Cash welcome for new firms in towns

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TEN businesses have now filled empty shops in Ilkeston and Long Eaton making use of a council cash incentive.

Last year Erewash Borough Council put £10,000 aside from a Government grant to be used as Golden Hellos for new businesses.

One of the recipients was Framed and Locked Up, which opened earlier this month in Bath Street in premises which had been empty for months.

Owner Katherine Wall offers picture framing, locks, keys and hardware.

“Having found nothing suitable at the Jobcentre I thought I would try to run my own business using my experience and knowledge built up over the years,” she said.

She spent her £1,000 grant on marketing and stock.

“I was extremely grateful for the help from the Golden Hello scheme,” she said. “It gave me a good start.”

Caroline Presbury runs Deli-licious, a delicatessen and sandwich bar in Station Road, Long Eaton.

She worked in a deli and sandwich bar in Stapleford for 18 months before setting up the business last November, using her grant to buy supplies. She said: “It came in really hand at an expensive time for me.”

The Government gave £52,000 to the council in 2009 to spend on rejuvenating the town centre. It was decided last September that the Golden Hello scheme should be taken from the cash.

Grants are available to help people with start-up costs if they take on empty business premises in the towns.

Cllr Geoff Smith, lead member for regeneration, said he has given out ten grants so far.

“As well as making good use of empty properties and boosting the street scene, the initiative has helped people fulfil dreams of owning businesses,” he said. “It’s a win-win situation.”

But with most of the grant money used, anybody wishing to be helped by the scheme should call market-towns co-ordinator Paul Calladine on 0115 944 3944.