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Council Services

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General Start-Up Assistance

There are a lot of things you need to think about when you’re starting a business. The information below is divided into topics to help guide you through the process.

Taking the First Step

  • The Business Link website provides a comprehensive guide to the things you need to think about including an on-line start-up organiser.
  • FREE advice from Business Initiative  and Business Enterprise Support for those wishing to go into business on their own
  • The Prince's Trust Business Programme provides money and support to help 18-30 year olds start up in business.
  • The Stoke & Staffordshire Business Helpline can provide advice to local businesses. Call 0300 111 8002 or e-mail
  • The New Enterprise Allowance helps unemployed people who want to start their own business by providing access to financial support – a weekly allowance worth up to £1,274 and a loan of up to £1,000 to help with start-up costs – as well as business mentoring from local entrepreneurs.
  • Disabled jobseekers who want to set up their own business through the New Enterprise Allowance are also eligible for Access to Work funding, which is targeted at young disabled people and people with mental health conditions.

Business Planning Advice Website

NB: Spend some time looking through all the other links on these pages – there are many other interesting pieces of advice about business planning.

Useful documents

A number of useful guides are appended at the bottom of this page including a business planning guide, a cash flow template and information about credit control and debt recovery.

 Company Structure

 Marketing and Sales

The Stoke & Staffordshire Business Helpline can provide advice to local businesses. Call 0300 111 8002 or e-mail

Do I Need a Licence for my Business?

  • Check out the requirements for private hire drivers, public entertainment, door supervisors, venues wanting to sell alcohol, house-to-house collections and permits for fund raising on the Borough Council’s Licensing Pages.
  • For food and animal related businesses, hairdressing and those that involve skin piercing check the requirements from the Environmental Health Team.
  • Use the website licence and permit checklist to determine what you might require.

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