Further funding announced to support Retail Support Scheme in Banchory, Huntly and Stonehaven

Businesses in Banchory, Huntly and Stonehaven are being offered an exciting opportunity to work with leading retail experts thanks to a commission from the South Aberdeenshire Local Action Group (SALAG). 

It has awarded a LEADER grant to fund one-to-one retail consultancy for the three towns. 

Local businesses signed up to the scheme following its launch in January where they met Gordon Bell from retail management consultants The Retailer for an introduction to the scheme. 

To complement the support, £22,500 has been approved by Aberdeenshire Council’s Infrastructure Services Committee for the allocation of a match-funded grant which will be available for each participating business. 

The project will be split into two parts and will run until September 2020.  

The first, delivered by The Retailer, gives each business access to specialist expertise and confidential advice tailored to its individual needs, to help maintain long-term sustainability. 

The second complements the expert advice by offering an improvement and enhancement scheme, aimed at encouraging and supporting private investment in within the town centre premises of Banchory, Huntly and Stonehaven. 

Up to £500 grant funding will now be available from Aberdeenshire Council, to be matched with 50% funding from applicants, to help implement the advice received. 

Chair of Aberdeenshire Council’s Infrastructure Service Committee, Cllr Peter Argyle, said: “These are challenging conditions for all retailers, so assistance at this time is particularly valuable. Aberdeenshire Council is delighted to support this very positive scheme which offers expert advice and grant funding to businesses to invest in their business.” 

Vice-chair Cllr John Cox added: "This is tremendous news for our town centre businesses who will benefit greatly from the professional advice provided by The Retailer Group. I would strongly encourage all businesses to sign up for this support scheme which will help them grow and develop in their respective marketplace.”

Managing director of The Retailer Group, Gordon Bell, said: "It is great to have the Retail Support Scheme up and running in the three towns, with the initial meetings receiving such a positive response. There are still spaces available and all retailers in each town who have yet signed up to the scheme are urged to do so.” 

Any retailer looking for further information should contact Heather Macrae for further details on 01467533297 or at heather.macrae@aberdeenshire.gov.uk