Forest Holidays and The Prince’s Countryside Fund launch annual £5,000 Rural Start-Up Fund

December 9, 2019

Forest Holidays and The Prince’s Countryside Fund have launched a Rural Start-Up Fund to support entrepreneurs and start-up businesses in the UK countryside.

Forest Holidays has partnered with The Prince’s Countryside Fund, set up in 2010 by HRH The Prince of Wales, with the aim of supporting sustainable rural economies. A total of £5,000 is available in the Rural Start-Up Fund in 2020, to be awarded to one winning business or shared between a number of rural startups.

Tom Youngs, England rugby player, farmer, and ambassador for The Prince’s Countryside Fund said: “We all know how hard it is to set up a new rural business. The Prince’s Countryside Fund and Forest Holidays’ Rural Start-Up Fund is an excellent opportunity to offer a helping hand to rural entrepreneurs embarking on a new business venture. In addition to financial support, winners will have the opportunity to receive mentoring support from a relevant member of the Forest Holidays team for 12 months. This is a really exciting opportunity, which I am proud to support.

Bruce McKendrick, Chief Executive Officer, Forest Holidays said: “Playing an active part in the life of the villages and towns surrounding our locations has always been extremely important to us, but we still want to do more to help build a sustainable future for the rural economy. Inevitably, one of the biggest barriers to setting up a new business is the initial financial commitment and business support needed. Our new start-up grant programme aims to give entrepreneurs and start-up businesses the help required to overcome these initial challenges to grow their business locally.

Applicants must be 18 and over, and embarking on a rural business venture. They must be able to demonstrate how their business will, in some manner, support rural communities, promote conservation of the countryside, or support rural sustainability.

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