The purpose of the support programme is:

  • To provide a support package for new start-ups and recently established businesses to help them to become successfully established within the Loughborough BID area whilst also reducing the number of vacant units in the Town Centre.
  • To assist and support University-generated graduate and undergraduate business ideas that have received support from different departments at the University and which may be suitable for a High Street presence.
To support the aims and objectives of the Love Loughborough BID:

  • To reduce the number of vacant units
  • To increase employment in the area
  • To increase footfall and spend
  • To increase investment in the Town Centre
  • To generate pride in the area

The Business Support Programme has three elements:

Business Support for Existing Businesses in the BID Area

Businesses will have access to the full range of Love Loughborough services, including:

  • Free weekly recycling collection.
  • Free entry in the Love Loughborough business directory.
  • Membership of the Love Loughborough loyalty card and app with monthly loyalty reports.
  • Free publicity through social media
  • Retail radio scheme (F.A.C.T)
  • Full event listing on website and Facebook

A Free Signposting Service

Available to all BID businesses looking to develop, diversify and expand.

  • A list of all available vacant properties in the BID area with detail of rent, rates, size, planning, status, agent, landlord etc. available from landlords and agent’s websites.
  • A link through the BID website to InCharnwoods Investment Team and their business support package which includes one to one advice and support.
  • A link through the BID website to the LLEP Business Gateway, providing free business workshops and training throughout Leicestershire.
  • Information on available sources of business funding and advice with associated web links.

A Business Support Package

Finding Premises

  • Information on current available units plus links and introductions to local landlords and agents.
  • Supply of footfall figures and visitor flows for specific premises and locations through the BID’s Geo-Sense and WiFi infrastructure.
  • Advice on any eligible business rate relief.

Adapting Premises

  • Business support grants for new businesses to make physical adaptions and improvements to vacant units, including shop-fitting and signage.

Social Media Training

  • One to one mentoring and support from a trained student advisor in association with Loughborough Students Union.
  • The support will include how to use social media like Twitter, Instagram and Facebook to grow and develop your business.

Digital Skills Training

  • In-house work-shops and one to one support delivered by our in-house Digital Engagement Officer.
  • Topics will include “choosing the right channel for your business”, “building your business online presence” and “latest marketing trends”.

Promoting Your Business

  • Share your social content with us so we can push your message through our own channels and increase your reach.

Retail Training/Mentoring

  • One to one advice and mentoring
  • A mystery shopper assessment of an individual business
  • Retail masterclasses for a group of businesses.

Financial Advice

  • Specialist business advice.
  • Advice includes planning, financial planning, cash flow and access to finance plus marketing support from Loughborough’s banks including Santander, RBS, Barclays and HSBC.

Legal Advice

  • A free one hour session with a commercial lawyer at Hawley and Rogers including advice on commercial leases, legal responsibilities etc.

Insurance Advice

  • A free one hour session with an Insurance Assessor at the Independent Insurance Bureau.

Try A Trade

  • For businesses not yet ready to take on premises, they can trial their business as a pop up or on a Market stall.
  • We will help source space for a pop up and through the Borough Council we will offer a FREE Market stall on one Market day and then at a 50% discount for three months.
  • We can also offer up to a week’s trial in the display area in the middle of the Carillon Shopping Centre.

Planning Advice

  • A free session with a specialist advisor at Charnwood Borough Council.
  • Advice includes details of necessary planning permission, advertisement consent, building regulations, food hygiene rules and access to food hygiene training.

Access to to Town Centre Performance Statistics

  • Access to a large database of Town Centre Statistics which can be available to your business on request, you will have access to:
    • Town Centre Footfall
    • Wi-Fi User Statistics
    • Vacant Units
    • Car Parking Figures