available in Wales or for those living in rural areas across the country
Coronavirus Discretionary Grants FundCash grant to help recover from losses caused by CoronavirusUp to £25,000https://www.gov.uk/guidance/apply-for-the-coronavirus-local-authority-discretionary-grants-fundBusinesses who were not eligible for other Government Grant schemes during lockdown
Broadband for Rural CommunitiesClaim vouchers to cover cost of broadband installation in hard to reach areas£3,500https://gigabitvoucher.culture.gov.uk/rural/Rural and hard to reach communities
Seed Enterprise Investment SchemeSEIS offers tax relief to individual investors who buy new shares in your company, encouraging investment.Up to £150,000https://www.gov.uk/guidance/venture-capital-schemes-apply-to-use-the-seed-enterprise-investment-schemeAll of the eligibility criteria can be found at the link, but some of the key points include fewer than 25 employees, company carrying out a new qualifying trade, gross assets not exceeding £200,000 and be established in the UK.
Small Business Rate ReliefBusiness properties with a rateable value of £12,000 or less are exempt from Business RatesDepends on the value of the propertyhttps://www.gov.uk/apply-for-business-rate-relief/small-business-rate-reliefFor businesses occupying properties with a rateable value of £12,000 per year or less
The Prince’s Trust Enterprise ProgrammeMoney for training and start up support as wellUp to £500 for trainingprinces-trust.org.uk/help-for-young-people/support-starting-businessMust be aged 18-30 and launching a start up
Horizon 2020EU funding for innovative businesses€278 million to 75 start-ups and SMEs – individual amounts varyhttps://ec.europa.eu/programmes/horizon2020/enCriteria and qualifying business types listed on the website
R&D Tax CreditsTax credits130% of their qualifying costs from their yearly profit, plus the normal 100% deduction. This makes a total 230% tax deductionhttps://www.gov.uk/guidance/corporation-tax-research-and-development-rd-reliefFor projects making progress in and innovating in science and technology..
Your project must aim to create an advance in the overall field, not just for your business. And your business must have no more than 500 employees.
Plug-in Van GrantFunds to contribute to the purchase of electric vehicles for haulage and transport companiesVarieshttps://www.gov.uk/government/publications/plug-in-van-grant-extension-to-larger-vans/plug-in-van-grant-extension-to-larger-vansVehicles must meet minimum performance criteria outlined on the website.
The Princes Countryside FundFunding for projects that have a long-term positive impact on entrepreneurs working and living in the British countrysideUp to £50,000 per projecthttps://www.princescountrysidefund.org.uk/grant-giving-programme/grant-programmeNot available for individuals or private farm businesses. Cannot be used to fund capital costs. Eligble projects project must be due to start within the next six months and have to be in a rural area.
Arts Council England FundingFunding for arts, culture and theatreUp to £100,000https://www.artscouncil.org.uk/fundingApplies to Arts, Culture, Theatre and similar projects only
New Enterprise AllowanceA cash grant in the form of a weekly allowance over 26 weeksUp to £1,274https://www.gov.uk/moving-from-benefits-to-work/starting-your-own-businessMust be aged over 18 and have been claiming benefits. This is to support those people moving back into work as self employed people.
Woodland Creation Planning GrantCash grants£1,000 for initial land assessment and data collection plus an additional £150 per hectarehttps://www.gov.uk/guidance/woodland-creation-planning-grantApplies to businesses with a certain amount of land as outlined on the website.
The Grow it AwardCash grant, alongside advice, training and mentoring.Up to £15,000https://www.unltd.org.uk/our-support/starting-up/grow-itFor businesses at least 1 year old but under 5 years old. To qualify, you must have a plan for rapid growth ad have a venture that targets beneficiaries predominantly based in the UK.
Architectural Heritage FundCash grants and advice£5,000 +http://ahfund.org.uk/For registered charities and social enterprises with a limited liability structure. The grants are intended to contribute to projects run by such ventures where the project has the potential to create significant economic and social benefits for a deprived community.
