Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

It Wrks for Gary; Entrepreneur a Picture of Entrust Success

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

It Wrks for Gary; Entrepreneur a Picture of Entrust Success

Article excerpt

BLACKHALL COLLIERY man Gary Coulthard is one of nearly 600 regional entrepreneurs who have realised their dreams of starting their own business, thanks to Government-backed business support agency Entrust.

A survey has confirmed that a funding and assistance programme managed in the North-east by leading agency Entrust has had a dramatic impact in encouraging new start-ups in some of the region's most deprived areas.

Since 2001, just over 900 people in the region have gone through the New Entrepreneurial Scholarship (NES) Programme, with 572 starting their own business (62%).

Mr Coulthard is a classic NES success story. After 30 years in the engineering sector Gary took voluntary redundancy and joined the NES programme at the Chester-le-Street and City of Durham Enterprise Agency in July. The knowledge he gained has helped him realise his dream with the launch of his photography and IT business, Imagewrks.

He said: "The NES programme has brought all the skills I needed together into one package. I always enjoyed photography and wanted to set up my own company but knew nothing about marketing or VAT. Thanks to the course I now have a successful business."

Across the UK as a whole, NES has assisted 5,500 people living in the 25% most deprived areas in England to overcome the obstacles to starting their own business by providing a comprehensive package of funding, training, support and mentoring.

Funded by the Learning and Skills Council, the programme is based on the specific needs of scholars, works closely with universities and draws on the specialist skills of business support organisations.

The pounds 6m programme has six years experience in assisting people from the most deprived areas of the UK to set up successful and sustainable businesses and the results of the evaluation highlight how much of a positive impact the programme has had. …

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