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Growing Your Business

A range of national and local organisations offer help and advice on growing your business. Listed below are some of the networks operating across Cheshire and Warrington, click on the organisations name to see more information:


AstraZeneca has established the BioHub at its Alderley Park site in Cheshire, UK. The BioHub has been set up to allow pharmaceutical and life science companies to take advantage of the world class facilities available at the site, while operating entirely independently.

BioHub is being managed by BioCity, a leading bioscience incubator, on AstraZeneca’s behalf. BioCity is acting as the interface between AstraZeneca and the BioHub tenants.

BioHub will act as a collaborative R&D Centre, benefiting from Alderley Park’s scientific heritage and its state-of the-art research facilities.

For more information visit the Biohub Website

Business Link Helpline

Business Link Logo

Did you know that the Business Link Helpline is still available and continues to provide a quick response service to people with questions about starting or running a business and those who are unable to find the support they are looking for via web-based services.

The Business Link Helpline helps pre-starts, new start-ups and existing businesses to identify advice needs and gain fast access to on-line support and/or access to trusted business experts at the national and local level.

Business Link Helpline Tel: 0845 600 9006 (9.00am – 6.00pm Monday to Friday)

Specialist Business Advice Service

A specialist business advice service also forms part of the Helpline service offer. For businesses that are in need of additional assistance or who have more complex issues this targeted service provides those meeting specific criteria with a more personalised and in-depth advice through a small team of Business Support Advisers (BSAs).

Business Link Helpline Tel: 0845 600 9006 (9.00am – 6.00pm Monday to Friday).

The Cheshire & Warrington Growth Hub delivers business support to new and growing businesses by simplifying access to support, providing locally sourced solutions and making best use of the region’s business assets.

As a First Stop Shop the Growth Hub aims to provide impartial, clear and expert support to help Cheshire and Warrington businesses get the best support and advice.

By understanding the needs of local businesses the Growth Hub aim to improve co-ordination of local business support with national programmes and introduce new services to fill any gaps to help businesses grow.

The Growth Hub aim to deliver the First Stop service by blending access via resources on our web site, telephone support, face to face on-site advice and specialist events.

Most importantly however, the Growth Hub aim to connect local businesses with high quality assistance from local professional service businesses and strategic partners including local government and academia.

The Growth Hub is governed by the Cheshire and Warrington LEP.




Tel: 03300 245007

For more information view: Cheshire West and Chester Start-Up Flyer

Cheshire and Warrington Business Growth Programme.

Supporting business growth in Cheshire and Warrington

The Cheshire and Warrington Business Growth Programme provides fully funded support to local businesses in the form of workshops, master classes, one-to-one advice, mentoring and peer-to-peer support.  The programme will help entrepreneurs and SMEs to identify their business priorities and how to move their business forward for growth.  We cover a full range of business activity:

12 hours of fully funded support is available for:

Pre-start: Entrepreneur looking to start a business

New start-up: Trading less than 42 months

SME: Small and medium-sized enterprises trading over 42 months

For full programme details, workshop dates and to register for fully funded support go to:


or email us at:

Cheshire Science Corridor Enterprise Zone.

The Cheshire Science Corridor has been awarded Enterprise Zone status. This is an exciting opportunity, covering over 100 hectares, that has the potential to attract in the order of 20,000 jobs and 500 businesses to Cheshire and Warrington through a significantly enhanced profile; attractive business incentives and the ability to retain and reinvest new business rate revenue.

For more information visit:

Economic Development Team


The Cheshire West Economic Development team promotes and supports the growth of business in Cheshire West and Chester. From providing advice and grants to the very newest enterprises to developing the prospects of local companies and bringing larger employers into the area, the team will be able to signpost the best opportunities.

Face to Face mentorsme

Mentorsme Logo

National Mentoring Service: operating from the Mentors Me website – administered by the British Bankers Association and acting as the first national mentoring portal to provide access to mentoring services, or indeed for individuals and organisations to register to provide mentoring services.

For further information go to the Get Mentoring website and the Business In You Website.

Gov.Uk Logo

A central portal containing links to all the information you need about running a business in the UK.'s business section includes details about setting up a new venture, help if you're self employed or a sole trader and full details of tax and legislation.

Innovate UK

Innovate UK is the new name for the Technology Strategy Board. They fund, support and connect innovative businesses to accelerate sustainable economic growth.

Innovate UK fund, support and connect innovative businesses to accelerate sustainable economic growth.

For further Inforation visit the Innovate UK Website
For the latest Funding Opportunities coming from Innovate UK click here

Innovation Agency.

Innovation Agency are the Academic Health Science Network for the North West Coast, covering Cheshire, Merseyside, Lancashire and South Cumbria, with around 4.1 million residents.  Their footprint includes 22 NHS providers, 20 CCGs, nine universities and a large number of life science industry partners.

Their core purpose is to spread innovation, improve health, generate economic growth.

- They are catalysts for the spread of innovation at pace and scale - improving health, generating economic growth and helping facilitate change across whole health and social care economies.

- They connect regional networks of NHS and academic organisations, local authorities, the third sector and industry - responding to the diverse needs of patients and populations through partnership and collaboration.

- They create the right environment for relevant industries to work with the health and social care system.

For more information visit the Innovation Agency website

Investing in Cheshire and Warrington

Cheshire has a vibrant economy with successful businesses operating in chemicals, pharmaceuticals, automotive, financial services, manufacturing, professional services and creative industries. Substantial and rapid economic growth has occurred around Cheshire. Businesses also benefit substantially from the areas proximity to Manchester and Liverpool and two major international airports.