Spaces 4 Change (Ultd grant)Cash GrantUp to £5,000http://youngunltd.org.uk/looking-for-support/spaces-4-change/Beneficiaries must be UK based and aged 16 to 24. They must have an idea for a social venture that will “unlock the potential benefits of unused or under-utilised spaces for the local community.”
Do It Awards (Ultd grant)Cash grant and supportUp to £5,000https://www.unltd.org.uk/our-support/starting-up/do-itMust be open to enterprising people tackling any social issue.
Feasibility studiesCash grantUp to £400,000https://www.gov.uk/guidance/innovation-get-details-about-innovate-uk-funding-competitions#feasibility-studiesOpen to UK based research organisations who can showcase final projects at a national event. Further details on the website.
Community Business Bright Ideas FundCash grantUp to £15,000https://www.powertochange.org.uk/get-support/programmes/community-business-bright-ideas/Designed for community businesses, (incorporated or unincorporated
organisations). Business must have been established for five years or less, and have a charitable purpose.
Government Apprenticeships 95% of training costsUp to £27,000 https://www.gov.uk/take-on-an-apprentice/get-fundingAvailable to a wide range of businesses. Full eligibility criteria available on the website.
Try it AwardsCash AwardsUp to £500https://www.unltd.org.uk/our-support/starting-up/For those aged 16 or over, resident in the UK and be willing to participate in a learning experience.
Community Building Capital Funds50% contribution cash grantUp to £25,000http://www.fundingforall.org.uk/fund_category/community-buildings-halls/For businesses providing of open access community programmes or activities.
Innovate UKCash grantBetween £25,000 and £10 million.https://www.gov.uk/business-finance-support/innovate-uk-grant-funding-innovation-loans-and-expert-supportFor innovation or technology projects. Further criteria on the website.
Media Sub-programme grants UKFree access to local workshops, seminars and industry events.N/Awww.gov.uk/business-finance-support/media-sub-programme-grants-ukFor UK businesses in the film, television, new media and video games industries.
Stand-alone link UK50% of project costN/Ahttps://bbsrc.ukri.org/funding/filter/stand-alone-link/Criteria outlined on website
New Apprentice Support GrantCash grant£500 per each new apprenticehttps://www.citb.co.uk/levy-grants-and-funding/grants-funding/apprenticeship-grants/new-apprentice-support-grant/Construction employers with a combined PAYE and Net CIS sub-contractor wage bill of below £400,000 (as declared on your 2019 Levy Return)Must also have an Apprentice.
Transport and Logistical Efficiencies40% cash grantBetween £1,000 and £60,000https://www.gov.uk/business-finance-support/tale-transport-and-logistical-efficienciesFor companies who use transport to deliver commercial goods or services.
Eureka Eurostars60% cash grantUp to 360,000 Euroshttps://www.eurostars-eureka.eu/countries/united-kingdomIntended for SMEs that invest 10% of more of turnover into research.
Biomedical & Energy Catalysts60% cash grantFrom £150,000 to £10,000,000https://www.gov.uk/guidance/biomedical-catalyst-what-it-is-and-how-to-apply-for-fundingUK businesses or those thinking of starting a UK business, working in one of the two Catalyst areas (Biomedical and Energy). Must also be working with a fellow business or research partner on the project.
Grant for Business InvestmentUp to 35% cash grant£10,000+http://www.grantforbusinessinvestment.com/Criteria outlined in full on the website
Tradeshow Access Programme100% cash matchFrom £500 to £2500https://www.gov.uk/guidance/tradeshow-access-programmeTo be eligible for TAP, you must be attending an event listed on the official TAP Calendar. In addition, eligibility is limited to UK SMEs who are already exploring export opportunities or new exporters where export accounts for less than 25% of your business.

Regional and Local Council Start up and Small Business Grants

In addition to the national grants available, many of which are listed above, some local councils and regions have grants specifically for businesses set up there. This is by no means an exhaustive such list but is intended as a starting point for your research.

