City of Wolverhampton Council is getting behind the city's small businesses ahead of Small Business Saturday on 3 December.

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The importance of handing out small 'seed' funds to assist fledgling businesses to take their first steps has been recognised, with a small grant programme now in place.

New businesses have the chance to get their hands on £250 grants if they meet the criteria following an appraisal by business advisors from Access 2 Business (A2B), who also assist with business plans.

The first successful applicants were presented with their cheques at A2B's 'Celebrating Fall into Enterprise' event earlier this month.

The recipients were Darren Broadbent (creating 3D images using lego/toys), Paul Watts (IT support back up services), Helen Russon (garden services), Joanna Breakway (HR consultancy service), and Nigel Speller (health and fitness instructor).

As part of the Small Business Saturday campaign the city has arranged for some of these businesses to have stalls, without charge, at the Christmas Market on Dudley Street on Saturday.

Councillor John Reynolds, Cabinet Member for City Economy, said: "The council and its city partners work closely with small and medium enterprises (SMEs), particularly through our skills and employability team and A2B.

"Our efforts have been recognised by the Federation of Small Businesses at the Local Authority Small Business Friendly Awards, picking up awards in each of the last 4 years.

"We very much value the presence of these small businesses and the creative local people behind them.

"These are the businesses that help give Wolverhampton its own identity and character."

In January, City of Wolverhampton Council Leader, Councillor Roger Lawrence, will also launch the inaugural Wolverhampton Independent Retail Excellence Awards.

The annual awards are being led by Wolverhampton BID in partnership with the council.

They will recognise independent shops, cafes and other independent enterprises, as well as reward entrepreneurs.

Small businesses across Wolverhampton have put in place special offers and events in the build up to Small Business Saturday.

Baked in Tettenhall kicked off the offers today (Tuesday 29 November) with a 10% off everything offer.

Community Interest Company (CIC), Temple Street Studios, will be opening their doors to the public tomorrow (Wednesday 30 November) and Thursday (1 December), between 1pm and 7pm.

Café Maxsim on Darlington Street, if offering 10% on everything on Wednesday (30 November). To get this offer say 'Supporting Small Biz 10% Offer' before ordering, between 9am and 2.30pm.

Artist Clare Wassermann is holding an open studio event at New Hampton Arts Centre, Dunkley Street, on Thursday (1 December), between 10am and 1pm.

The Hungry Bistro is offering 10% on everything on Thursday (1 December). To get this offer say 'Supporting Small Biz 10% Offer' before ordering, between 12.30pm and 2.30pm, and 5pm and 9pm.

On Saturday (3 December), Bilston Motor Spares is offering 5% off everything. To get this offer say 'Supporting Small Biz 5% Offer' before ordering, between 9.30am and 4.30pm.

Also, Zuri Coffee will have 10% off all food items only. To get this discount say 'Zuri 10% discount on all food items' before ordering.

On the same day, Gatis Community Centre in Gatis Street is hosting the Wolverhampton Home Educating Families Craft Fair; and Viner Gallery on Merridale Lane is staging an open event showcasing local artists' work between noon and 3pm.

  • released: Tuesday 29 November, 2016