Business support, advice and information
The council, among other organisations, provides a range of business support and there are a variety of local and national business support organisations who deliver services to businesses.
We also have a page of advice and guidance for new businesses.
The Growth Hub network across Gloucestershire is a GFirst Local Enterprise Partnership project to help Gloucestershire’s businesses maximise their potential by providing free unbiased support in a wide variety of areas.
There are hubs active in Gloucester, Cirencester, Tewkesbury and Stroud, with Cheltenham and the Forest of Dean opening soon. Services are also available online and at every Gloucestershire County Council library site.
The hubs offer business support, events, one to ones, incubation space for start-ups and flexible meeting spaces.
Ask Us business service from Gloucestershire County Council
Gloucestershire Libraries provide an information service called Ask Us Business and Patent Library Centre (PatLib). They provide local access to patent, trade mark, designs and copyright information, to help businesses and individuals understand the different types of legal protection and how to apply to protect their intellectual property (IP) assets.
They also provide free company reports and targeted mailing lists for your marketing needs from their database Fame. Fame is a comprehensive business database and contains information on both public and private companies across the UK and Ireland.
For more information visit the Ask Us business service on the county council website.
Business Support Helpline
The Business Support Helpline offers impartial advice and guidance to new and existing businesses. It has information on national and local schemes, grants and loans to help businesses start and grow.
If you need more in-depth impartial advice, a team of advisers can provide personalised support including a free telephone appointment service. The Helpline can be accessed via telephone, webchat, email and social media.
Contact 0800 998 1098 (Monday to Friday, 9am - 6pm) or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cheltenham Chamber of Commerce
Members have access to news and information briefings and networking events, for a full list of benefits visit Cheltenham Chamber of Commerce website.
Federation of Small Businesses
#FSBConnect Gloucestershire are networking events that provide great opportunities, new contacts and business information. For local news and events, follow FSB Gloucestershire Bristol and Bath on Facebook.
GFirst LEP Skills Portal
If you are out of work, keen to learn new skills or want to start your own business, the Skills Portal has range of support to help you. You can find out more about national support, local support and learning opportunities.
The Small Business Commissioner
The Small Business Commissioner (SBC) looks at complaints from small businesses about problems getting paid by larger businesses.
The SBC is:
- independent, but appointed by government
- free to use
The SBC provide general advice and information to small businesses on matters such as:
- resolving disputes
- signposting small businesses to existing support and dispute resolution services.
- SBC also considers complaints about payment issues between small business and their larger customers making (non-binding) recommendations on how the parties should resolve their disputes.