Items of Interest

This week’s Items of Interest:

1.       From today, Monday 21 October to Sunday 3 November (10am-5pm) at the Architecture Centre, 16 Narrow Quay BS1 4QA you can learn more about the latest developments relating to the Bristol Housing Festival; more here.


2.       The last in the current series of free-to-attend Lloyds Digital Academy training courses for small businesses is Reach More People with Digital Marketing on Friday 25 October (9.30am-11am) at Lloyds Harbourside, BS1 5LL; for further details click here.


3.       If you have a retail premises you may be eligible for a business rate discount. From April 2019 to April 2021 certain retail premises can have a business rates discount. The discount will be provided to eligible occupied retail properties with a rateable value of less than £51,000 in 2019/20 and 2020/21; further details here.


4.       Fair Saturday, a celebration of culture and social causes in 180 cities around the world, returns on Saturday 30 November, and Bristol is taking part once again. Falling the day after Black Friday, Fair Saturday serves as an antidote to pre-Christmas sales pushes from large corporations by championing local causes instead. This can involve anything from community choirs and theatre companies to market stalls and social enterprises. And there’s still time to register events, with the deadline for doing so Monday 28 October; find out more here or email BCC’s Arts & Events Team at


5.       Brexit: Chat to an adviser from Business West on 01275 370900, and find out more about the range of support available from Business West’s Trading Through Brexit here; take a look at the FSB’s Brexit Hub here; and an SME Finance Charter has been produced by UK banks and finance providers listing five pledges to support their SME customers through Brexit; more here.

6.       Do you have a great high tech business idea but don’t know where to start; or are you unsure what to do next in order to grow your tech company? Then sign up for #Idea2Pitch on Tuesday 5 November (1pm-5pm) at KWMC, Leinster Avenue BS4 1NL. The event is hosted by SETsquared Bristol, and designed to help hone your ideas, and shape them into a pitch for gaining interest or support in your venture. It’s just one of a number of events forming part of the Bristol Technology Festival 2019 taking place between Monday 4 and Sunday 10 November at venues across the city; full details here.


7.       Sixteen Bristol restaurants have made it into the AA’s Restaurant Guide 2020, according to this article, and this article notes local restaurants’ success in the Observer Food Monthly Awards.


8.       View a list of things to do this half-term, courtesy of Visit Bristol, here.


9.       Creative England, in partnership with Triodos Bank UK, has recently launched a £24m fund to provide vital scale up finance to the UK’s most promising creative businesses. The fund will provide business loans of up to £500k to creative firms showing potential for growth and scaling, in addition to revenue and intellectual property; more here.

10.   More than ever young people need support to make informed choices about the career which is right for them. Young Enterprise’s Learn to Earn Programme provides an opportunity for all young people to understand the full range of opportunities that are available, to learn from employers about work and the skills that are valued in the workplace. A Learn to Earn event takes place on Thursday 7 November (8.45am-3.30pm) at Bristol Cathedral Choir School, College Square BS1 5TS. Contact for further information.

11.   New research from Which? has found that many high streets are moving away from being carbon copies of one another. Instead, a model more familiar to older generations is re-emerging in some areas – with flourishing personal services, markets, and food specialists that focus on ‘experiences’ replacing retailers hit directly by the rise of online shopping; read more here.


12.   Bristol Libraries have launched a new fund to help community groups develop innovative ideas for their local library. The Library Innovation Fund will enable communities to lead on putting the ideas they have about their local library and the library building into action. Projects could range from buying furniture or equipment to funding activities such as creative writing workshops. It could also be used as match funding for a larger project; full details here.

And remember you can also follow us on Twitter at @ShopLocalBris