PNE Enterprise will be supporting the StartUp Britain bus, as it undertakes a mammoth tour of 30 towns and cities across the UK this summer. In Newcastle upon Tyne on June 27th, the PNE Enterprise team are offering free, impartial business advice to aspiring entrepreneurs from the famous bus, as part of a nationwide campaign to celebrate and promote entrepreneurship.

The national enterprise campaign StartUp Britain, run by the Centre for Entrepreneurs, is hitting the road again this summer to provide inspiration and support to thousands of aspiring entrepreneurs. Now in its fifth year the StartUp Britain bus tour, powered by NatWest, will visit a record 30 towns and cities in the space of six weeks. The StartUp Tour is part of an ongoing partnership between StartUp Britain and NatWest that takes a 1966 Routemaster bus across the country to promote entrepreneurship. Parking in busy town squares and offering free business support, the bus tour celebrates entrepreneurial communities across Britain, and inspires individuals to turn their business ideas into action.

Melissa Middleton, Programme Manager at PNE Enterprise, said, “The StartUp Britain bus has grown into an icon of the enterprise world in recent years. Myself and the team are very excited to be part of the project, and to support the North East region. We share the passion of the Centre for Entrepreneurs and Natwest for empowering entrepreneurship across the UK, and this is a fantastic opportunity to both celebrate and promote the cause.”

The StartUp Tour will promote locality this year, with energetic entrepreneurs recruited in each town to get on board and give advice. They will be joined by local ‘experts’ including accountants, lawyers and professional business advisers. Also on­ board will be representatives of national partners including the Intellectual Property Office, the National Enterprise Network and the British Library Business & IP Centre Network.

Centre for Entrepreneurs and StartUp Britain director, Matt Smith said: “Interest in entrepreneurship is higher than ever and the only thing holding many people back from trying out a business idea is some encouragement and support. By connecting aspiring entrepreneurs with those a few steps ahead of them, as well as supportive local organisations, we want to give people the confidence to turn their ideas into reality.”

Julie Baker, Head of Enterprise at NatWest, said: “Our mobile business bus is a great way to get into local communities and support aspiring business owners. By collaborating with StartUp Britain and local experts, we hope to provide a broader range of support to help more entrepreneurs realise their business ambitions than ever before.”

While visiting each location, the Centre for Entrepreneurs team will also be hosting roundtables on board with business and community leaders to discuss the health of the local entrepreneurship ecosystem and what more can be done to boost entrepreneurship locally.

The StartUp Tour is set to visit 30 locations across England, Wales and Scotland, starting in London on 13th June and returning on 29th July.

About StartUp Britain

StartUp Britain is a national campaign by entrepreneurs for entrepreneurs, harnessing the expertise and passion of Britain’s leading businesspeople to unleash entrepreneurship across the UK. The campaign is run by the Centre for Entrepreneurs think tank and powered by NatWest.

Founded by eight entrepreneurs and launched in 2011 by the Prime Minister, StartUp Britain is completely private sector funded. It was launched in response to the government’s call for an ‘enterprise led’ recovery.

Over the campaign’s duration, Startup Britain has pioneered a range of innovative initiatives to boost public awareness of entrepreneurship and support the growth of early­ stage entrepreneurs. Since the campaign launched, startup rates have increased from 440,600 in 2011 to a record­-breaking 608,110 in 2015.

Notable initiatives from StartUp Britain include four bus tours of Britain, engaging over 17,500 aspiring entrepreneurs in 60 towns and cities; popup shops; and PitchUp schemes through which entrepreneurs pitched their products to Britain’s largest high street stores.