City : Enterprise Centre : Now You're Started
All these organisations will be happy to offer you support in running your business even after the initial set-up period. Remember that most start-ups will fail in their first year, so making the most of the support offered by these networks could make all the difference to your business.
The Prince's Trust
The Prince’s Trust Enterprise Programme helps young people interested in self employment to explore and test their ideas, write plans and start their own businesses. If also provides money and support to help young people start up in business. It has excellent advice on all aspects of starting your own business.
Established in 2001 by a successful entrepreneur, Fredericks Foundation aims to help people who want to run their own business but are unable to obtain the necessary support. The Foundation is currently expanding so not only is it able to offer support to new businesses but also established SMEs who need financial help but are unable to access it via the banks.
Peter Jones Academy
The Peter Jones Academy runs at Reading College and is designed to give young people real life hands on experience of running a business. It gives students skills which will help them towards becoming an entrepreneur. However, they only work with young people who are enrolled on their programme.
The Real Business Club
The Real Business Club provides innovative events and hands-on Business Development Workshops to help professionals and entrepreneurs starting in business, or moving up to the next level, to get established and grow.
Reading Borough Council
A great local resource for help and support businesses with subjects such as licensing and business rates (if applicable). There is further information here.
Federation of Small Businesses (FSB)
The FSB aims to be the largest and most effective organisation promoting and protecting the interests of the self-employed and small businesses in the UK. It is the UK’s largest campaigning pressure group promoting and protecting the interests of the self-employed and owners of small firms and has 200,000 members across 33 regions and 194 branches.
The Chamber of Commerce
The Thames Valley Chamber of Commerce Group, works with businesses across Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and Swindon to help them achieve their full business potential. They do this by offering members a range of services including business advice, networking events, training and international trade support.
Business Link will give you information about starting up and running a business in the UK, including help if you’re self employed or a sole trader.