Help your business fly at Cosford event 

February 16, 2023

Experts in business finance will be joining forces at a special event to help firms access vital funding to help them grow. 

The British Business Bank and the Marches Local Enterprise Partnership will host the free event at RAF Cosford on March 24, from 9.30-12.00.   

Those attending will be able to find out about the many sources of finance available through the LEP and its business support arm the Marches Growth Hub, as well as funding from the Midlands Engine Investment Fund (MEIF). 

Rachel Laver, chief executive of the Marches LEP, said: “I would urge all small and medium sized businesses in Herefordshire, Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin to put the date in their diaries now. As well as speakers from the British Business Bank and the LEP, there will be a question and answer session and a chance to meet other local businesses over a coffee. 

“The Marches LEP and Marches Growth Hub are the home of business support in the region, and this event is part of an ongoing campaign to make sure businesses know about and can access all the help they need. In these difficult economic times, it’s important that businesses know there is help out there.” 

The event will be hosted by Tracy Sherratt, UK network manager for the West Midlands at British Business Bank. She will be joined by Rachel and MEIF fund managers Naomi Campion, business development manager for BCRS, Ryan Cartwright, investment manager at the FSE Group, and Huw Sparkes, investment manager at Midven. 

The British Business Bank is owned by but independent of the government. It aims to drive sustainable growth and prosperity across the UK, and to help smaller businesses to become net zero by helping them to access finance. 

The event at Cosford is part of the LEP’s ongoing Finance Your Business campaign, which highlights how the LEP can help small and medium-sized businesses. 

There are more than 70 funding programmes available through the Marches Growth Hub, which has helped 4,150 businesses in the first half of 2022/23 alone. 

Rachel said: “The LEP and the growth hub should be the first port of call for anyone needing support for their business. We have experts who can find the best scheme for you as well as guide you through the application process.  “I look forward to seeing as many people as possible at Cosford to help spread the word even wider.” 

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The Marches Local Enterprise Partnership has now ceased trading and transferred all its functions to Shropshire Council working with Telford & Wrekin Council and Herefordshire Council, in line with the UK Government's plans for devolution.

The Marches LEP was established in 2011 and hands over an impressive legacy from its 13-year life. In that time the LEP invested over £196m in projects across the Marches, securing in excess of £100m of match funding and supported more than 66,000 business interactions.

The schemes supported have made tangible differences to local communities, increasing skills, creating jobs and improving the physical appearance of many towns.

We would like to thank all the LEP Board Members who have given their time freely over the life of the LEP, as well as all the staff who worked for the LEP over the years. We also want to thank our delivery partners, local education providers and local, regional and national stakeholders who helped us achieve so much.

The Marches Growth Hub will continue to support businesses and will be managed by Shropshire Council, supported by Telford and Wrekin and Herefordshire Councils. Each of the three Local Authorities will also continue to provide direct business support locally. Details of this support will be available through the Marches Growth Hub website and from the Local Authorities directly. Website: | email:

The Marches Careers Hub will continue to be delivered and will be managed by Shropshire Council, supported by Telford & Wrekin and Herefordshire Councils. Website: | email:

For any queries about Getting Building Fund (GBF), Local Growth Fund (LGF) and Marches Investment Fund (MIF) projects supported by the Marches LEP please contact:

For any finance queries please contact:

The solvent liquidation of the Marches LEP is being managed by the Evelyn Partners Limited. For any matter related to this please contact:

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