Micro & Small Enterprise and Farm Diversification


Through the LDS consultation process, it was widely acknowledged that existing business advice and support is fragmented and there is a lack of consistency. Addressing this basic issue along with supporting some of the new and emerging sectors of the local economy was felt to be of significant value and benefit.

Pre-business support and support for micro and small businesses not wishing to grow but to become more sustainable or efficient were identified as areas unlikely to be supported by the market or other prospective activity, for example through the Tees Valley Business Compass or the York, North Yorkshire and East Riding Growth Hub. The consultation process also identified a strong feeling that we should be looking to the future and encouraging and promoting young entrepreneurship, and that social enterprises play an important role in the business sector, particularly around the opportunities to develop locally responsive models for service delivery.

There is currently limited availability of small scale grant support for existing and new micro and small businesses, and the inclusion of a scheme to address this was felt throughout the consultation process to be the key to unlocking the growth potential of many small rural businesses.


Scope of Programme Activity

To support both new and existing businesses which are a core part of the area’s economy to develop and grow.  Alongside those businesses already established, the Programme is keen to support new and emerging businesses that capitalise on both the traditional sectors of our economy as well as those in emerging sectors.

An open call for applications will allow a rural business, new or existing, to grow and expand.  This could be in the form of increasing its turnover, increasing its profit margins through developing and producing new products and accessing new markets, and / or increasing the employment opportunities available locally.

The Programme is looking to support applications for capital projects which will achieve one or more of the following:

  • Grow / expand an existing rural business;
  • A business start-up; or
  • Farm Diversification – expansion into non-agricultural enterprises.


Eligible Applicants under the Micro and Small Business and Farm Diversification Priority are:

  • Micro and Small Businesses based within the LEADER area, including social enterprises
  • People who wish to start a business in the LEADER area
  • Farming businesses that want to diversify (expand into non-farming activities)


Grant Limits:

  • Minimum £5,000 and no upper limit.
  • Grants of up to 40% of eligible costs can be provided towards commercial activities or up to 95% for non-profit making applicants (subject to State Aid restrictions).


For full details on the type of projects we are looking to support under the Micro and Small Enterprise and Farm Diversification priority please ensure you read the Call for Projects for Micro and Small Enterprise and Farm Diversification and the How To Make An Application section of our website.



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