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The Big House

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The Big House programme offers a range of bespoke support to growing and established businesses within the creative and digital industries. No matter what stage or size you are, if you are trading and seeking to grow, we can support you.


Details on The Big House programme at NTU

The Big House, ERDF and Midland Engine Logos

About the programme

We support the growth of established creative and digital small businesses within the Nottingham and Derbyshire (D2N2) region. Our tailored workshops, talent grants and mentoring have been specifically designed for established businesses trading over 12 months, whilst our Enterprise team support businesses at all stages that are starting, growing or innovating. If you are a digital or tech founder ambitious for success, then The Big House could be for you.

Support for growing your business

We tailor our events and business support, depending on your stage and size so that you receive the maximum benefit from the support on offer.

Workshops and mentoring 

CreaTech Growth Accelerator

Applications are now open for an ambitious cohort of creative and digital SMEs to join our CreaTech Growth Accelerator. Participant successes include securing £1million of funding and one business supported to become a University Spin Out. An opportunity for big conversations, make connections and open doors – as part of a small, supportive group of likeminded founders and CEOs. There is also scope for scope for individual mentoring and business advice.

Friday 3rd February12:00 - 14:30CreaTech Growth Accelerator Lunch & Launch EventNottingham City Centre

Download the information brochure

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Managing your Agency for Profitable Growth: Agency, Culture, Structure, Transformation

A bespoke series of workshop and mentoring support for Founders and Directors of creative and digital sector service agencies. Participants will benefit from; two full day tailored workshops, peer group support and optional further expert one-to-one support.

Wednesday 22 February 202309:30 - 16:30Workshop 1: Drivers of Agency ValueNottingham City Centre
Wednesday 8 March 202309:30 - 16:30Workshop 2: Coaching for growth. Nottingham City Centre

If after completing either session you would like further one to one support, the project team will work with you to find an expert mentor to provide you with up to three hours of further one to one support with specific challenges

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Grants for Growth and Talent

As a creative and digital SME based in the Nottinghamshire or Derbyshire area, we can offer funding to help you recruit graduates, grants on offer include:

Elevator Grant

The Big House Project recognises the difficulties that face existing Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in the Creative & Digital Industries post pandemic who may have little or no track record in accessing finance. The Grant can be used to access a wide range of expertise - examples include web developers, software developers, product designers, marketing support, legal expertise. It is not possible to give an exhaustive list so applicants are first asked to submit an expression of interest.

The grant reimburses 40% of the project cost.

Minimum Total Project Cost: £2500

Minimum Grant: £1000

Maximum Grant: £3000

Maximum Total Project Cost: No maximum project cost but the maximum grant awarded will only ever be £3000

Our team will then be in touch to advise if we can support your project. The expertise must be procured on a short-term basis to work on a set activity/project and not be part of the business’s day to day operations.

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Graduate Talent Grant

As a creative and digital SME based in the Nottinghamshire or Derbyshire area, we can offer funding to help you recruit our NTU graduates with a 20% salary contribution for up to 5 months of a graduate placement.

To find out more about hiring a graduate and receiving a grant for your business, get in touch with the team at and we will guide you through the application process.

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Accelerator for digital and tech business

Big House Logo

The Big House Accelerator is open to talented, passionate founders and entrepreneurs from the digital and technology sectors in Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire who want to fast-track their ideas and businesses.

Delivered by industry experts, and anchored by our Accelerator facilitators, you'll receive high-value, high-quality learning, mentoring and support, bespoke for your needs. As part of an exclusive, carefully selected group of digital CEOs, The Big House Accelerator will support you to fast-track your business, open doors and prepare for your big conversations and opportunities.

Read about the cohort of businesses currently undertaking our Accelerator programme.

As part of this programme you will have access to:

  • An Accelerator facilitator who will conduct a deep dive diagnostic, and provide regular mentoring to help you get the most out of the support on offer, with a specific focus on strategically looking forward towards the end of the programme
  • Focused small-group workshops led by a network of industry and academic specialists
  • Academic expertise, research and resources - including bespoke postgraduate research projects
  • Peer learning and support in an informal group of founders and entrepreneurs

All businesses interested in the Accelerator programme will be invited to participate in our selection process, allowing us to achieve an optimal blend of businesses to go through the programme together.

Is your business eligible?

To access the free Big House support at Nottingham Trent University, your business must be:

  • an SME (small and medium sized enterprises must have less than 250 employees)
  • in the creative or digital sector
  • registered with HMRC or Companies House
  • trading or ready to trade
  • in Nottinghamshire or Derbyshire (Not sure? Check the D2N2 map)

Check our eligibility definitions

More about The Big House programme

Supported by the European Regional Development Fund and the East Midlands Engine, The Big House programme is made up of a consortium of partners, who are best placed to help lift potential ideas off the ground, support the start-up process, all the way to working with established businesses ambitious for growth. Find out more about the expertise of each of our partners, and how we can support you with the skills, knowledge and connections you need to succeed.

We have secured funding from the European Regional Development Fund which means that most services provided as part of this programme are of no cost to eligible businesses.

The Big House is one of many projects which D2N2 has supported with European funding. Further details of these projects and much more, can be found on the D2N2 Growth Hub site.

Get in touch

If you have any questions, or want to find out more about NTU's offer in The Big House programme, get in touch with The Big House team via:

Telephone: +44 (0)115 848 4042