National support for your business

hands on support for your business

The following organisations provide various levels of support for start-ups and growing businesses.  In some cases, they provide free basic support.  For example Enterprise Agencies will provide free support for individuals who live in their district or borough.

However, please check individually, as some organisations/agencies charge for additional services. Please note that these links will take you to third party websites.  Every effort has been made to ensure that the information below is correct.  We cannot be held responsible or liable for the information contained on third party websites.



The British Library Business & IP Centre

Business and intellectual property information, workshops, events and one to one advice

Tel: 0207 412 7901



Business Start-up 

Exhibitions throughout the year on everything related to starting up.

Visit Website:


The Bright Ideas Trust

Provides business support to 16-30 year olds in London who are currently not in employment, education or training (NEET) or from socially excluded groups and are looking to start their own business.   Can also assist with brokering start-up loans



Business Finance and Support Finder (

Central Government portal, part of the Gov.UK website, provides details of where you can obtain either funding, a grant, a loan, or support for your business.  Select the industry you are in, which stage your business is at, how it is structured, where you are located, and then you will be provided with a list of external websites to visit, providing you with further detais



The Centre for Fashion Enterprise

London’s pioneering business incubator that supports and nurtures emerging fashion design talent.

Tel:  Tel: 020 7514 2295




Provides support for entrepreneurs, start-ups and businesses in the creative and cultural industries.



Enterprise Nation

Support for home-based businesses




Business support led by disabled people in London, to help disabled-led businesses

Tel: 0845 671 7173



Growth Accelerator

Provides support for growing businesses. They will discover new insights into your business growth, team you up with proven experts in your industry to help you determine how best to grow your business.




The government’s online self-help portal which incorporates information from the previous “Business Link” websites and “Directgov”



HM Revenue & Customs

Information of UK’s tax and customs




Provides online Small Business Advice (articles, guides, plans, factsheets), Small Business Directory & Small Business News, plus Business Services for SMEs, Entrepreneurs & Startups.




A portal which enables you to search thousands of business funding opportunities



Leonard Cheshire Disability 

Supports thousands of disabled people both in the UK and in more than 50 other countries, with physical impairments, learning difficulties and long-term health conditions, as well as their carers, friends and families. Funds Enabled4Growth detailed above. Also co-hosts the Stelios Award for Disabled Entrepreneurs in the UK. Visit:

Tel: 020 3242 0200 Fax: 020 3242 0250



National Debtline

Business Debtline providing free confidential advice for small businesses

Tel: 0800 197 6026



PCG (Free online resources, Membership required for some services)

Provides support for UK Freelancers and contractors, plus lobbys government for policy changes which migh affect freelancers and contractors





The Prince’s initiative for Mature Enterprise, providing enterprise support for people over 50

Tel: 0800 783 1904



The Prince’s Trust Enterprise support for 18-30 year olds

Tel: 0207 543 1400



Shell LiveWire Free online business support for young entrepreneurs aged 16 to 30. They also  have regular competitions and awards

Tel: 0191 423 6229



Start-up Loans:  The government funded start-up loans scheme offers start-up loans to 18-30 year olds to start-up a business. Applicants need to apply, their application and business plan will be assessed, and if successful, they will be awarded a loan (of up to £2,500).



UK Trade & Investment (UKTI)

The Government department which encourages foreign direct investment and helps UK-based companies to export elsewhere.

Tel:  020 7215 5000



Is there a National Service that you either know of, use or need that might be missing from this list?  Please click here to let us know.



I’m Mary Cummings, a ghostwriter, collaborator and all round word doctor. I help business owners write and publish business books; I'm also passionate about helping creative freelancers find work that they love - their work sweet spot with work on their terms, projects they love and clients who are a dream to work for.