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Northumberland boosted by support to help start a business

Northumberland based support service, The Northumberland Small Business Service, is thrilled to announce a new strategic partnership with Ponteland based business centre to support individuals across the County to pursue a business idea and start their own business.

The SME Centre of Excellence who have already supported over 12,000 businesses across Northumberland will be delivering expert advice and support as part of the Northumberland Small Business Service. The Enterprise & Support element of the programme is focussed on providing pre and start up businesses a catalogue of support to help them start a business as well as navigate their first year of trading.

The Northumberland Small Business Service (NSBS), is delivered by Advance Northumberland delivering on behalf of Northumberland County Council. The project is part funded by the North of Tyne Combined Authority Investment Fund and by the UK Government through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund and the Rural England Prosperity Fund with the North of Tyne Combined Authority as the lead authority.

The programme offers a range of support for businesses looking to grow, farm enterprises looking to diversify and individuals looking to start a business across Northumberland but predominantly in the rural areas. The experienced team and its range of experts will work directly with individuals and businesses to help them to start, grow, diversify, and sustain their business. There is also access to a £2million rural capital Grant Investment Fund which will support eligible businesses in rural areas with clear growth plans to access direct capital investment to expand productive capacity or diversify into new markets or products.

The Enterprise & Start Up strand of the service is being delivered until March 2025. The support is specifically geared towards those in their first year of trading as well as anyone in Northumberland aged 16+ who is considering starting a business or pursuing a business idea.

The offer includes industry expert led workshops and 1-2-1 support delivered by experts from the SME Centre of Excellence. Those on the programme can also benefit from large scale events which will see not only keynote speakers delivering seminars but encourage and help build a strong business community for those starting out and looking to make meaningful business connections.

Porgramme Manager, Lucy Evermore said “It’s great to be able to offer start ups and those inspired to start a business invaluable support. Northumberland is hub of creativity and drive and to be able to support these businesses will be so beneficial not only to the individual but to the economy as well.

I am really looking forward to working with Ammar and the team over the next few years to provide that invaluable support helping start ups to navigate their business journey”.

Ammar Mirza, Executive Chair of SME Centre of Excellence said, “As an entrepreneurial centre of excellence, we are delighted to be working with the Northumberland Small Business Service (NSBS) to deliver support and inspiration to entrepreneurs in Northumberland. It's a great opportunity to use our proven enterprise ignition framework to collaborate with NSBS and support start-ups to start, survive and thrive. The level and depth of support from the programme is significant adding value to the whole county and beyond”.

Aimed to help individuals bring their business idea to life, so if your business is just a thought or you have been established for less than 12 months, the support will enable you to navigate topics from finance, social media to customer development supporting you and your business from the ground up.

The North of Tyne Combined Authority is a partnership of three local authorities: Newcastle City Council, North Tyneside Council, and Northumberland County Council and the North of Tyne Elected Mayor.

The UK Shared Prosperity Fund is a central pillar of the UK government’s Levelling Up agenda and provides £2.6 billion of funding for local investment by March 2025.

The Fund aims to improve pride in place and increase life chances across the UK investing in communities and place, supporting local business, and people and skills. For more information, visit

If you have any questions about the event or the new Northumberland Small Business Service, please visit or contact the team at

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