Big money for High Street innovation

Nailsea High Street

Nailsea High Street - Credit: Archant

BIG money grants will be available to people and businesses who come up with good ideas to inject new life into North Somerset’s struggling high streets.

Cash awards of up to £10,000 are being offered by North Somerset Council in a new attempt to revitalise local retail trade.

The funding has been handed down by the Government in the wake of a nationwide review of high street trading carried out by TV businesswoman Mary Portas.

In total, North Somerset has been given £100,000 to dish out to smaller projects around Clevedon, Nailsea, Portishead and beyond.

Money will be made available for businesses, new start-ups and community groups with creative and innovative ideas to enhance the vitality of their town.

A key criteria on which ideas will be judged, will be how they measure up to the recommendations of Portas’ 2011 review.

She called for high streets to become multi-functional social hubs, and advocated experimentation to renew the appeal of the traditional shopping trip.

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Ideas which embrace this call for bravery and innovation could be rewarded with grants of up to £10,000.

North Somerset’s executive member responsible for economic development, Elfan Ap Rees, said: “This funding is a great opportunity for businesses and communities to either ‘start up’, experiment with a different way of doing business, or use a vacant retail premise for a new and alternative use.

“We hope that such projects will help to make the high street look a more attractive and vibrant place to be and breathe new life into certain areas of our towns.”

People and businesses with ideas they want to pitch for funding have until March 11 to submit their suggestion.

For further information on the criteria, guidance notes and an application form visit

Alternatively, you can call 01934 426341 or email