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Business support and advice

Business support and enterprise agencies

Organisations, enterprise agencies and Council departments that offer services and advice to businesses.

Sources of support


Apprenticeships are designed by Sector Skills Councils. They work with industries to develop course content and to make sure training is relevant.

The National Apprenticeship Service helps to fund the training.

Heart of the South West Growth Hub

Free business advice and support services for businesses and start ups in Devon, Somerset, Plymouth and Torbay.

Visit the Heart of the South West Growth Hub website.

Business rates

We administer business rates in Plymouth working to regulations controlled by Central Government.

Visit GOV.UK for an overview of business rates.

Open to Export

Free online information service from The Institute of Export & International Trade. Open to Export help small UK businesses get ready to export and expand internationally.

Visit the Open to Export website.


You will need planning permission for most building works or changes of use of land or buildings

The Council’s planning team can provide advice and information on development proposals. You can talk to them before you make a planning application.

Find out how to get planning pre-application advice.

Freedom of Fear campaign

The Freedom From Fear campaign works to prevent violence, threats and abuse against workers.

It is run by the Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers. (USDAW)

Find more information on the USDAW website.


City College Plymouth

City College Plymouth is a leading provider of training and business services.

The Employer Solutions team works with businesses and organisations.

They offer:

  • general business and management training
  • bespoke training designed to meet exact needs
  • help for businesses recruit, train and qualify apprentices

Find out more about the Employer Solutions Team.

Plymouth Marjon University

The Plymouth Marjon University works closely with businesses.

They offer a range of services to employers including:

  • HE-level flexible training for those already in employment
  • continuing professional development
  • short and industry-related courses from levels 1 to 7
  • employer advisory groups for course content
  • student placement projects
  • applied research and knowledge transfer partnerships

For more information visit the Plymouth Marjon University website.

University of Plymouth

Enterprise Solutions is a service provided by the University of Plymouth. It helps businesses to access a range of expertise, services and facilities, including:

  • entrepreneurship and business start-up
  • expertise and research
  • facilities (laboratories, meeting rooms or accommodation)
  • funding
  • knowledge transfer
  • student/graduate recruitment
  • skills and training

Visit the Enterprise Solutions website
Phone 0800 052 5600