Economic Development Business News

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Business News: Webinars & Useful Information

Rural Enterprise Exmoor Vision Survey

Rural Enterprise Exmoor 2

Rural Enterprise Exmoor has reviewed business activities across the moor, to gain a wide range of views from businesses around the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead – particularly as a result of the Covid-19 restrictions. You may already have contributed to this work, which was undertaken for us by Wavehill.

We are now going on to develop an economic vision. This will be used to guide the work of Exmoor National Park Authority as well as other organisations who have greater roles in economic development. It will ensure Exmoor's needs and opportunities are well known and accounted for.

Ash Futures have been appointed to support us in this work.  As part of their work they would like to invite you to complete a short online survey about your views on how the economy of Exmoor could or should develop.

Exmoor is one of 15 National Parks in the UK. The National Parks are world-class landscapes with the power to inspire everyone. They’ve been designated because of their special qualities such as natural beauty, wildlife and cultural heritage. They are also living and working landscapes. We are therefore seeking to develop a vision to sustain and grow Exmoor’s rural economy in harmony with its National Park Status.

The survey asks for your views looking forward 10 years. What do you think or hope the Exmoor economy might look like?

Business Survey: For anyone  who owns, manages or works in a business within or around Exmoor National Park: Click here

The survey will open until 16th April.

Food and Drink Mapping Work 2021

Somerset West and Taunton Council (SWT) and Sedgemoor District Council (SDC) would like to commission the services of a specialist, agency or group of consultants to help in providing research support to a new project to support the food and drink sector and ancillary businesses across the SWT and Sedgemoor geographical areas. Work will include gathering data on SWT and Sedgemoor’s food network specifically focusing on producers, retailers and other forms of customers with a view to establishing more localised and sustainable supply chains.

For more Information: Click here


West Coast 360 Skill Up Somerset

West Coast 360

To support our local businesses to get ready after Covid restrictions are  lifted, Somerset West and Taunton, West Coast 360 and Skill Up West Somerset are pleased to offer FREE training to employers, their staff and anyone interested in working in the hospitality and leisure industry. These courses are for West Somerset residents whether you are returning to work after furlough, wishing to gain more skills or looking to start a career in this sector.

Westcost 360 Welcome Host Gold Customer Service

Taunton Chamber of Commerce

Taunton Chamber of Commerce

Taunton Chamber of Commerce - Eventbrite Upcoming free webinars:

We exist to support and connect companies, bringing together local businesses and organisations to build new relationships, share best practice, foster new opportunities and provide practical support.

Because we sit at the heart of the local community, we are uniquely placed to help businesses of every size and sector to thrive. This includes the active role we undertake to improve the local commercial environment to the benefit of all.

We provide a respected voice to the Taunton business community, and the ability to present a critical mass of opinion ensures that the Chamber is taken seriously, and that therefore the business voice of Taunton is heard and understood.

Join us today! Call us on 01823 230898 to discuss membership, or easiest of all, complete your registration and pay your membership subscription online:

Federation of Small Businesses


Federation of Small Businesses -

a. Event Calendar: FSB Upcoming Business Webinars

Join us for our virtual events, including networking, business surgeries and webinars, designed to help you find advice, support and guidance for your small business during the COVID-19 pandemic. The events are free and open to all small businesses and the self-employed across the UK.

b. Federation of Small Businesses - Skills Hub:

Running your own business means you have to be an expert not only in your own field, but also in marketing, social media, accounting, HR - the list goes on! 

We have created the FSB skills hub to support you with the resources you need to ensure business continuity in the immediate future and for the longer term. 

Find answers to your legal questions, demystify the digital world, build a robust business model and unlock the potential of your FSB membership.


Somerset Skills and Learning


As the days are getting longer and our natural energy and enthusiasm improves, spring is the perfect time to refocus, plan and refresh... Whilst we're all patiently waiting for the world to open up, take time to consider if your business could benefit from an apprentice or trainee. New, improved employer incentives mean you could get a welcome cash boost as well as fresh new talent! Plus, we're excited to showcase our brand new Level 3 qualifications - and this is just the beginning. There are more to follow in the next few months including Management, Counselling, Mental Health, Advanced Digital Skills, Supporting Teaching & Learning in Schools, Childcare and Principles of SEND.

For more information and Featured Courses and Workshops: Click Here

Buisiness West: Start- Up Support Package

If you’re in Somerset and thinking of, or have already set up your business as a start-up, but are struggling with some of the more daunting aspects, we can help! 

With our Pre-Start and Start-Up Support Package, you’ll have everything you need to get the groundwork nailed and your first customer on the books.

Getting clarity over every aspect of your business will give you a sure-fire roadmap to success. This pre-start and start-up support will allow you to avoid any pitfalls in your new business, consider important aspects for future businesses such as a green policy and cyber security, and save you time and money by giving you everything you need in one place.

The support is delivered as an array of easily-digestible workshops by specialists which each cover a different area of your business to ensure that you don’t miss any of the important stuff.

To find out more information: Click Here


Minehead Tourist Information

Minehead Tourist Information

 Minehead Tourist Information Newsletter: View here

The aim of the newsletter is to let you know about opportunities, local events, training and other information that will be of relevance to your business or information you might want to pass on to your customers.  Right now we're focusing on Covid-19 support for you and your business.

Stronger Somerset

District councils have welcomed chance to have a say on proposals for change to local government in Somerset 

Local Government Secretary Rt Hon Robert Jenrick MP has launched a consultation on proposals for reform of local government in Somerset. The 8-week consultation started on Monday 22 February and will run until Monday 19 April. All Somerset councils recognise that the current system does not work well enough.  

The Stronger Somerset proposal, put forward by the four district councils, sets out a plan for the county’s needs now and into the future to deliver better jobs, affordable homes, stronger communities and a carbon zero county.   

Stronger Somerset describes two new unitary authorities for the county, which it describes as small enough, so they know you and you know them, but big enough to be effective and economic. They will meet the needs of their local communities and work together for the benefit of the whole county.​ 

Western Somerset and Eastern Somerset have different characteristics, comprising distinct functional economic areas, travel to work areas and housing markets. In addition, there are complex varying needs of physical geography, climate, demographic divergence and connectivity. 

Stronger Somerset also recognises that its ambitions need to be supported by an ambitious and progressive devolution agenda that can help the county become a positive net contributor to the Exchequer. Stronger Somerset envisages a Combined Authority ready to deliver a themed devolution deal. Local government reorganisation is the first step on this journey. It identifies seven devolution themes: • Boosting business and productivity • Carbon neutrality and climate resilience • Delivering better digital connectivity • Transport infrastructure and physical connectivity • Improving skills and social mobility • Creating thriving places • Delivering sustainable housing development. Find out more about the Stronger Somerset proposal.  

To respond to the Government’s consultation, please click here  You can also respond by email or post.  

The Government is also consulting on Somerset County Council’s alternative proposal, One Somerset.