NEW businesses are booming in Blackpool thanks to £100,000 of loans secured for them by town hall bosses.
The council’s Get Started scheme has helped almost 70 businesses to start up in the past year, and 750 since 2007, by giving advice and support to access the money to begin trading.
Firms have been helped to access funding from the Government’s Start Up Loans scheme.
This is aimed at helping 18-30 year olds to start businesses, the NEA project for people on Job Seekers Allowance and also directly from banks.
Coun Gary Coleman, cabinet member for regeneration and urban development, said: “I’m proud to say that this council is fighting for the 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 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.”
New businesses vary between many different sectors, from the service industry to retail and beauty. One business owner starting out is Patricia Rose who set up specialist hair extension salon, Kitya, on South King Street.
She said: “I went on one of the business courses and thought ‘I can do this.” Patricia’s unique weaving techniques are now proving popular and, she says, helping people with alopecia and undergoing chemotherapy.
Sharen Rusling also gets help from her husband John who helps her run S&J Fresh Five-a-Day on Lytham Road.
“I lost my job in 2011,” recalls Sharen, “but I didn’t want to be unemployed. We’ve only been open three weeks but we’ve got a nice steady client base going.”
Susan Frary, who runs a plus-size clothing stall in Abingdon Street market, been inspired to give a small business a try.
She said: “The Get Started team have given me the motivation and get up and go to go out on my own.”