Business Support


Chesterfield is a great place to grow your business and there are a number of organisations that offer business support and advice on local tendering opportunities, skills and funding opportunities.

Chesterfield Innovation Support Programme

Chesterfield Innovation Support Programme (Chesterfield Borough Council) is aproject which aims to increase the level of support available to businesses in the Chesterfield area.

The project has been set up to offer a variety of funded support which includes:

  • one-to-one business reviews
  • workshops, seminars and networking events
  • access to specialist innovation advisers
  • support to identify potential funding choices

For further information on the Innovation Support Programme, please contact:

Adrian Williamson
Innovation Support Project Manager

D2N2 Growth Hub

Funded by D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and DNLCC, the D2N2 Growth Hub is designed to help identify local business support information to aid developing a business or starting a new business, as well as providing links to key national sources of information and support across the country.

For more information, please call 0333 006 9178 or visit:

Sheffield City Region Growth Hub

Chesterfield falls into both the D2N2 LEP, as mentioned above, and the Sheffield City Region LEP (SCR).  This means that businesses also have access to another  Growth Hub.  You will find further detail on the website

The Sheffield City Region Access to Finance Centre of Expertise (SCR AFCOE)

SCR AFCOE is an important part of the SCR Growth Hub offering.  The approach adopted by the SCR is to provide one point of contact for all funding enquiries – this can either initially be through the hub enquiry line 0800 043 5522 or alternatively businesses can directly submit a fully completed Expression of Interest.  Further information can be found here

University of  Derby

Catalysing Growth

The support includes:

  • Fully-funded access to expertise and co-operation with university research centres and institutes
  • Extensive academic expertise in advanced materials, surface engineering, engineering design, material selection, factory floor planning, virtual reality, thermofluids, energy management, computer simulation and optimisation
  • State-of-the-art facilities for advanced manufacturing, composite manufacture, mechanical testing, metallographic studies, engine testing and computing
  • Part-funding (grant) towards external costs of innovation projects

Businesses must be engaged in the general area of transport equipment manufacturing and/or associated supply chains and be based in the Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire Local Enterprise Partnership area (D2N2 LEP).

SMEs will find it easier to collaborate with research institutes and accelerate their development and implementation of new products, processes and services.

Support may include one or more of the following:

  • Review of company research, innovation and development needs – a full company diagnostic to help you develop your innovation and growth plans
  • Identifying and signposting to appropriate research institutes for research and innovation collaborations – to enable you to progress your plans
  • Flexible project duration depending on the identified project suitable to achieve defined goals
  • Fully funded access to support and facilities from University of Derby and Loughborough University – different levels of assistance are available depending on your company’s needs
  • Part-funded collaboration with research institutes across the UK and further afield – via competitive call
  • Part-funding towards external costs relating to company based innovation projects – via simplified application process

D2EE Low Carbon

The partnership provides a suite of services to help SMEs in the D2N2 area to make carbon savings, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and support the shift towards a low carbon economy.

A range of services for SMEs are on offer based on an initial consultation and tailored to the specific needs of the business:

  • 12 hrs+ product development.
  • Access to cutting edge technology and expertise.
  • Attendance at 3 events from a menu of workshops.
  • 1:1 technical support for low carbon product development
  • Membership of our Low Carbon SME network.
  • Invitation to regional conference & events.

Funding available for SMEs in the D2N2 area who wish to make carbon savings, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and support the shift towards a low carbon economy.

Enabling Innovation

Focusing on ‘enabling technologies’, it aims to stimulate an innovation ecosystem designed to commercialise cutting edge R&D, support product and process innovation within SMEs and drive innovation through supply chains.

What is on offer?

  • Knowledge Exchange for Innovation (KEI) – Graduate support for businesses to undertake innovative projects up to 18 months
  • Workshop programmes designed to help businesses to innovate, explore new ideas and unlock their growth potential
  • Support for businesses to take on graduates via internship opportunities, allowing them to explore the benefits of employing students and graduates
  • Support for student and graduate enterprise
  • Services offered to businesses who seek to innovate new products and processes

Funding available for SMEs in the D2N2 area


Enscite offers Growth Programmes to businesses. Each programme includes the following:

  • Two 3 hour Interactive Workshops: to equip individuals with the skills and knowledge to improve business performance
  • Business Diagnostic and Feedback Report: to identify strengths, weaknesses and opportunities for change
  • Access to a Calendar of Events: further opportunities for networking and professional development
  • A Next Steps Session: to support continued development and business growth

The portfolio of workshops has been developed to tackle identified skills gaps within four key areas:

  • Logistics and Operations Management
  • Excellence Through Quality
  • Sustainable Supply Chains
  • Leadership and Management

Available for SMEs in the D2N2 area that:

  • Under 250 employees
  • Turnover not exceeding €50 million
  • Trading office located in the D2N2 LEP area


Start-Up Loan Fund

The fund aims to provide individuals with access to business start-up funding and expert personal support from business mentors to help develop business plans and access training. Find out more here:

Once a viable business plan is approved, applicants will be able to access financial support in the form of a loan of up to £10,000 with a repayment period of up to five years.

