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Durham Business Opportunities Programme

Business Durham has reached the half way point in the Durham Business Opportunities Programme and we thought we would give you an update.

Our first strand of support helped nurseries take advantage of the funded 30 hour childcare and has been a great success. We worked with 48 business to help hone their entrepreneurial skills. In Derwentside 14 providers were able to access the support. Over 1000 hours of support and 15 full day workshops have been delivered - all under fire of small toys and crayons!

The second cohort of businesses recently showcased their products and services at EMCON including our very own Gavin Forster who was busily taking photos and videos all day. The first year was successful with 12 of the 21 incubator businesses receiving business valued at £200,000 from the exhibition. We have committed to running the incubator in 2019 as well.

The Creative strand was launched in April and so far 73 creative practitioners have attended free workshops covering a variety of topics including; Opportunities & Networking in the Arts and Science Sector, Protect Your Creativity, Creating New Work Inspired by DU Art Collections and Social Media. The initial Thrive and Grow Workshops have been really popular. November will see our first residential at Ushaw College. A perfect change for all you workaholics to spend a Friday and Saturday in everything creative.

Our most recent strand is aimed at food and drink businesses. Support will enable businesses to look at growth and what they need to have in place to be able to scale up. This will combine one-one support with in-depth events on topics such as food labelling, food testing, menu reviews and many more. There will also be the opportunity to showcase products at the Bishop Auckland food festival held in April.

For more information or a chat about your business email michael.harriott@durham.gov.uk.