Business support is available for businesses starting up, expanding or re-locating to Somerset.
Advice, guidance and signposting
Somerset is part of the Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership (often abbreviated to HoSW LEP). The LEP operates a Heart of the South West Growth Hub Service which provides independent diagnosis and referrals to existing business support services. It is the first point of contact for businesses in the Heart of the South West LEP area wishing to develop and grow. The service works in partnership with existing local and national business support services and will help businesses access the right support for them without duplicating existing provision.
The Into Somerset service is brought to you by a partnership of Somerset County Council working with the 5 Districts in the County. At the local level, all of us can provide advice and guidance to help you make the right decision to grow or re-locate your business to a specific part of the County.
The Districts/Borough have great local knowledge of the current situation in their patch. If you are uncertain about what support may be available at any time in a specific location you can contact us direct – via the District/Borough Councils, some of whom will have ‘landing packages’ or business start-up grants available and may know of the availability of premises and land in the future. Please use the e-mail addresses/phone numbers on the District pages if your enquiry is specific to one of the Districts; or contact us via 01823 359616 or firstname.lastname@example.org and we wil forward on as required.
Local Business agencies, such as the Somerset Chamber of Commerce & Industry, and the local branch of the Federation of Small Businesses can be useful allies in helping you network with other local businesses. There are also a multitude of other local and/or sector specific networks which you can tap into and link to.
There is also the GetSET for Growth support programme
This is a new, publically funded business support programme that has launched in the Heart of the South West (HotSW) Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) area (which includes Somerset). GetSet for Growth is a specialist service offering fully funded marketing and finance expertise to ambitious businesses with the potential to grow, through the Regional Growth Fund. It focuses on helping business overcome the two biggest barriers to growth: access to customers and access to finance.
From time to time there are other initiatives for growing your business and we will feature them as appropriate. One example is the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses UK programme currently operating nationally throughout the United Kingdom. Applications are now open for the Spring 2017 cohort on this programme and will close on 27 February 2017. (Further deadlines will be announced on the website)
For current commercial property options, as these can change on a regular basis, please search on the Into Somerset property database.
There are a number of Enterprise Centres, Innovation Centres and Work hubs across the County where businesses can receive support and advice to help them start up or grow their business. These Centres provide very flexible landing pads or start up premises - and the collaboration opportunities are endless. Check out the detail of where they are and what they can offer on the separate tab