Welcome to the latest edition of the SVBS newsletter.

There are plenty of important updates this week. We're focusing on the newly-opened Oxfordshire Business and IP Centre, the Central Abingdon Regeneration Framework (CARF) online consultation, our ShopAppy online marketplace for South and Vale businesses, South and Vale's Joint Local Plan, and a free People First challenge for businesses.

We're also highlighting our next Networking In... session, where we'll be welcoming Graeme Beever of Innovate UK Edge South East. Plus, get involved in National Manufacturing Day 2022!

There are lots more opportunities, events and resources to get stuck into this week, but as always, if you'd like to suggest content for the SVBS newsletter, please get in touch with us.

- Team SVBS
Oxfordshire County Council and The British Library have teamed up to offer free advice and support for small business owners, entrepreneurs and inventors.

The Business and IP Centre, located inside the County Library in the Westgate Centre, offers access to over £5m worth of free business resources, training and events – both online and in-person. Whether you’re just starting a business, need advice on protecting your intellectual property, or simply have an idea you want to discuss, the team will be able to guide you.
How can the Centre help you?
  • Learn the skills you need to start and grow your business
  • Get to know your customers and research your market
  • Protect your ideas and make money from them
  • Gain confidence and inspiration and meet fellow entrepreneurs
  • Get expert advice

What can you do in the Centre?

  • Workshops and networking events
  • One-to-one expert advice 
  • Access a variety of databases and market research
  • Use co-working desks, meeting room space and training rooms
  • Access digital marketing equipment
We recommend...

The Centre has access to a number of market research databases. We recommend looking at the following:
  • COBRA - access key information and guides to setting up in any industry, with a focus on trading legally (including any licenses you may need)
  • GrantFinder - search for available funding opportunities for your business
  • Mintel - gauge the market opportunities
Vale of White Horse District Council is currently working on a regeneration review for central Abingdon, called the Central Abingdon Regeneration Framework (CARF). The project will include a review of the town centre to identify realistic options for improving buildings, spaces and movement to help make central Abingdon a thriving place in the future. 
The Council would like to hear from you to inform the work on the CARF project. A four-week online consultation event is now live, and will close for responses at 11.59pm on
Friday 15 July 2022.
Current proposals can be viewed on Vale of White Horse District Council's consultation webpage. In-person materials will also be displayed throughout the consultation period in the windows of Unit 24, Bury Street (the former H Samuel shop) in Abingdon.
How to take part

The quickest and easiest way to comment is via the online survey.

Comments can also be made by:

Emailing: carf@whitehorsedc.gov.uk

Writing to us: CARF project team, Vale of White Horse District Councils and post to ‘Freepost SOUTH AND VALE CONSULTATIONS’ (no other address information or stamp is needed)

If you would like to receive updates on the CARF project, please complete this opt-in form.
Register for our free online marketplace for South and Vale businesses

We’ve partnered with ShopAppy to pilot an online marketplace for independent High Street businesses located in South and Vale.

The platform will be free for the area’s businesses to access over the first 12 months of the scheme (excluding bank / card charges). Businesses will need to allocate just 20 minutes a week to managing their profile.

If you're interested in our new online marketplace, you can find further information and how to register on our website.
Joint Local Plan - have your say

South and Vale District Councils have come together to work on a new Joint Local Plan. The Joint Local Plan will guide the kinds of new housing and jobs needed and where they should go, informing planning application decisions for the districts.

We want to hear your thoughts on the main issues facing our districts and how we could use the Joint Local Plan to address them.  As the plan has an impact on jobs, housing and planning decisions, we want to ensure as many businesses as possible take part in the consultation so that a broad range of local business views can be represented as the plan is developed.

You can comment on the consultation until 11.59pm on Thursday 23 June 2022.

Find out more below:

South Oxfordshire businesses - click here

Vale of White Horse businesses - click here
Take part in the free People First challenge

The Highlight People team are on a mission to help businesses get the best from their people and to help, they're running a free challenge. If you run a business, or are responsible for people, this challenge is for you. 

Starting on 4 July, each day will include a 30 minute virtual activity to get you to assess your own business against a key People topic. You can complete each activity at a time of your choosing on each day and the team will be online throughout to encourage you, answer your questions and share their expertise. 

On the Friday, there will be a virtual call to pull everything together and give out prizes for those that best complete the activities. By the end of the Challenge, you will have a clearer sense of how you are doing against the 'People First Framework' and will have outlined a simple 'People Plan' to move forward. 

Find out how to register on the Highlight People website.
'Epic Service: 3 ways to create RAVING FANS of your customers'

Join us for our next Networking in... South & Vale event as we welcome Graeme Beever of Innovate UK Edge South East to outline three ways in which you can create raving fans of your customers.

Wednesday 6 July   |   09:30 - 11:00

Innovate UK Edge empowers innovative small to medium sized business to grow at pace and achieve their industry- and society-transforming ambitions.

The first 40 businesses to register for this event can claim a half-price ticket for just £5, using the code 'SVBS'.

Register for the event here on the official Networking in... event page.

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South Oxfordshire District Council   | 
Vale of White Horse District Council