Business funding and grants
There is a broad range of business support funding grants available in the UK, with varying objectives. These aim to help businesses to make the investments they need to prosper and grow.
Grant Funding available
You can find information on current business funding and grants on the Heart of the South West website.
Rural England Prosperity Fund
Rural England Prosperity Fund Somerset has been allocated £3.4m of capital funding for the rural economy, subject to the submission and approval of an Investment Plan.
This fund is complementary to the UKSPF and is a successor to the European LEADER programmes. The grant money is split over two years with 25% of the funds in Year 1 (£856,686) and 75% in Year 2 (£2,570,058).
Projects will need to complete within the financial year (ie by 31 March) which in Year 1 may limit spend to capital items such as equipment. There is no revenue funding.
Applicants will need 50% match funding for their project. The grant is paid retrospectively therefore payments will only be made against cleared spend.
The Rural England Prosperity Fund (REPF) supports the aims of the government’s Levelling Up White Paper and Future Farming Programme. It will fund capital projects for small businesses and community infrastructure. This will help to improve productivity and strengthen the rural economy and rural communities.
The Rural Fund objectives sit within the UKSPF investment priorities for:
- Supporting Local Business
- Community and Place
The Rural Fund provides capital funding to:
- support new and existing rural businesses to develop new products and facilities that will be of wider benefit to the local economy. This includes farm businesses looking to diversify income streams, but not into food and drink.
- support new and improved community infrastructure, providing essential community services and assets for local people and businesses to benefit the local economy Projects must be in a rural area.
For the purpose of this fund, Defra’s classification of rural areas is:
- towns, villages and hamlets with populations below 10,000 and the wider countryside
- market or ‘hub towns’ with populations of up to 30,000 that serve their surrounding rural areas as centres of employment and in providing services (This will exclude funding of projects in Taunton, Bridgwater and Yeovil)
Investments must demonstrate value for money and additionality – also how they contribute to net zero and nature recovery objectives.
Further detail can be found in the Guidance document.
To discuss a potential project please email REPF@Somerset.gov.uk