Business Advice

Rutland County Council provides a range of services to help support new and existing businesses in the County. If you need any help, please contact our staff who can put you in touch with the right people 

  • Planning and professional advice: the Council can provide professional advice and information on a range of issues including planning, environmental health, building control regulations, waste management and refuse collection services.
  • Industrial, office and retail sites: the Council has information and can help you find suitable sites to locate your business.
  • Business advice and information: we can put you in touch with the right people to help get your business started and keep it going. We work with local business support agencies to ensure that Rutland businesses get the right help when they need it.
  • Financial assistance: whilst the Council does not provide business grants, various grants and loan schemes are available within the county. Contact our economic development manager for further advice on eligibility.
  • Events & Seminars: throughout the year the Council will arrange training events and network seminars to help local businesses keep up to date, meet local business support agencies and discuss any concerns they have.  

Other agencies that can provide advice to businesses, on a whole range of subjects can be found on the Department for Business,Innovation and Skills website.


Starting a New Business 

Thinking of starting a business

One of the major obstacles in the decision to set up a small business and become self-employed is a fear of the hurdles and the regulations associated with 'going it alone', as well as a worry about the viability of the venture. These need not be something to be concerned about if they are tackled in an organised way and if advice and guidance is sought from people who are experienced and trained to help.

The Enterprise Agency has help and guidance for a new business start-up. Because it is funded by government and private sponsorship it is provided at no-cost to the budding entrepreneur. The objective of the Agency is to encourage the creation of new businesses and to make sure these new businesses prosper and grow.

The Agency Advisers are qualified and are members of the Institute of Business Advisers. They are knowledgeable in what needs to done to make the experience of starting a new business enjoyable and rewarding.

You can find your nearest Enterprise Agency on the National Federation of Enterprise Agencies website.

The Council is also committed to providing a wide range of services to local businesses and the community at large. The Council's Economic Development Unit plays a key role in encouraging investment in the area. The Unit is also working to increase the quality and variety of work skills offered to residents, helping them to make the most of new employment and training opportunities as they are created.

More information about Community Economic Development is available.


Where can I find business opportunities within the area?

To look for businesses for sale in the area you can look in the local press, or visit some of the many websites that deal with the sale of businesses. A small selection are below


There are around 600 businesses in the UK that are franchised but what is franchising and would it be suitable for you?

It's a way of setting up in business for yourself but not on your own. With a franchise you run the business, but using methods that have been already tried and tested by another company, called the franchisor.

It is a way of being your own boss without many of the risk factors. However, you are ultimately answerable to the franchisor and this approach may not be for some people.


Can I get any financial support, grants or loans?

Whilst the Council does not provide business grants, various grants and loan schemes are available within the county. More information is on the Business Grants & Funding page.


Are there any courses that I may find useful?

Learndirect run a number of courses that may be useful to you including IT courses such as word processing, databases and spreadsheets. They also run essential business and management skills courses covering finance, marketing, personnel and health and safety.


What taxes will I have to pay?

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) have put information on their website especially for people starting in business. There is also a help line run by the Inland Revenue for newly self employed people. Telephone number 0845 9154 515, open from 8.00 am to 8.00 pm, Monday to Friday and 8.00 am to 4.00 pm, Saturday and Sunday.


Where can I get property advice?

For details of business properties currently available in the area, please contact the Rutland Economic Development Unit.


Do I need planning permission?

Planning holds a balance between the need for new development and the need to protect the environment and tries to ensure all development is environmentally sustainable. Construction methods also need to comply with the Building Regulations for which there is a separate set of approvals. More information can be found on the Building Control page.

- Working from home

 You do not usually need planning permission just to work from home but sometimes you do.

The key test is whether the residence has changed because of the business. If the answer to any of the following questions is 'yes', then you will probably need permission:

  • Is your house no longer chiefly a private residence?
  • Will your business result in a marked rise in traffic, people calling or working around the house or in out buildings?
  • Will your business involve obvious activities not usual in a residential street?
  • Will your business disturb your neighbours because of noise or smells?

Basically you need to ask yourself if the house is still mainly a home or has it become business premises? This is whatever the business, including using a room as an office, hairdressing, repairing cars, storing goods, using part of the house as a bedsit, running a 'bed and breakfast', providing childminding or music teaching.


Do I need a licence?

Many businesses require a licence eg.hairdressers, pet shops and places of public entertainment. For appropriate advice and guidance covering all aspects of trading, licensing and public health legislation contact .


What standards do I need to abide by?

Trading Standards and Consumer Services is a strategic service contributing to the well-being of the local and business community through its enforcement activities and advisory services.

Trading Standards can advise any business, consumer group, school or any other organisation on the work carried out by the Trading Standards service in the following areas:

More information can be found on the Trading Standards page.


Will I need to pay business rates?

Business rates information:


Where can I get rid of trade waste?

The Council provides a Commercial Waste and Recycling service.

The Council also carries out pest control work.


How do I recruit staff?

The Council is committed to attracting new jobs to the area and works in partnership with other agencies to ensure residents benefit from employment opportunities created. For more information visit the employment and training initiatives webpage.

Your local job centre will advise you on recruiting staff and will advertise positions in the local centres free of charge. For more information, advice and to find your local job centre look at the Business Link - Jobcentre Plus website 

You can also contact the local employment agencies to help recruit permanent or temporary staff although there will be a charge for this.

You can also advertise in the local press.


What is e-business?

e-business relates to businesses utilising new information and communication technologies such as e-mail, the world wide web and e-commerce.

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