Chance of cash aid for rural businesses

RURAL East Anglian businesses including those in north Norfolk - could get a helping hand to beat the recession as a part of a �10m initiative which could create or maintain up to 380 countryside jobs.

RURAL East Anglian businesses including those in north Norfolk - could get a helping hand to beat the recession as a part of a �10m initiative which could create or maintain up to 380 countryside jobs.

Firms and would-be entrepreneurs in three areas of Norfolk and parts of North Suffolk, are being urged to bid for the cash, which is now sitting in the coffers waiting to be spent, thanks to a successful bid for European funding by Norfolk County Council and the Norfolk Rural Business Advice Service (NRBAS).

And with applicants expected to provide some match funding that could double the boost to the local economies.

Three areas have been selected for the project which could give help in the form or training or business grants to would-be firms or even farms looking to diversify.

The chosen areas are:

The Brecks - cross border bid covering the Swaffham and Thetford area, and southwards to Mildenhall.

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Norfolk Coast and Broads - from Heacham right around the coast to north of Caister, and the Broads area.

Waveney Valley - cross border bid, taking in the market towns of Diss, Harleston, Beccles and Bungay.

The scope of firms and organisations eligible to apply range from farmers, charities, woodland owners and forestry businesses, training providers, and those in the tourism industry.

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