Extra £5,000 for new shops

Catherine Wall receiving her �1,000 golden hello from Cllr Geoff Smith earlier this year.

Catherine Wall receiving her �1,000 golden hello from Cllr Geoff Smith earlier this year.

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A GOLDEN hello scheme has been extended by £5,000 to give new businesses looking to set up in Ilkeston and Long Eaton town centres a fighting chance.

Erewash Borough Council and regeneration agency Erewash Partnership have given £10,000 out so far to help 12 shop owners move into vacant premises in both towns.

The cash has been taken from a £52,000 Government grant given last year to help boost struggling town centres.

Now the authority has announced that £5,000 left over from the total will go towards extending the golden hello scheme.

Cllr Geoff Smith, the lead member for regeneration at the council said: “It was initially a success in helping a dozen businesses make good use of empty properties and improve the street scene.

“The extra cash will help more people towards their business aims. But applicants will have to be quick because once this money has run out it is unlikely that there will be any more.”

Successful applicants to the scheme initially receive £500, and another £500 after they have traded successfully for 10 weeks.

Framed and Locked Up opened in Bath Street, Ilkeston, in March in premises which had been empty for several months.

Owner Catherine Wall spent the £1,000 on marketing and stock.

“The grant was a good kick-start to the business, enabling me to build up stock and giving me a solid foundation,” she said.

Call market towns co-ordinator Paul Calladine at Erewash Partnership on 0115 944 3944 for information.

Application packs are on the websites www.ilkeston.biz and www.longeaton.biz.