Starting a new business
Starting a new business
Support and advice
If you are starting a new business in Bristol, you have access to a wide range of new business support services:
- Department for Business, Innovation and Skills website for help with business finance, cash flow, credit and investment needs.
- GOV.UK also provides information, advice and support needed to start, maintain and grow a business.
- Outset Bristol is a free programme to help you set up and grow your business through workshops, online resources and advisor support.
- BRAVE Enterprise is an independent Bristol-based, not for profit organisation that offers advice, training and consultancy services.
- Business West represents and works with over 18,000 businesses across the region, delivering a range of support and events.
- Enterprising West of England can help you with start-ups, getting investment ready, scaling up your business and working efficiently.
- The Federation of Small Businesses runs a number of events in Bristol and members can get information such as factsheets on starting and running a business.
- The West of England Growth Hub has access to a network of business knowledge and skills partners.
- Planet Mark Start! is specifically to help small businesses, sole traders, start-ups and entrepreneurs embrace and experience the benefits of sustainability.
- South Bristol Enterprise Support for help expanding or starting your South Bristol business.
Licences and permits
You may need a licence or permit to run your business. Read our A to Z of the types of licence available to find out who to contact for further information.
You might need planning permission or building regulations approval for your business. Check our planning and building regulations for more information.
Health and safety
Your business will have a legal duty to provide a safe and healthy place of work for your staff, customers, visitors and contractors. More advice about this on our health and safety page.
When starting a new food business it is essential to obtain information on food safety regulations. We can help you with information on registering your food business, approved food business, food safety inspections and food safety training.
Selling to the council
Bristol City Council is one of the largest organisations in the area, so you might want to think about offering services to us. Find out more on our tenders and contracts page.
Business rates are charged on commercial properties. Small businesses can get a discount called 'rate relief'.
Business waste and recycling
Businesses should either arrange a collection of their rubbish from their premises using a commercial contractor or they can take their business waste to council Transfer Stations. Business waste page.
The GOV.UK website offers advice on employing staff for the first time.
Tax and National Insurance
The HMRC online learning course for people starting their own business can help with questions about tax, National Insurance, business records and expenses.
Other help and ideas
The Invest in Bristol and Bath team provides a 'red carpet' reception service for companies wishing to develop or locate in Bristol.