AreaName of GrantType of GrantValueLink to find out more
Adur & WorthingSmall Business Growth GrantCash grantGrants of up to £2,500 are available, with a 50% match funding contribution required (exclusive of VAT).https://www.adur-worthing.gov.uk/businesses/support-and-funding/grants-and-funding/#small-business-grant-funding
BroadlandStart- up GrantCash Grant£750https://www.broadland.gov.uk/info/200142/business_support/188/apply_for_a_business_grant
BroadlandEnterprise GrantCash GrantUp to £750https://www.broadland.gov.uk/info/200142/business_support/188/apply_for_a_business_grant
ChorleyChorley Business Investment for Growth (BIG) GrantCash GrantUp to £10,000https://chorley.gov.uk/Documents/Business/1.%20Chorley%20BIG%20-Guidance%20Notes%20-%20Revised%207.18.pdf
Coventry and WarwickshireThe Coventry and Warwickshire Green Business Programme Energy Efficiency GrantCash Grant40% of the cost of installing energy efficiency measures between £1,000 and £50,000coventry.gov.uk/info/240/coventry_and_warwickshire_green_business_programme/2972/coventry_and_warwickshire_green_business_programme/3
East SussexEast Sussex Invest 6Cash GrantUp to £25,000https://www.eastsussex.gov.uk/business/developing/finance/grants/
ElmbridgeBusiness Grant SchemeCash Grant90% of the eligible costsfile:///C:/Users/helen/Downloads/ECIF%20Application%20Guidance%20Notes.pdf
Derbyshire and NottinghamshireEnergy for Business – Derbyshire and NottinghamshireEnergy efficiency Granthttps://www.nottingham.ac.uk/research/research-areas/energy-technologies/business-support/grant-scheme/index.aspx
Arun Valley areaArun Valley Business GrantCash GrantUp to £2,000https://www.arun.gov.uk/leap
Blaenau Gwent CountyBlaenau Gwent County BG Kick Start Grant Scheme50% matched fundingUp to £2,000https://www.blaenau-gwent.gov.uk/fileadmin/documents/Business/Starting_a_business/KickStart-ENG.pdf
Caerphilly Caerphilly Business Development GrantCash towards equipmentUp to £2,000https://www.caerphilly.gov.uk/Business/Business-grants-and-funding/Business-development-grant
Chichester Chichester District Council Grant ProgrammeCash grantFrom £1,000 up to a maximum not stipulatedhttps://www.chichester.gov.uk/grants
Chorley Chorley Shop Front Improvement GrantCash contribution75% of the project costs to a maximum of £10,000.https://chorley.gov.uk/Pages/AtoZ/Business-Advice-and-Support.aspx
ChorleyReloction GrantCash grantUp to £25,000https://chorley.gov.uk/Pages/AtoZ/Business-Advice-and-Support.aspx
WarwickshireInvestment fundCash grantBetween £1,000 and £50,000https://www.coventry.gov.uk/investmentfund
WarwikshireInnovation ProgrammeCash grantBetween £1,000 and £5,000https://www.coventry.gov.uk/innovation
East Sussex East Sussex Invest 4Cash grantBetween £15,000 and £25,000https://www.eastsussex.gov.uk/business/developing/finance/grants/
ElmbridgeCivic Improvement FundCash grantBetween £5,000 and £15,000https://www.gov.uk/business-finance-support/civic-improvement-fund-ecif-elmbridge
Hartlepool Hartlepool Enterprise Development FundCash grantBetween £2,000 and £5,000https://investinhartlepool.co.uk/business-information/financial-assistance
Hartlepool Business Security GrantCash grant towards securityUp to £2,500https://investinhartlepool.co.uk/business-information/financial-assistance
Worcestershire, Telford, and ShropshireBusiness Energy EfficiencyFree energy efficiency assessments which could lead to Cash grants40% up to £50,000http://www.worcestershire.gov.uk/info/20289/business_energy_efficiency_programme/1190/business_energy_efficiency_programme
Norfolk and SuffolkNew Anglia Small Grants SchemeCash Grant – 20% of total cost of any projectBetween £1,000 and £25,000https://www.newangliagrowthhub.co.uk/funding-finance/
FlintshireReAct for BusinessesCash grantUp to £2,080http://www.flintshire.gov.uk/en/Business/Advice-and-guidance/Funding-your-business.aspx
