Business Support in Ashford

Welcome to information about the Business Support available in the Borough of Ashford.

Starting a Business

1:1 Business Advice Appointments
These one hour face to face sessions are an ideal opportunity to talk through your ideas, challenges or concerns with a qualified, experienced business adviser Book here
Starting in Business   FREE This group session will guide you through the basics of a formal business plan. An essential workshop for start ups that have a clear business idea Book here
Is self employment right for me?
A small informal group session that explore the pros and cons of being self employed and looks at some of the practical considerations Book here
Start Up Loan Application Workshop
FREE weekdays
Saturdays £15 + Vat
If you’re applying for a start up loan this short informal group session will help you make the best of your proposal and speed up the process Book here
Sales & Marketing Workshop
The key to surviving the early years in business is having the right skills. This one day group workshop will make sure you have the best chance possible Book here
Small Business Finance Workshop
Running a successful business involves understanding the numbers and this one day group session will be essential. Book here

Running a Business

1:1 Business Advice Appointments
This one hour face to face session is an ideal opportunity to talk through your business ideas, challenges or concerns with an experienced business adviser. We can update you on the latest support in the County and put you in touch with the experts you need. Book here
Business Skills Workshops
We run a range of business training workshops across the county. From export documentation and sales to social media and employment law Book here
Chamber Mentoring Programme
This close support programme is designed to help you make the changes you need in your business. Our highly experienced Mentor will work with you to identify the outcomes required and then agree a six month programme of activity drawing on local expertise and brokering additional support. Email for info
First Line Debt Advice for Business
Running a business doesn’t always go to plan and taking advice at the right time can be crucial. The Chamber offers a confidential service to talk through the options available and connect you to the experts you need. Book a 1:1 appointment. Book here

Grants, Loans and Funding

Start Up Loan Start Up Loan Up to £9500 at low interest (typical 6%) for start up businesses. Interest only payments available in the first year. Free mentor support in year 1. Check you qualify by downloading the FAQ then book a workshop Apply here
Marsh Million Marsh Million Interest free loan of up to £10K for businesses trading in and around the Romney Marsh area. Businesses must contribute a % of the funding required and be creating or safeguarding jobs. Free application support provided both before and during application. Apply here
Equity/Angel Finance We work closely with the Kent Investors Network to help businesses access equity investment. Working from a £50m investment fund, applicants are invited to put forward proposals at a quarterly interview panel. Apply here