Could grant funding help improve your business?

A COUPLE of Shaw businesses are urging fellow traders to take advantage of business improvement grants.

Over the last five years Oldham Council has awarded more than £146,000 to support 50 businesses thanks to its Shaw, Lees and A62 (Failsworth corridor) scheme.

Funeral directors Jason Worsnip and Cissie Barlows traditional sweetshop have benefited from the funding.

And with applications still being invited until November, more premises could be improved or extended.

It doesn’t matter if you run an existing independent business or you are a new start up – help is out there.

The grants can be used to improve the exterior or for an internal fit out where the business can demonstrate business growth and/or job creation.

Grants are for 50 per cent of the capital costs, up to a current maximum of £8,000.

For Worsnip Family Funeral Service funds were provided to bring an empty property back into use by improving the external appearance and enabling the premises to suit the needs of their new enterprise.

Jason, who runs the business with his brother Nigel, said: “The grant gave us a real lift and made the difference in giving us the confidence to carry out the works to such a high standard.”

Shaw’s Cissie Barlow’s Traditional Sweetshop was an existing shop but thanks to the grant were able to relocate to larger premises on Market Street in order to expand their product lines and grow the business.

Sue Avery, who runs the shop, said: “The grant process has been massive for my business, we could not have moved and done all the work on the refurbishment without it.

“The council has been really supportive and helpful. I would encourage anyone who has the chance to take up a grant and reap the benefits.”

Councillor Sean Fielding, Leader of Oldham Council, said: “It’s only right we support hard-working independent traders where we can and help them to set up or grow.

“If you’re thinking of sprucing up the exterior of your building or setting up shop in one of these three areas, then this funding could really help you.”

The deadline for applications is November 1 and all grants will be allocated by December 31.

Any independent traders from Shaw, Lees or Failsworth (A62 corridor) who want more information should contact Liz Kershaw, Principal Regeneration Officer, on 0161 770 4168 or email:

Alternatively download an application form and find other useful information online:

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