Community Business Bright Ideas Fund reopens on 26 February 2020

10 February 2020

Community groups in England looking to set up and start running a new community business can apply to the Bright Ideas Fund. The organisation must have been trading for less than five years to be eligible for this fund.

"Groups accepted onto the programme will receive tailored business development support, mentoring and visits and can apply for a small grant of up to £15,000 to fund development and start-up costs."

What is a community business?

Applicants need to meet Power to Change's definition of a community business.

"The four key features of a community business are:

  • "Locally rooted: They are rooted in a particular geographical place and respond to its needs. For example, that could be high levels of urban deprivation or rural isolation.
  • Trading for the benefit of the local community: They are businesses. Their income comes from things like renting out space in their buildings, trading as cafes, selling produce they grow or generating energy.
  • Accountable to the local community: They are accountable to local people, for example through a community shares offer that creates members who have a voice in the business’s direction.
  • Broad community impact: They benefit and impact their local community as a whole. They often morph into the hub of a neighbourhood, where all types of local groups gather, for example to access broadband or get training in vital life skills."


Application forms are not available until the fund opens on 26 February. In the meantime, read the guidance notes and sign up for the webinar on 3 March 2020 to find out more about the fund and application process.

The deadline for applications will be 7 April 2020 (midnight).

More opportunities to apply

There will be additional Bright Ideas funding rounds in:

  • August to September 2020
  • February to March 2021


Answers to frequently asked questions are available or email

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