Hambleton District, YorkshireBusiness Network Support FundCash grantUp to £4,000https://www.hambleton.gov.uk/info/20046/grants_and_funding/617/business_network_support_fund
LincolnshireGreater Lincolnshire Growth FundCash grantBetween £150,000 and £500,000https://www.greaterlincolnshirelep.co.uk/funding-and-projects/other-funding/greater-lincolnshire-growth-fund/
Mansfield Mansfield Market Grant12 months rent for market stallnon monataryhttps://www.mansfield.gov.uk/local-business/trading-mansfield-market-1
Newport CityVacant Commercial Floor Space Grant50% match fundingUp to £6,000http://www.newport.gov.uk/en/Business/Financial-assistance/Grants/Vacant-commercial-floor-space-grant.aspx
Coventry and WarwickshireBusiness Support ProgrammeCash grantBetween £1,000 and £10,000https://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/directory-record/4/coventry-and-warwickshire-business-support-programme
South Holland LincolnshireLicolnshire Grants 4 GrowthCash grantBetween £1,000 and £25,000 http://grants4growth.sholland.gov.uk/
Andover and RomseyIndependent Retail GrantCash grants to cover rent£1,000https://www.testvalley.gov.uk/business/businessgrantsandsupport/grantsandfunding/independent-retailer-grant
Barrow-in-FurnessFIFE Investment FundCash grantUp to £10,000https://www.businessgatewayfife.com/financial-support-to-businesses
Cheshire West and ChesterBusiness Start-Up Grant SchemeCash grant£250cheshirewestandchester.gov.uk/business/business.aspx
ChorleyStarting in Business GrantCash grant£750https://chorley.gov.uk/Pages/AtoZ/Business-Advice-and-Support.aspx
Elmbridge BoroughElmbridge Start-Up FundCash grant£1,000https://www.elmbridge.gov.uk/business/support-for-businesses/start-up-fund/
Lincolnshire Growing Graduate EnterpriseCash grantUp to £2,500https://www.businesslincolnshire.com/explore/funding/search/growing-graduate-enterprise-growth-lincolnshire/
LincolnshireInnovation Programme for Greater LincolnshireVouchers Between £1,000 and £10,000https://productivityprogramme.co.uk/
Malvern Hills WorcestershireMalvern Hills Business Start-Up GrantCash grantUp to £750https://www.malvernhills.gov.uk/business-support-and-jobs
Mansfield Mansfield Business Start-Up GrantCash grantUp to £1,000http://invest.ashfield-mansfield.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/Business-Start-Up-Grant-Scheme-Guidance.pdf
Newport CityStart-up Business GrantsCash grantUp to £1,500http://www.newport.gov.uk/en/Business/Financial-assistance/Grants/Start-up-business-grants.aspx
Reigate and BansteadReigate & Banstead Business Support GrantCash grantUp to £1,000http://www.reigate-banstead.gov.uk/info/20052/business_in_the_borough/182/how_we_can_support_your_business/4
ScarboroughScarborough Business start-up grantsCash grantUp to £1,000https://www.scarborough.gov.uk/home/business-licensing-and-grants/grants/business-development-grants
HampshireBusiness Incentive GrantCash grant£750https://www.testvalley.gov.uk/business/businessgrantsandsupport/grantsandfunding/businessincentivegrant
MerseysideMerseyside Regenerus startup grantCash grant plus business advice£250http://www.regenerus.org.uk/
ScarboroughBusiness Development Grant SchemeCash grantUp to £1,000https://www.scarborough.gov.uk/home/business-licensing-and-grants/grants/business-development-grants
Orkney IslandsGrants for New Businesses in OrkneyCash grantUp to £1,000https://www.orkney.gov.uk/Service-Directory/B/business-gateway.htm
Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Greater LincolnshireNBV Grant for New BusinessesCash grantBetween £1,000 and £2,500https://nbv.co.uk/start-up/grant-new-business/
CumbriaCumbria Business Startup Support ProgrammeCash grant and free trainingUp to £2,000https://cumbriagrowthhub.co.uk/business-start-up/start-up-support/business-start-support-scheme-bsus
