Rural businesses across North & West Northamptonshire (N&WN), the Chilterns and the Clay Vales can now apply for grants to help support their growth and sustainability. The grants can be worth up to £50,000 in the Chilterns and The Clay Vales or up to £100,000 in North & West Northants.

Ngage is working in partnership with the N&WN, Chilterns and Clay Vales LEADER Local Action Groups to deliver the funds which are part of the Rural Development Programme for England (RDPE), with the money made available through the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra).

All three LEADER programmes are designed to promote business growth and stimulate job creation, particularly amongst micro and small businesses. They are focused on rural areas and their priorities are: supporting small and medium rural businesses; farm diversification projects; forestry projects; tourism projects; rural services; and cultural and heritage projects.

Mike Furness, LEADER Programme Manager, said:

‘These three areas have significant rural economies and the LEADER Programme will support activity that helps businesses grow, drawing on the unique characteristics of each area while promoting the sustainable management of natural resources like woodlands. We are looking forward to working together with local businesses to support their growth and we want to encourage them get in touch to find out how we can help them.’

Philippa Batting, Managing Director of Ngage Solutions, said:

‘Our aim is to support growth and get the best deal for rural business across England’s Economic Heartland. This partnership brings together the local knowledge and experience of the LEADER Local Action Group’s and the expertise gained during Ngage’s successful delivery of the 2008-2013 LEADER programme. This sharing of ideas and efficient working will make our delivery in all three LEADER areas even stronger.’

In the 2008-2013, LEADER programme projects delivered by Ngage were some of the most successful in the UK. 124 projects were awarded funding which in turn sustained 206 jobs, created 117 new jobs and helped launch 39 new businesses.

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