Fylde green lights 100,000 business boost

Whitehall grants of £100,000 were given to a number of councils nationwide to tackle empty shops and Fylde will use its money to provide professional advice and training to new and existing businesses.

Councillor David Eaves, Fylde Council leader, said: “We considered a number of ways to spend the money, including possible business rates discounts or small grants for premises improvements. We decided that the maximum benefit for the greatest number of businesses would be to fund the business advice that has proven to be invaluable to many new and existing businesses.

“Empty shops are not the blight in Fylde that they are elsewhere but we must help all our town centres to thrive. That will help residents, tourists and the people who work in Fylde.

“Council staff can now start to identify the providers of advice to businesses. They will want the best people at the best price as we want to maximise the help available. It means the scheme is months, rather than weeks, away but we are determined to get it right: business owners know exactly what they want and we will work with them to tailor the scheme to their needs.

“Many new businesses fail in the first 12 months. They are often started by very enthusiastic people, but some lack the professional advice and skills that they need to turn their passion into a sustainable business.

“These small businesses are tomorrow’s big businesses and the whole of Fylde will benefit from this support.”

Fylde Council staff will now liaise with organisations like the Federation of Small Businesses and the Chambers of Trade to arrange the practical support.

Councillor Eaves added: “We will publicise it to new and existing and new businesses, regardless of where they are in the borough and we will ensure that applying for help is swift and simple. This is practical help that we can pinpoint where it is needed the most.”