£1.7m grant aid up for grabs to grow rural businesses in Derbyshire

Councillor Lewis Rose OBE

Councillor Lewis Rose OBE

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Small businesses, farmers and community groups in parts of Derbyshire Dales and High Peak are being given financial help to develop and grow.

Grants of more than £2,500 are available from the Peak LEADER Rural Grants Scheme which is being managed by Derbyshire County Council on behalf of the Derbyshire Economic Partnership.

The grants can also be used to help:

l Increase farm productivity and improvement

l Farm diversification

l Small business support

l Provide new services in rural areas

l Small scale culture and heritage developments and improvements

l New small tourist attractions

l Forestry improvements (woodland management).

Councillor Anne Western, cabinet member for economic development, said: “Farming and small businesses are the lifeblood of many rural communities and play an important role in Derbyshire’s economy.

“We’re committed to building a strong economy that creates jobs and grows businesses and these grants are a welcome boost for rural communities in the Derbyshire Dales and High Peak.”

Bids will be considered by the programme’s Local Action Group which is made up of representatives from the local authorities, voluntary groups, community groups and businesses in the Peak District.

Successful applicants will receive a share of £1.7 million which has been awarded to the scheme.

Councillor Lewis Rose, who chairs the action group, said: “We will champion and support entrepreneurial communities, ensuring that innovative ideas to improve and add to our rural services can be tested and delivered.”

The first deadline for outline applications is January 8, 2016. Anyone interested in applying can visit www.derbyshireeconomicpartnership.org.uk/Rural-Derbyshire/Leader-in-the-Peak-2015-to-2020 for details or email Peakleader@derbyshire.gov.uk