West LindseyGainsborough Feasibility FundCash grantUp to £5,000https://www.west-lindsey.gov.uk/my-business/west-lindsey-feasibility-fund/
Worcester CityBusiness Growth GrantCash grantBetween £1,000 and £3,000https://www.worcester.gov.uk/business/business-growth-grant
West SussexCoast to Capital Grant Funding40% match funded cash grantBetween £40,000 and £170,000https://www.coast2capital.org.uk/west-sussex-leader-grants/
NottinghamshireN2 Business Growth Fund20% of project cost£100,000 and overhttps://www.creativequarter.com/work/business-support/finance/n2-business-growth-fund
North Yorkshire and East YorkshirePAPI40% cash grantBetween £8,000 and £20,000https://york.papi.org.uk/apply/eligibility/
North East EnglandNorth East Business Support Fund35% cash grantUp to £2,800https://www.nbsl.org.uk/nebsf/northumberland/grants
LancashireLancashire Manufacturing Growth Fund36% cash grantUp to £5,400https://www.boostbusinesslancashire.co.uk/support/lancashire-manufacturing-growth-fund/
LeedsAD:VENTURE50% cash grantBetween £1,000 and £2,500https://ad-venture.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/Public-Guidance_AdVenture_Grants2018V2.1.pdf
Northern IrelandSkills Advancement Grant50% of eligible external training and travel costsUp to £10,000https://www.nibusinessinfo.co.uk/business-support/skills-advancement-grant
Northern IrelandBrexit Readiness VouchersFinancial support towards professional advice in relation to Brexit matters.Up to £2,000https://www.nibusinessinfo.co.uk/business-support/brexit-readiness-vouchers
NottinghamshireBig House CDI Grant icon25% cash grantBetween £1,000 and £2,500https://nbv.co.uk/the-big-house-cdi-grant/
HumberGrowing the HumberCash grantBetween £5,000 and £500,000https://www.humberlep.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/12/Growing-the-Humber-Programme-Guidance.pdf
Isle of WightIsle of Wight Rural SME Fund50% cash match grantBetween £2,500 and £50,000http://www.naturalenterprise.co.uk/pages/economic/110-the-isle-of-wight-sme-fund
EastleighIncentive to Grow GrantCash grantUp to £1,000https://www.eastleigh.gov.uk/business/support-for-businesses/autumn-2019-business-grants
LincolnshireGrowing Enterprise GrantCash grantBetween £1,000 and £2,500https://www.businesslincolnshire.com/explore/funding/search/growing-enterprise-grant-for-enterprise/
North WarwickshireWarwickshire County Council Growth FundCash grantBetween £5,000 and £35,000https://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/directory-record/1/warwickshire-county-council-growth-fund
NorthamptonshireNorthamptonshire Digital Enhancement ProgrammeCash grantUp to £5,000. 50%match fundedhttps://www3.northamptonshire.gov.uk/councilservices/business-and-economy/our-projects/Pages/northamptonshire-digital-enhancement-project.aspx
RochdaleThe Rochdale Apprenticeship Progression GrantApprentice funding£1,000 per apprenticehttp://www.rochdale.gov.uk/apprentices
North East, North West, Midlands, Yorkshire and Humber, East Midlands, South East and South WestFood Processing GrantsCash grantMinimum £20,000https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/rdpe-growth-programme
Allerdale Borough, CumbriaSocial Impact Investment Fund Grant SchemeCash grantUp to £10,000https://www.allerdale.gov.uk/en/grants/siif/
Herefordshire, Cambridgeshire, Suffolk, Norfolk and BedfordshireEvalu8 Low Carbon TransportFree Consultancy on low carbon transport technology£1,000 worth of consultancyhttp://evalu8-ti.org/
Aylesbury ValeBusiness Startup GrantCash grantUp to £3,000https://www.aylesburyvaledc.gov.uk/section/starting-growing-or-moving-your-business-vale
D2N2 Business Investment Fund35% of project costCash grant£3,500 to £20,000https://www.highpeak.gov.uk/article/4627/D2N2-Business-Investment-Fund

Any other start up or small business grants we should know about? Let us know!

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