New opportunity for Hartlepool business enthusiasts

Mark Rycraft.
Mark Rycraft.

Hartlepool’s shopping centre is on the lookout for up and coming business brains to capitalise on a new initiative.

Middleton Grange’s New Horizons scheme is offering a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for business-minded enthusiasts to set up on their own in its market hall.

Middleton Grange in Hartlepool.

Middleton Grange in Hartlepool.

Not only that, they will be able to run their business free for the first six months they are operational.

There are four stalls up for grabs and the competition is open to anyone looking for the chance get their business idea up and running.

“We want to get behind local entrepreneurial talent and provide them with a tangible opportunity to make their dreams and aspirations come true,” said Mark Rycraft, Middleton Grange Shopping Centre manager.

“Whether you’re a student keen to make your mark, a stay at home mum or dad who has that one amazing idea, or someone who wants to change their career and has the ambition to go it alone we want to hear from you.”

Those wanting to enter the centre’s New Horizons business campaign can do so via the Middleton Grange website where users can access an online questionnaire.

Applicants just need to answer five straight forward questions and submit the form to be in with a chance of being selected.

The deadline for submission is May 26 and entrants will go on to an informal interview process where they will have the opportunity to provide more detail of their business plan.

Once the four winners have been selected they will then go on to set their business up in the Market Hall operating for free for six months.

During that period, each business will have full access to ongoing support from the council’s Hartlepool Enterprise Centre including advice with their business plan, marketing and achieving their business goals.

Councillor Kevin Cranney, chairman of Hartlepool Borough Council’s Regeneration Services Committee, said: “We are delighted to team up with Middleton Grange Shopping Centre to give local people the opportunity to launch new businesses.

Coun Cranney added: “This is an excellent scheme that provides a package of incentives and support to help people to turn their business dream into reality.”

For those interested, further information on how to enter the New Horizons initiative is available at