NORTHUMBERLAND County Council’s Small Business Scheme, which claims to promote business and help create employment, has come under fire in Alnwick.
The assessment panel, which decides where the money should go, to allow small businesses to take on extra staff or buy new equipment, has been described as inconsistent and inefficient.
Russell Studiocraft Ltd, in Greenwell Road, recently applied for a £2,000 grant in order to create a new full-time job for a young typesetter.
After apparently satisying all the criteria, Mrs Pat Russell was confident that a grant would be made to her company. However, she was turned down.
On making enquiries she was told that the reasons for refusal could not be given.
However, enquiries by her County Councillor Anthony Castle revealed that part of the information which had gone before the panel was that Studiocraft’s profits were £40,000 – when in fact that is their turnover.
Mrs Russell said: “This is the first time we have got involved with this scheme and will probably be the last.”