START-UP businesses are to be given the chance to move into a historic Burton building free of charge as part of a Government scheme, it has been revealed.
Small and medium sized firms taking their first steps into the world of business will be allowed to battle it out to secure the town’s former county court, which closed earlier this year amid much acrimony.
The dormant building, along with the former Army careers office, also in Station Street, will be offered to start-up businesses for free as part of the Government’s ‘Space for Growth’ scheme.
It represents quite a coup for the town, with the two sites among only four in the latest batch in the West Midlands to have been chosen as part of the scheme, with the other two in Birmingham.
Paying to secure or rent office space is often a costly process for firms which have little cash to begin with, and with many going to the wall within a year of setting up, the idea of the scheme is to take away that difficult first hurdle and give them a chance of succeeding.
It means that at least some positive news for the town will come out of the closure of the county court, which finally succumbed after a three-year battle by MPs in Burton and South Derbyshire to save it.
Chris Plant, director of Burton and District Chamber of Commerce, said the move would act as a huge leg-up to fledgling businesses.
He said: “We welcome the commitment by the Government to help entrepreneurs, start-ups and social enterprises to get going. They need the support and access to facilities that will make the difference and increase their chances of a successful future.
“East Staffordshire already has an excellent business start-up survival rate and this will add further to this. We hope the scheme will encourage people to fulfil their entrepreneurial dream by making it easy for them to set up a new venture giving them and the economy a much–needed boost.”