Cafe Vita and Hunts Bookshop are the latest two businesses to open up shop in Rugby town centre.
Both businesses received grants from the Retail Start-Up Scheme, funded by Rugby Borough Council and Rugby First.
The scheme, designed to attract new businesses to the town centre, has already proved popular with start-up businesses and has been awarded the Federation of Small Business Award for best small business friendly programme or campaign, in recognition of its value to the town centre economy.
The grant is available to new start-up businesses for specific units and areas of the town centre.
Since its introduction several businesses have taken advantage of the grant which has proved to be extremely effective in attracting new businesses to the town centre and reducing the number of vacant units.
Other recipients of the grant include Supatone and Tanning, Shadow Games, London Calling, Ripride and The Play Café.
Cllr Heather Timms, Rugby Borough Council portfolio holder for economy, development and culture, said: “The scheme can make a real difference to new businesses in their crucial first few months of trading and we are delighted with the uptake and interest it has had and continues to generate.”
Aftab Gaffar, Managing Director of Rugby First, said: “The grant and proactive approach taken by Rugby First and Rugby Borough Council has really helped keep vacancy levels low and continues to attract new businesses, ensuring we have a busy, colourful and vibrant town centre.”
Mahmood Miandihi, owner of Café Vita, a specialist coffee shop on High Street, said: “I was one of the first businesses to apply for the grant and there is no doubt it played a part in my decision to locate in Rugby rather than elsewhere. It’s taken a while to get the business open but I have been really pleased by the support and encouragement Rugby First has provided throughout this whole process.”
Kelvin Hunt, owner of Hunt’s Bookshop, situated on High Street, said: “The grant will really help me during the first few months of trading which are always difficult for new businesses. I commend Rugby First and Rugby Borough Council on their foresight in the development and promotion of this award winning scheme.”
Hunts Bookshop is a long running Rugby business which started in the High Street before moving to Chapel Street. From there it moved into the basement of the Summersault deli and takeaway before reopening in the High Street again.
For further information on the ‘Retail Start-Up Scheme’ or opening a business in Rugby town centre please call Aftab on 01788 569436.