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Start a new business - support and advice

If you're starting a business or becoming self-employed, here's some information on where you can access support. 

​​​​​Start Smart - start a business or become self-employed support

Business Growth Hub, in partnership with Rochdale Borough Council, has launched its new Start Smart programme. The programme is designed to support Greater Manchester residents who have recently started their own business, want to start their own business, have recently become self-employed or want to find out if self-employment is right for them.

FREE support through workshops, events and one-to-one specialist advice includes: 

  • Analysis of business idea and exploration of viability
  • Advice on how self-employment may impact on personal circumstances
  • Legalities of becoming self-employed or starting a business
  • Business and cash flow planning
  • Advice on where to access grants and finance support
  • Marketing
  • Recruiting and managing staff
  • New product development
Get in touch with the Start Smart team

EnterprisingYou programme for self-employed people

EnterprisingYou is a government-funded programme specially designed to support self-employed people. To be eligible, you must be at least 18 years old, a full-time resident in Greater Manchester and earning less than £27,000 a year.

If you join the EnterprisingYou programme, you'll have access to:

  • 1:1 support from a business coach
  • Peer mentoring from people with experience of running a business
  • Personal finance support
  • Co-working sites across Greater Manchester
  • Support for health and wellbeing issues
  • Careers advice and guidance
  • High quality skills development and training support
Find our more or register for the EnterprisingYou programme

PeoplePlus Enterprise Hub - learn about starting a business

The PeoplePlus Enterprise Hub is an online learning tool. Sign up and you'll have access to a mix of expert articles, videos, blogs, podcasts, guides and downloads covering all stages of starting and growing a business.

With your own personal log-in and password, you can personalise the Hub to your own requirements and ensure that you maximise its value to you and your business.

More about PeoplePlus Enterprise Hub

Starting a food business

​​​​Setting up a food business can be a daunting task, with a wide range of legislation that must be complied with if you are not to fall foul of the law.

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) have produced a booklet entitled 'Starting up - Your first steps to running a catering business' which can be downloaded from their website.

Food Standards Agency - Starting a food business

Other support for new businesses

Here's a list of some of the support available for new businesses.

  • Ask About Business - support with business ideas, funding, running your business and more.
  • Co-opera​tives​ UK - help if you want to start your own co-operative, including a handy guide to the process.
  • FranchisingWorks - FREE support, advice and funding to those who are interested in supported self-employment but are open minded to the type of business they would like to operate or manage. Work from home, work from a van or even run your very own management style business.
  • GOV.UK - a range of advice on business and self-employed topics.
  • HM Revenue & Customs tutorial - FREE online tutorial aimed at anyone starting their own business and covers all the basic tax and National Insurance information.
  • Prince's Trust - provides specialist support for unemployed people aged between 18-30 who have a business idea. The programme will help you work out if your business idea is viable and if self-employment is right for you.
  • Rochdale Development Age​ncy (RDA) - offers a comprehensive package of support to businesses looking to set up, expand or invest in the borough. Services provided include locating property and land, identifying available business support services and help with recruitment and training needs.


​01706 926613

Phone: Monday-Friday 8.45am-4.45pm.

Economic Affairs Team
Number One Riverside
Smith Street
Rochdale OL16 1XU

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