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Whether you want to be your own boss, get that side-hustle off the ground, start generating some passive income, or just get a better work-life balance, we can help.

You'll receive free 1-2-1 advice and coaching, free workshops and training on how to set-up your own business, and £1,000 grant to help get you started.

HeadStart programme

Who is it for?

If you live, work, or intend to set up a business in the towns of Kirkby-in-Ashfield or Sutton-in-Ashfield, you could be eligible for support through HeadStart to get you started on your journey. Click here to check if your eligible.

What do I need?

Just an idea and the motivation to get started.

Our advisers will walk you through establishing a new business in those all-important early months. We will guide you through everything you need to know, and you don't need to have any knowledge or prior experience of running a business.

There is also no cost to access the programme for eligible individuals.

Programme content


Workshop 1:

Starting with a clear idea and target audience

  • Tools to plan your business
  • How to describe your idea quickly and clearly
  • Describing your target audience
  • Gathering information to give your idea a better chance of success.

Workshop 2:

Fundamentals of marketing and key resources required for your business

  • Developing your brand and key messages
  • How best to reach your customers
  • How to promote your product or service
  • Understanding the core resources needed to deliver your product/service.

Workshop 3:

Making sure the business can be run profitably

  • Considering start-up costs
  • Income and running costs of your business
  • Tax and national insurance
  • Applying for the grant and grant administration
  • Action planning for start-up

How to access to £1k grant

We'll work with you to address the areas set out above during the workshops. You will also have access to one-to-one support and advice in working towards producing an Enterprise Ready Plan to set out your business idea. At this point, you will be able to apply for the £1,000 grant to help get your idea off the ground.


This programme is specifically for people who live in Kirkby-in-Ashfield or Sutton-in-Ashfield or for those that live outside of  those areas but intend to set up a business there.

If you have any further questions, you can contact the team directly at

HM Government and Midlands Engine logo banner

This programme is part-funded by the Government's Towns Fund.

If you live outside of Kirkby or Sutton-in-Ashfield, you can access other support from the NTU Enterprise team.