The City of Hull has been named the most Enterprising Place in Britain by the Enterprising Britain Awards in recognition of their successful four year programme helping local businesses to start-up and grow.
The Enterprising Britain Awards are part of the Government's drive to support entrepreneurial activity in the UK. Managed by Investment in Young People on behalf of the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS), the awards celebrate the work of public sector and government-backed organisations that support and encourage entrepreneurialism across the UK.
The awards, which are now in their fourteenth year, are given in four categories. This year's other winners include North Tyneside Council in the "Start-Up Spirit" category, Business West for "Support for Exporting" and Hatch Enterprise Incubator for "Building Enterprise Skills." In addition to being named Most Enterprising Place in the UK, a title previously held by Birmingham, Hull was also awarded the prize for "Improving the Business Environment."
Judges were impressed by Hull City's wide-ranging approach to incentivising and supporting entrepreneurs and businesses.
The City Plan for Hull programme ranged from supporting innovative pilot projects to driving multi-million pound investments into the city from partners across the private, public, voluntary and community sectors. Notable successful projects include the £25.7m Greenport Growth Programme, supported by the Government's Regional Growth Fund, to help local start-ups capitalise on renewables opportunities and develop local business growth within the sector. Since 2013, the City Plan for Hull has resulted in 6,800 more people in employment compared to 2011, with a focus on securing jobs for economically excluded groups.
Small Business Minister Margot James said:
"The Enterprising Britain Awards are a fantastic reminder of what can be achieved when we bring together local knowledge and leadership to provide targeted support to entrepreneurs and the innovative businesses they build.
"I want to congratulate Hull on being named the most enterprising place in the UK. Small businesses are vital to our economy, and Hull is a great example of how the right support can have a huge effect on helping them to start and grow."
Councillor Martin Mancey, Portfolio Holder for Economic Investment, Regeneration and Planning, said:
"I am absolutely delighted that Hull has been recognised as the most enterprising place in Britain - over the last five years the Council and its many partners in the business world, local community and the government have worked to increase the City's profile which in turn has seen us secure major investment in the City. This backdrop of investment has enabled us to work with significant numbers of new entrepreneurs to establish and grow their businesses.
"Coming in the same year as the City being the City of Culture this recognition will be another step forward for the City in creating the right environment to support our business community to develop and grow who in turn are creating quality opportunities for our communities."
All the Enterprising Britain winners will be awarded at an event with the Small Business Minister in London in November.