Council pledges support for local businesses

SMALL-SCALE businesses have been given a welcome boost as a council reveals plans to support local firms.

Durham County Council has launched Buy Local Buy Durham, which aims to create more opportunities for local suppliers.

It ensures that Durham County Council gets a minimum of one quotation from companies based in County Durham when they buy goods or services between £5,001 and £50,000.

Hazel Armstrong, a spokesman for the Federation of Small Businesses North-East, said: “We are delighted that the biggest council in the North-East is supporting small and micro businesses in Durham to win more council contracts through Buy Local, Buy Durham.”

Councillor Neil Foster, the council’s cabinet member for regeneration and economic development, said: “Buy Local Buy Durham is a fantastic opportunity for the county council to support and build relationships with local businesses.”

To encourage small firms, the council is also holding half-day workshops to explain how they can bid to win contracts.

The first is called Preparing to Bid and will be held at Durham County Hall on Wednesday, July 6, from 3.30pm-6.30pm,.

Others are planned at the same venue from 3.30pm-6.30pm on Monday, July 11, and Tuesday, July 19.

The fourth will run from 1.30pm-5pm, at County Hall, on Friday, July 22.

For more information or to book a place at a workshop, contact Jamie Thomas at Durham County Council on (0191) 3835715 or e-mail