Help & advice

Help and advice for businesses

In this section of the website businesses can find a range of services that can help and advise them:

Specific information can be found on the following pages:


Hart for Business magazine

Economic Development and looking after businesses is at the heart of the Council’s promise to support and develop the local economy. Hart for Business aims to provide a succinct roundup of the things that matter to local businesses. Below you can view editions of our Hart for Business magazine, filled with help and advice, for your business.


Apprenticeships are work-based training programmes designed around the needs of employers, which lead to national recognised qualifications. You can use Apprenticeships to train both new and existing employees who are moving into a new or changed job role and need to learn new skills. Funding is available to train apprentices.

Types of Apprenticeships
There are more than 250 different types of Apprenticeships available offering over 1,400 job roles within a variety of industry sectors ranging from accountancy and engineering to veterinary nursing and floristry.

Employers who take on a 16-18 year old apprentice will only pay their salary. The Government will fund their training. The National Minimum Wage for apprentices is £2.65 per hour. Many employers prefer to pay more however, and research shows that the average salary is approx. £170 per week.

The amount of funding employers can get for apprenticeship training depends on their sector and the age of the candidate:

  • aged 16 to 18 - 100% of cost paid
  • aged 19 to 24 - 50% of cost paid
  • 25 years and older - employers may only get a contribution

This is paid directly to the organisation that provides and supports the apprenticeship - in most cases the learning provider.

Apprenticeship grant for employers
Employers may also be eligible for a £1,500 apprenticeship grant. These grants are available to help small-medium sized employers to recruit up to 10 apprentices for the first time, and are in addition to the training costs you get for apprentices.

 Information on  current employer incentives.

Search for a learning provider, by occupation type, job role or location. For further information, please visit the National Apprenticeship Service website.

Business mentoring

If you have a gap in your knowledge or experience, then mentoring could work very well for you. For example, you may have a great idea for a business but need a bit of guidance to turn it into a successful venture.

There are schemes available locally and nationally putting businesses in touch with mentors who can support their business growth.

Mentorsme is Britain’s first online gateway for small and medium-sized enterprises looking for mentoring services. The free site offers businesses access to a list of quality-assured business mentoring organisations across Britain. An easy-to-use search engine allows businesses to refine their searches according to the life stage of their business and their location in Britain.

This business mentoring scheme for Hampshire has been designed to support the owners’ of small and medium sized businesses to develop the skills and knowledge they need to help their businesses survive, grow and prosper. Volunteer Business Mentors are drawn from experienced members of the business community and the professions.

Trade waste

Hart District Council do not provide a trade waste collection service at present. This service is provided by private companies, who can collect trade refuse at competitive rates.

Exporting & trading internationally

Have you considered exporting your goods and services?

Although your business may have an established UK market, there's often no reason why it couldn't successfully compete overseas too, growing your revenue and profit.

Before you start, you need to have sound knowledge of your would-be markets. You also need to consider whether your products are right for each target market and whether you have the necessary resources to start exporting. Find out how to get started with the resources below.

UK Trade & Investment (UKTI)
UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) works with UK-based businesses to ensure their success in international markets, and encourage the best overseas companies to look to the UK as their global partner of choice. UKTI has professional advisers both within the UK and across more than 100 international markets and offer tailored overseas market intelligence; access to information, contacts, mentoring and support; access to buyers, governments, supply chains and opportunities; and financial support for overseas trade fairs

Enterprise Europe Network
EEN helps companies to improve, innovate and grow through partnership and expert advice. EEN offer a bridge to European opportunities, to save time, money and reduce risk, providing practical, hands-on support and information for South East businesses hoping to expand their business into Europe, wishing to develop technology partnerships or seeking funding and tender opportunities. Services include PartnerFinder, a free searchable database of 13,000+ European Business opportunities.

Working with businesses and the Regulators' Code

In delivering our statutory regulatory functions Hart District Council will act in accordance with the Regulators' Code and our own enforcement policies. All requests for advice and information will be responded to in accordance with our service standards.

The council is committed to supporting business and economic growth. Hart is committed to working with businesses to help them meet their statutory requirements and prosper.

Hart District Council will:

  • support and promote the local economy by supporting local business
  • encourage businesses to seek advice
  • explain the reason for their visit to businesses 
  • carry out regulatory activity in a fair, transparent, proportionate and consistent way
  • be accountable
  • minimise the cost of compliance for businesses by ensuring any action taken is proportionate to risk
  • co-ordinate services to minimise unnecessary overlaps and duplication
  • consult with businesses when developing policies, plans, procedures and service standards

Top tips to be a breastfeeding friendly business

There are some simple things you can do to help mothers feel comfortable breastfeeding when out and about:

  • Ensure that all your staff are aware of the rights of mums to breastfeed in public places
  • Ensure that all your staff are positive towards, and supportive of, breastfeeding mums

If you feel a mother would like it:

  • Stop for a brief chat to make it clear that mothers are welcome to breastfeed
  • Offer a chair, if one is available
  • Offer her a glass of water if you can
  • If another customer complains, explain why it is important to support breastfeeding mums and ask them to move to another area. Do not ask the mum and baby to move.
  • Provide a comfortable and clean environment including comfortable seating
  • Some venues may provide a room for mums to breastfeed in private (if they wish to). This may be a designated room or one available at the time. Not all premises have the space and resources to provide a separate room. If you do provide a room it should not be in a baby changing area or toilet.

For more information on to how to make your business breastfeeding friendly, please visit the Breastfeeding Network.

Comments, Compliments and Complaints

We aim to provide a high quality service. We therefore welcome feedback on our service, both positive and negative and continually seek feedback from business following our interventions. Please visit our feedback page or through the links to our satisfaction surveys provided on our letters to you following a complaint visit, inspection or other regulatory intervention. For informal feedback, send comments to the Head of Regulatory Services either via email

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