Grants available in Dorset

Funding to help your business take a step forward

Small Growth Grants

Dorset Growth Hub are launching Small Growth Grants for Dorset businesses with ambitions to grow.

Applicants will need to demonstrate that they have traded successfully for at least 12 months and now have plans for a project that will facilitate business  growth. The Small Growth Grants scheme is inviting applications for projects of a value from £4,000 upwards and successful grant applications are provided 25% of eligible project costs.

The minimum grant amount is £1,000 and maximum is £5,000. For example, to receive a grant of £5,000 the total project cost will be at least £20,000. Eligible project costs include capital equipment, new premises works and fitting, new digital capability adoption, and outsourcing of expertise.

This is a competitive application process and the guidelines and application are provided below.

The Small Growth Grant is currently open for a short period with completed applications to be submitted no later than Friday 31st January 2020, and the latest date for any resulting grant claims to be Friday 28th February 2020.

We are hopeful that this grant programme will be continued in 2020 and hence if your current project plans fall outside the current timescales, feel free to register your interest by calling our grant administration team on 01202 607533.

Small Growth Grant Guidance - Download PDF

Small Growth Grant Application Form


***Applications for other Dorset Growth Hub Grants are now closed for 2019. Please note, all agreed grants will need to be redeemed by submitting all required paperwork by 28th February 2020 ***


Other Grants Available to Dorset Businesses:

AUB Equipment Access Voucher

Prototype and test new products with free access to Arts University Bournemouth’s world-class facilities including SLS 3D printing, CNC routing, 3 and 5 axis CNC milling, digital textile printers, spray rooms and vac formers. Also, access support from staff and students for solutions to design problems.

Application Form: AUB-ERDF Access Voucher

Equipment Capabilities List

AUB Research and Innovation Grants

A grant of up to £5,000 (match funded 1:1) to help your business develop new products or services. From prototyping to minimum viable product you can claim back up to £5,000 of your development costs for consultancy and equipment.

Eligibility Form 


Application Form 

For more information and to submit your application for the Equipment Access Voucher and/or Research and Innovation Grant, please send to


RDPE Growth Programme

Just like LEADER these grants come from the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD).  They are aimed at increasing productivity and creating jobs in businesses and communities in the countryside. The fund is managed by the Rural Payments Agency

Who are the grants for?

  • Rural businesses
  • Food & drink producers
  • Rural tourism providers - commercial and community based.
  • Farm businesses wishing to diversify 

The window for expressions of interest opens Monday 4 November to midnight Sunday 16 February 2020. The grants are for projects with a minimum cost of £50,000 with a typical grant rate of 40%. Projects should expect to finish in September 2021. 

For more information -

Dorset Leader are running a workshop to support prospective RDPE grant applicants on January 12 2020 in Dorchester. Details and booking instructions here