£7m Growth Programme funding for rural businesses

Rural businesses in 12 areas across the country are set to benefit from almost £7m to get their businesses off the ground and promote tourism, Farming Minister George Eustice announced 30 September.

This is the latest funding round after £15m was made available at the end of July and August through Defra’s Growth Programme.

Already hundreds of rural businesses have benefited from Rural Development Programme funding, with entrepreneurs using the money to expand and promote local tourism. Successful applicants include cookery schools, garden centres, tea rooms and farm shops, alongside cutting edge food producers who are taking the gastronomic scene by storm with their local ciders and new charcuterie and cheese products.

Individual grants in this round are worth upwards of £35,000, depending on the individual project, and will now be offered in 12 Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) areas.

Inviting businesses to apply, Minister for Farming, Food and the Marine Environment George Eustice said:

“This funding plays an important role in supporting our plans to grow the rural economy and bring high-quality jobs to rural areas.

“I strongly encourage businesses from across the country looking to expand to apply. This way we can ensure our rural towns and villages remain thriving and are attractive places to work and raise a family.”

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