More than a quarter of a million pounds has been pumped into local businesses in Blackpool in the past year, thanks to a town hall scheme.
The cash has come from the council’s Get Started service, which is part of the Start Up Lancashire project supported by cash from the European Regional Development Fund.
The business support has helped Blackpool companies to secure around £275,000 worth of the Government’s Start Up loans.
The money has come from separate business loan programmes, varying from those tailored towards 18-30 year olds, to others aimed at ex service personnel or unemployed people.
Money has been found for a huge variety of different companies,the latest of which is local IT business Axon Communication.
The family run business, which specialises in CCTV installations, wi-fi hotspots, computer and laptop repairs and networking, has used its £1,000 loan to put towards opening a new office in North Shore, after help from the council’s business support team.
Nicola Attwood, who runs the company with husband Chris, said: “We are a small business that started trading at our home, but have now expanded to an office inside the Nordelph business centre.
“From here we now can expand our list of services and be more centralised, which enables us to get to our customers quicker when they call on us.
“We have had an enormous amount of help from Blackpool Council’s Get Started team, who have been very helpful with our business plan, financial cash sheets, and even helped with a loan application.”
Coun Fred Jackson, Blackpool Council’s cabinet member for regeneration and urban development, said: “I’m proud to say this council is fighting for small businesses.
“The Get Started scheme offers some great expert advice to anybody thinking of setting up on their own.
“As well as special workshops and seminars, we are also able to help people create business plans and secure them funding from a variety of sources to begin building their companies.
“At a time when the economy is tight for many, it’s really important that we can help people to become their own bosses, and we’re already getting some great success stories from businesses which are thriving thanks to our help.”