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Business support and advice

These organisations offer a range of business support, training and help with setting up your business.

Ask Us business service

Gloucestershire County Council runs the Ask Us business service. They provide free targeted mailing lists to help you with marketing. They can also provide company reports on your behalf from their database Fame. Fame is a comprehensive business database and contains information on both public and private companies across the UK and Ireland.

For more information visit the Ask Us business service webpage.

Business support services

To find government-backed support and finance for business, including: grants; finance and loans; business support eg mentoring, consultancy, an funding for small and medium-sized businesses and start-ups please visit:

Co-operative futures

Free business advice and support service to groups of people wanting to set up a co-operative or other form of social enterprise. For more information:

County Land and business Association (CLA)

Safeguarding the interests of private landowners and rural businesses, the Country Land and Business Association have two main functions; exerting political pressure through authoritative briefing and lobbying of policy members and providing the advice services for their members.

Energy advice line

The Energy Advice Line offers impartial advice to help Small and Medium Enterprises save money on energy bills.

Federation of Small Businesses (FSB)

The largest campaigning pressure group promoting and protecting the interests of the self-employed and owners of small firms. The Federation of Small Businesses offers its members assistance and support 24 hours a day. Membership fees are £70 per year for a sole trader, then based on a sliding scale according to number of employees.

Fredericks Foundation

Fredericks Foundation was set up in 2001 to help people who aspire to run their own business but are unable to obtain the necessary support to do so. Most of Fredericks Clients choose self-employment as the best (and sometimes the only), route out of benefit-dependency.

As a result of the economic downturn, as well as helping people off benefits, Fredericks Foundation has branched out to assist existing companies in need of finance who are unable to obtain it from their bank.

Gfirst local economic partnership

Gloucestershire has a Local Economic Partnership, or LEP, called GFirst, which is a public private partnership which leads on economic development within the County.

Gloucestershire Enterprise Limited

Gloucestershire Enterprise Limited is the local Enterprise Agency for Gloucestershire and operates on a not-for-profit, social enterprise basis.  

Its purpose is to provide organisations in the county with access to a wide range of services that will meet their needs in the short, medium and longer term, either through direct delivery or via our partners.

Gloucestershire Growth Hub

The Growth Hub is a partnership between the University of Gloucestershire and GFirst LEP, here to help any business in Gloucestershire realise its potential and grow regardless of sector or size.

It is the focal point for ambitious businesses which are seeking the relevant information, guidance, support, expertise, finance, knowledge and experience they need to grow. It can help them scale up, boost performance and find new ways of working.

Innovation 4 Growth

Available to both small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and large companies, the Innovation 4 Growth scheme will part fund research and development projects with grants of between £25,000 and £150,000.

Financed by the UK government’s Regional Development Fund, it will help businesses develop new or improved products, technologies, processes or services - safeguarding existing, or creating additional, jobs as a result.


Maybe* is a collaborative social media management platform to help businesses improve their results. Through Maybe* businesses in the District can collaborate and engage with each other's content enabling them to reach more people and amplify their activities across social channels.

Details of the training they offer and how to sign up are available from the Maybe* website.

National Farmers Union (NFU)

An organisation representing farmers and growers in England and Wales. As well as representing its members' interests, the National Farmers Union provides a wide range of services to them including help with legal, planning and taxation matters, marketing and food promotion.

Open to Export

Open to Export is a community driven service for small and medium sized businesses, looking for help and support in exporting from the UK. For more information please visit the:

Princes Trust

The Princes Trust offers help for 14 to30 years olds to build confidence, gain skills and start their own business. For more information:

Start and Grow Enterprise

Start and Grow Enterprise is a project supporting entrepreneurs and start-up businesses in Gloucestershire. The project can support anyone with a business idea, and existing start-ups trading up to 3 years. Start and Grow offers free training, events, networks and resources, plus access to mentoring, co-working space, and the opportunity to apply for funding.

Start and Grow Enterprise is a University of Gloucestershire programme, part-funded by ERDF, and will run until December 2019. We are based at The Growth Hub in Gloucester.

Find out more and sign up at

Follow on social media for the latest start-up news and events @UoGStartandGrow


Call: 01242 715477