Delivered in Derbyshire by First Enterprise Business Agency working in partnership with the East Midlands Chamber (EMC), contact business adviser Peter Morgan who co-ordinates the scheme for EMC, on 01246 207207 or email

The Prince’s Trust

The Prince’s Trust supports unemployed young people aged 18 to 30 to work out if their business ideas are viable and whether self-employent is right for them. Depending on the outcome of this process, the programme can then offer mentoring support and for those that really need it, financial support to start a business or mentoring support to secure goals in employment, education or training.

For further information call 0800 842842 or visit the website:

Derbyshire Job Centre Plus

Derbyshire Job Centre Plus can help with recruitment or information about local labour availability, wage rates, employment subsidies or training. A package of assistance can be tailor-made to meet your needs. This may include; pre-employment courses to prepare people for specific entry criteria; Work Trials which allow job seekers and the business to test out a job for a couple of weeks before making a commitment; and help for applicants with tools, clothes etc.

In addition if you are registered unemployed and have been in receipt of either Job Seekers Allowance or Employment Support Allowance, then Job Centre Plus can advise you about New Enterprise Allowance which offers financial assistance to help you start a business.

More information can be found here

Contact Derbyshire Jobcentre Plus on 0845 604 3719 or visit the

Disability Dynamics

Disability Dynamics provide one-to-one support for people with disabilities who wish to start their own business or become self-employed. For more information, please call 01329 841814 or visit the website:

HM Revenues and Customs

HM Revenue and Customs offer on-line guidance and support to help people in business get their tax affairs right. HMRC’s aim is to build confidence on tax matters by providing accessible support in a variety of different formats. Click here to find one that suits you:

Loundsley Green Enterprise Coaching Project

Loundsley Green Enterprise Coaching Project can provide support to start-ups for people living in or close to Loundsley Green. For more information, please call Paul Davies 07753 605 272 or visit the website:

Source Derbyshire

The main objective of the Source Derbyshire website is to advertise potential new contracts that businesses can bid for and to make it easier for businesses to find out about new sources of potential revenue.

As well as new contract opportunities, you will also find a list of recurring contracts which you may also be able to bid for in the future. Visit the

Trusted Trader Scheme (Derbyshire County Council)

Trusted Trader Scheme can help individuals find honest and reliable traders who commit to doing a good job for a fair price. It includes plumbers, builders, roofers, decorators, joiners, electricians, gardeners, retailers and many more.

Businesses can use the Trusted Trader website to find out more about the benefits of being a Derbyshire Trusted Trader and learn how to sign up. Visit the website:

Voluntary and Community Group Funding

For information on grants available for Voluntary and Community Groups, visit the website: The Chesterfield and North East Derbyshire Council for Voluntary Service and Action Ltd. The contact details are:

Links CVS
No.1 Rose Hill East
S40 1NU

01246 274844

Business Finance Support Finder

The Business Finance Support Finder is an HM Government tool to help you access information about funding options in your area.  You may also find the D2N2 website useful in identifying  further potential routes to finance for your

D2 Energy Efficiency surveys and grants

Free energy audits are available for businesses in Derby and Derbyshire to help to reduce business costs, carbon emissions and increase the comfort of employees. Following an audit, project officers will work with you to implement the best options for your business.

Grants of up to £15,000 (and up to 65% of the cost) are available to eligible businesses to carry out energy efficiency improvements. Measures could include improved lighting, insulation, more efficient process equipment and renewable energy.

For more information see

To arrange your audit, contact Gemma Sylva, Carbon Smart Team Leader  e:  t: 01332 642029

Eligibility: Micro, small and medium sized businesses which are not more than 25% owned by a business which is not an SME. For grants: businesses trading over 90% business to business.

Support is also available to SMEs via the Low Carbon Business Network, who want to grow their low carbon business,  with fully funded business support and technical consultancy, from the University of Derby: SME’s that offer low carbon products and services or are interested in moving their business in this direction, can access this fully funded (free) programme of support to help them access new markets and the region’s largest supply chains.

Support is based on a business needs review, with workshops and 1-2-1 support, addressing:

  • Finance and funding for low carbon businesses
  • Environmental management systems & green accreditation
  • Leadership & entrepreneurial skills
  • Building a low carbon business case
  • Low carbon procurement and purchasing
  • Greening supply chains
  • LEAN green logistics
  • Sustainable marketing and brand integrity
  • Carbon accounting
  • Principles of circular economy
  • Growth Accelerator club and ‘meet the buyer’ events.

The D2 Energy Efficiency Project is run by a partnership between the University of Derby, Derby City Council and Derbyshire County Council and is part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020.

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