The following links provide economic intelligence to all businesses who are looking to relocate, grow or start a business within the Cheshire and Warrington sub-region.

LEADER Programme

The LEADER programme is a unique source of funding for rural areas across Cheshire and Warrington, and is managed by Cheshire West and Chester Council.

LEADER takes a community-led approach to delivering European funding, with decisions being made by a Local Action Group (LAG) formed of locally-appointed representatives from the private, public and third sectors.

LEADER (a French acronym that translates as ‘Liaisons among actors in the rural economy’) is an EU programme that aims to provide funding for businesses and organisations looking to begin or expand their operations in rural areas. What separates it from other funding programmes is that it is delivered locally rather than nationally, with decisions on how and where the grant money is spent being made by an appointed Local Action Group (LAG) of key representatives from various organisations in the local area.

For more information visit the LEADER Programme website

The Manufacturing Growth Fund is available to businesses with the ambition to grow and who are looking to: increase production capacity; streamline manufacturing processes; increase innovation and access new markets.

The Fund offers SMEs in the Manufacturing and Engineering Sector impartial advice to help assess the opportunities and barriers to growth, offering a grant towards the cost of bringing in specialist expertise for eligible projects.

Support is available for significant projects with a value of around £10,000 which would attract a grant of £3,000. Eligible projects include those that lead to job creation, help to develop new products or services and bring them to market, plus drive up productivity.

Contact: Phil Anders, Manufacturing Growth Advisor
Tel: 07718 113 509

For more information visit: Manufacturing Growth Fund website

The Manufacturing Institute has a proven track record of helping manufacturers to make significant and lasting improvements to their businesses.

They are able to do this because they have a wealth of manufacturing expertise gained from working with and listening to thousands of companies. All of their practitioners are manufacturing professionals who have in-depth knowledge and experience of implementing operational effectiveness to world-class standards. Their approach is to transfer this knowledge and capability to their clients.

They work with manufacturing companies across all sectors including, automotive, aerospace, pharmaceuticals, packaging and food and drink. They also help selected clients in healthcare and financial services to benefit from their approach to operational excellence.

For more information visit: The Manufacturing Institute website

The Innovation Network Business Breakfasts are arranged to provide support to innovative and/or knowledge based SME’s across the MDA area. Key partners who run innovation centres and support businesses in the area, such as Glyndwr and Chester Universities, the West Cheshire and North Wales Chamber are invited to provide input and promote relevant workplace opportunities.

The main features of the Network are:
  • Finger Icon an informal opportunity for businesses to talk to each other
  • Finger Icon public and private sector organisations are invited to pitch about the latest support and opportunities available to assist business growth and innovation
  • Finger Icon breakfasts are held in a small number of locations, placed strategically across the border region.

For further information please refer to the Mersey Dee Alliance website or contact Nicola Powell; or 0151 356 6567.

Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund.

The Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund will produce greater levels of investment, increase the focus on the potential opportunities across the Northern Powerhouse regions and provide increased flexibility in the type of funding provided. Together these will contribute to better economic outcomes for the regions’ businesses, growth and jobs.

For more information visit: Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund

RDPE Growth Programme.

Grant funding for projects in England which create jobs and growth in the rural economy - what is available and how to apply.

You could be eligible for a Growth Programme grant if your business is carrying out a project to create jobs or bring more money into the rural economy.

There are 3 types of grant:

- Business development
- Food processing
- Rural tourism infrastructure

The grants are funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD), which is part of the European Structural Investment Funds (ESIF).

For more information on how to apply visit: Gov.Uk

SME Development Programme

If you are a small to medium sized enterprise looking to grow, are growing, or are

seeking to innovate, Manchester Metropolitan University have three fully funded programmes to support your needs.

The three new fully funded business development programmes are designed to help you through your growth journey, give you the support you need and bring you together with a like-minded group of peers to learn from each other.
The programmes are delivered at no cost to the business owner and are funded by the European Regional Development Fund. The programmes, starting in May 2016,  are for businesses throughout Greater Manchester, Cheshire and Warrington.

To learn more about each of these programmes and register your interest please visit:

Thornton Science Park - High Growth Centre

The University Of Chester’s High Growth Centre is located at Thornton Science Park and offers a unique blend of industry, innovation and academia.

Department for International Trade.

The Department for International Trade are based in Manchester and provide support to those venturing into International Trade for the very first time, or for those experienced exporters who need more DIT continues to provide Business Support for International Trade from:

North West International Trade Centre
Warren Bruce Court
Warren Bruce Road
Trafford Park
M17 1LB

Tel: 0845 603 7053

Sci-Tech Daresbury

Sci-Tech Daresbury is one of two National Science and Innovation Campuses established in 2006, (originally named as Daresbury Science and Innovation Campus). It is located in Cheshire close to Runcorn and Warrington, and within easy access of Liverpool and Manchester. Sci-Tech Daresbury is internationally recognised through the reputation of the STFC Daresbury Laboratory and Cockcroft Institute in leading-edge research and development, and the successful establishment of its open innovation model.
For more information visit the Sci-Tech website


Exclusive to businesses supported by the Business Growth Service, GrowthCommunity brings together the directors of England's most focused, dynamic high growth businesses. GrowthCommunity provides a privileged, flexible environment to connect with other business leaders. It is a unique space to meet and share knowledge with peers, generating new opportunities to further grow your business. Members also benefit from exclusive access to cutting-edge intelligence, opinion and insight to drive business growth. Insight and analysis offered by GrowthCommunity specifically addresses the high growth SME market, providing members with high-quality knowledge to inspire new possibilities.
For more information visit the GrowthCommunity website


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