Rushcliffe Borough Council issued the Shop Front Improvement Grant to businesses, offering them up to £5,000 to match contributions to improvements, West Bridgford Wire reported.

Porfolio holder for business and transformation Councillor Andy Edyvean said: “It is brilliant to see another Rushcliffe business that has benefitted from this scheme.”

He went on to say: “The grants can assist with renovation, re-design or general improvement costs that can really regenerate shop fronts and enhance experiences for customers.”

Among the establishments that have benefitted from the initiative is Instep Podiatry in West Bridgford, which fitted a new sign outside the premises.

Hair salon Cut N Curl in East Leake was also able to install double-glazing and a new door, while Ash Accounting on Bingham’s Fairfield Street replaced their damaged shop front with a new render. 

Director of the accounting firm Helen Wells told the news provider the finance has “made such a difference to the appearance of our building”.

“Having recently renovated the interior of our premises this funding also enabled us to transform the exterior and make some repairs to the brickwork as well,” she stated, adding: “Our business now has much more of an attractive and professional look and we’ve already had some compliments from passers-by.”

Other local firms have been encouraged to apply for the grant, which could really make a difference to the success of their enterprise. 

Indeed, as Ms Wells suggests, having better kerb appeal by improving the exterior of the building could have a positive impact on the business itself, as more people are likely to enter to take a look at the products or services on offer.

This initiative could also take place in Stalybridge, as Tameside Council has revealed it will match fund the application to Historic England’s High Street Heritage Action Zone project. If the local authority is given the maximum funding of £1.27 million, this means as much as £2.54 million could be ploughed into Stalybridge’s town centre.

This is expected to go towards shop front grants, town centre events, community engagement initiatives, support for businesses, a river walkway, new cycling routes, a cleaner environment, and cultural and arts activities, About Manchester reported.

Councillor Oliver Ryan, executive member for finance and economic growth at Tameside Council, said: “Stalybridge has so much to offer … It’s steeped in history, has a unique riverside location, excellent transport links, and is ideally placed for access to Manchester city centre and the countryside.”

He went on to say the local authority is considering a number of ideas with regards to how to use the finance, all of which will benefit the town centre and its high streets.

“I’m very excited about the town’s future and I’m sure the residents will be too when our plans are finalised,” Mr Ryan stated.