Funding for Existing Businesses

Businesses in the Derbyshire Dales can access grant funding from various places.

Finding Grant Funding

Funding schemes come and go and it can be difficult to work out what you may be eligible for. To help you, the D2N2 Growth Hub's Grant Funding Guidance lists all the grant funding currently available.

Organisations such as the East Midlands Chamber, the D2N2 Growth Hub, the LEP Network, universities, Marketing Peak District and Derbyshire, and other non profit organisations, often provide grant funding, so it is worth looking at their individual websites to find current schemes. 

 Key points to remember when seeking grant funding

  • The majority of grants are not retrospective, so if you are looking to recover money you have already committed or spent, you are unlikely to be successful.
  • Grants are unlikely to be able to be used for general running costs of the business (that is, overheads including wage costs). Your business will be expected to be able to cover these costs itself.  The type of things that you may be able to seek grant funding for, is likely to be investment in new equipment, growth projects or improvements in productivity - something that will add value to the business but you will struggle to afford without a little extra help. 
  • Most grants have a minimum grant threshold so you need to check whether what you are looking to spend meets the grant requirements.
  • Check whether your business meets the eligibility rules; usually business size, sector and location.
  • Check the time frame for the grant process - obtaining grants is never a speedy process. You will not be able to spend until your grant has been approved.  Some grants take months to process; can you afford to wait before you spend?
  • Be prepared to complete the necessary application forms and provide all the evidence that is required. This may be a time consuming task, so consider how much time you will need to complete the application and compare it with the amount of funding you are seeking - is it a good investment of your time. 
  • Remember - don't let the funding criteria influence what is right for your business - it could end up costing you money. 

Who can help me find the right funding for my business?

If your business is located in the Derbyshire Dales, our Business Advice Service is here to help! We can guide you with advice on which grant schemes are available for your proposed project and help you consider your project application.  

Current Grant Funding Schemes

Grant funding is a rapidly changing picture but here are some of the schemes currently available for existing businesses in the Derbyshire Dales.

MadeSmarter is a scheme operating across the whole of the East Midlands and is therefore available in the Dales.   The programme is available to small and medium manufacturing enterprises and focuses on digital advice.  It offers grant funding and expert advice across 8 disciplines. 

Feast2 is run by the Food and Drink forum and offers a range of services including grants, to food and drink manufacturers in the area.

The Food & Drink Forum offer a range of services to food and drink manufacturers including grant funding, business mentoring, industry events, technical support, technical apprentices and industry specific events.  Grant funding is available to eligible businesses looking to purchase production equipment to help increase their growth, productivity and create jobs. 

In order to be eligible to access services through the Feast2 project, businesses must be a food and drink manufacturer and an SME in the D2N2 area. 

Marketing Peak District and Derbyshire Grant Scheme is aimed at businesses in the visitor economy.

Marketing Peak District and Derbyshire are currently offering business grants to support the development of assets such as online booking systems, updated websites and cashless payment facilities to help businesses respond to changes in customer behaviour.

Grants of £1,000 to £10,000 are available to support:

  • Covid-19 digitalisation - such as, updates to an existing website, implementation of online booking/cashless payments systems.
  • Cycling - such as, secure cycle storage and maintenance equipment for use by visitors.
  • Internationalisation - such as, website translation or the implementation of online booking/cashless payment systems to encourage international visitors

Businesses applying for funds must meet the following criteria; 

  • be part of the visitor economy
  • be located in Derbyshire
  • have fewer than 250 employees
  • have been trading for more than 12 months
  • have a business bank account

Successful applicants will receive a 50% grant towards the cost of the overall project with a minimum 50% grant contribution being £1,000 and the maximum £10,000.

 D2N2 Capital Growth Fund is open to all businesses in the D2N2 area.

Applicants must be able to demonstrate a trading history through provision of accounts ( profit & loss and balance sheet) - ideally 12 months accounts but they can accept 6 months by exception provided that the business has proved viable within that time and that there is justification to grow their business (e.g. need to create capacity due to growing order book, opportunity to develop new products or markets.)

Applicants must be able to demonstrate that they will be able to create at least one new job within 6 months of application.

There are some sector exclusions - e.g. businesses in the retail, financial and agricultural sectors are not covered by this programme. 

What costs can be covered?

  • This is a capital fund, which means that capital expenditure only, can be covered. In accounting terms, items that would appear on the balance sheet and not in the profit and loss statement.  These costs must enable your business to make a 'step change' that is, be able to do something that it could not previously do. Typical examples include, but are not restricted to, hardware, machinery, IT equipment.
  • They may be able to consider software if the licence to use is purchased outright (see also what can't be covered below) 
  • Projects must be ready to start within 3 months of application.

What costs can't be covered?

  • Non-capital costs such as marketing, consultancy etc
  • General running costs such as wages, rent, stock purchases
  • Software licences (annual or monthly usage licences)
  • Items to be purchased using asset finance or rental agreements
  • Vehicle purchased are not supported. 
  • No cost that has already been incurred.

How much can be applied for?

  • Grants are 30% of eligible costs up to a maximum of £10,000 in grant funding
  • The minimum project size that can be considered is £5,000 (this would attract the minimum grant of £1,500 at 30% of cost)
  • Only quotes/invoices for no more than £24,999 form any individual supplier can be considered.

How do I apply?

To register an interest and apply for a grant via this programme please send an email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with details of your contact name, business name and post code. 


The British Business Bank offers a Recovery Loan Scheme, which can be used for any legitimate business purpose including managing cash flow, investment and growth.