Skip to content

Now closed, this project offered fully funded support (one-to-one advice, seminars, workshops, masterclasses) for entrepreneurs and SMES.

About the programme

The University of Chester is proud to have been a delivery partner of the Cheshire & Warrington Business Growth Programme.

With investment of European Regional Development Funding (ERDF), this innovative programme brought together key business support providers across Cheshire and Warrington to offer businesses access to growth support services.

The programme utilised the specialist expertise and facilities available from the delivery partners including Higher and Further Education partners, Local Authority Growth Teams and several science and business parks within the sub-region.

Subscribe to our newsletter


Anyone running a small-to-medium enterprise or aspiring entrepreneur in Cheshire and Warrington was entitled to receive 12 hours of support through this ERDF funded programme, with a range of activities depending on the individual needs:

  • Bootcamps - (2-3 days): Innovation/Growth and Start-Up
  • Workshops –(3-6 hours): Website and SEO, Branding and Logos, Marketing Strategy, HR (recruiting your first employee, attracting and retaining talent), Funding and Finance (income strategies, innovation, grant funding, VC funding), LinkedIn and  Instagram
  • Masterclasses – (1-2 days): Getting Retailer Ready, Product Photography.
  • Seminars - GDPR, HR, Finance, IP
  • One-to-one advice and mentoring – Each participant of the programme will be assigned to a Business Development Manager from the University who will conduct a business diagnostic to ensure the support is tailored accordingly
  • Peer-to-peer support – Participants will benefit from the support and advice of peers, sharing top tips and best practice.

To find out more about the support available from the University of Chester and our current business events and opportunities, please email, phone 01244 512880 or sign up for our Commercial Connections newsletter.

Festival of Professional Futures

Organised by The Business Growth Programme in February, the festival had something for everyone.  Businesses, professionals and students enjoyed a host of sustainability, marketing, net zero and virtual reality workshops together with networking and graduate career opportunities.  Students got to meet future employers and come away with wealth of professional skills.

All held at the University of Chester Business School and organised by its Business Growth Programme the event brought together businesses and students, as Louise Goodman, Business Development Manager explains:
“This collection of events brings together UoC staff, students and BGP businesses to support business and community, networking & collaboration, innovation, entrepreneurship, digital transformation and the transition to net zero.  We’re looking forward to seeing students’ and businesses getting set for the future in our week-long celebration of business growth support delivered through the University of Chester.”

Thornton Science Park     

  • Opportunity to forge close collaborative research and development relationships with academic experts.
  • Access to students on placements for short-term projects.
  • Ability to recruit undergraduate talent emerging from the University’s Faculty of Science Business and Enterprise.


  • Two days’ funded support with product development in our Development Kitchen.
  • A minimum of 12 hours of funded support conducting Consumer Research using our Sensory Suite or nutritional analysis and microbiological testing.

Riverside Innovation Centre

  • Offers start-up business office space and professional conferencing and meeting facilities.

Case Studies

Read about businesses who are feeling the benefits of business growth support from the University of Chester.

Top Tips for your business growth

Read the latest top tips from our Business Development Managers.

Meet our delivery partners

Ruby Star Associates Ltd

We help businesses, social enterprises and charities of all shapes and sizes grow, build accountable teams, generate more income, and innovate. We help leaders free up their time, surround themselves with brilliance and focus on the stuff that really matters. We are all about enterprise, entrepreneurship and making a massive difference.

So much of what we are told about how to run our business, how to lead a team and how to develop strategy just isn’t based on any evidence at all. Worse, much of it has been proven not to work. We start from the academic research so that we can talk about the things which are most likely to work for a business like yours, in your sector at your stage of growth. Our passion for research doesn’t stop with content, we use research to inform how we deliver sessions – that is why we don’t use PowerPoint or slides and we don’t believe that interaction starts and ends with post-it notes. We develop highly engaging, highly effective, game-based learning experiences which have been proven to deliver big results.

Follow: Twitter

Contact Information

Business Growth