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... the business centre that inspires



Hello <<First Name>>

In this edition ...
  • Happy New Year!
  • 50% off new meeting room bookings
  • Travel bug inspires new small business
  • Making business awards part of your marketing plan workshop - 16 Jan
  • Ways to save $s on your energy bills
  • Donut Time travels to Micro Business Show
  • FSB Celebrating Small Biz Awards application deadline - 17 Jan
  • New Digital Town Centres programme
  • From farming to funerals and a modern round barrow
  • "Back Her Business" - Women's start-up programme
  • January/February events at Venture House
  • Local events and networking
Thank you to all of you who have worked with us during the last year and
we wish you a very happy and prosperous 2020!
We look forward to supporting you and your business in the year to come.

50% off new meeting room bookings

We are offering a fantastic 50% discount to all new clients on your first meeting room booking at Venture House.

Our light and airy meeting space seats up to 30 and is well placed for training, meetings, seminars, presentations, interviews and one-to-ones. Fully accessible with free parking and wifi, there is also excellent presentation equipment, an informal breakout area, refreshments and a friendly team waiting to greet you and your delegates.

So if you haven't seen our facilities yet, pop in or give us a quick ring to arrange a viewing.

Further offer details here.

Travel bug inspires new small business

Local business woman Donna Nixon founded her travel business 52 Degrees North after deciding to turn her love of travel into a business and help others get more out of their holidays.  

Being Stratford born and bred, Donna wanted to reflect her love of the town in her business and so used Stratford's line of latitude as the business name, 52 Degrees North.

Find out more about Donna's exploration into the world of self-employment and how her business benefited from the support of the CW Chamber of Commerce and Venture House.

Read Donna's story.

New workshop: Making business awards part of your marketing plan

Thursday 16 January 2020, 9.30am - 12.30pm

Business awards can provide an extra and exciting dimension to any business' advertising and marketing campaign.  For 2020, why not make a resolution to enter at least one awards scheme this year!

We will be holding a free morning workshop on Thursday 16 January to teach you why and how to nominate yourself and your business for award schemes, and how to take advantage of the opportunities that come with this.

Find out more and book your free place.

Ways to save £s on your business' energy bills

Do you run a business premises such as an office, shop, workshop, warehouse or factory? If so, there's a good chance you could save money on your energy bills and cut your carbon emissions at the same time! 

To get some low-cost energy-saving top tips, find out how you can receive a free energy-saving audit and possibly a grant to help make your business more energy efficient, read our feature written by James Bridges, Sustainability Consultant at Coventry City Council.

Donut Time to travel to the
Micro Business Show

We are delighted to be hosting a micro Donut Time session at this year's Micro Business Show, to be held on Tuesday 25 February 2020 at the Draycote Hotel, Rugby.

Created especially for business people from the freelance, self employed and micro business community, this is to be the third Micro Business Show, having already successfully run in 2018 and 2019.

To provide attendees with a Donut Time taster, we shall be running a half hour networking session at the event. To take advantage of this and the rest of the show (including other networking tasters, the four knowledge-based seminars and business exhibition) book your FREE place now.

FSB Celebrating Small Business Awards 2020

There are just over two weeks left for small businesses to enter the FSB ‘Celebrating Small Business Awards 2020’. All small businesses and the self-employed in the West Midlands are being urged to enter before the closing date of 17 January 2020.

It is free to enter and is open to FSB members and non-members alike. We'd absolutely love to see more local businesses represented in this prestigious award scheme, so go on ... we dare you!

There are also still sponsorship opportunities available for the awards so please contact Lee Osborne for more details on this.

To find out more go to

New Digital Town Centres programme

Independent high street retailers across Warwickshire will be given top tips on how to attract more customers when a new support programme starts in the New Year.

The Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce will be delivering the support on behalf of Warwickshire County Council to help drive footfall to independent shops across the county through the Warwickshire Towns Network Programme.

Through a series of workshops, business owners will be given advice on how to use social media to tell their stories, how to create more of a shopping experience to counter the functionality of online retail and how to build better networks in their local area.  The workshops will be delivered by Stories Marketing,experts in retail and social media. 

For more information go to or contact Coventry & Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce on 02476 654321 (Option 3). 

From farming to funerals and a modern round barrow

It's one thing recognising that, as a Warwickshire farmer, you need to diversify your farm to secure its viability for future generations.  But it's totally another taking on a project that is as unusual as this.

Nestled in the corner of a field on the borders of Warwickshire, Oxfordshire and Northamptonshire, a large mound has appeared! Farmers, Richard and Sarah, have had a fascinating journey in creating this modern round barrow on their farmland. To find out more about their experiences and how their project was supported by a huge grant from the RDPE Growth Programme, read our recent blog.

"Back Her Business" - Your business idea. Natwest backing.

NatWest Bank want "Back Her Business" to be the UK’s most exciting and accessible business start-up programme for women EVER.

They want to help you to turn your idea into a side-hustle and your side-hustle into your main-hustle. It’s time to close the gender gap in business, for good.

Not only do they have money for some of you (which always helps), they also have mentoring, workshops, crowdfunding coaching and events in your community.

So don’t let your potential pass you by. Take the first step here. 
For details of all events below go to:
  • 8 Jan: Donut Time Networking
  • 13 Jan: 6 Steps to Great Business Results Seminar
  • 16 Jan: Marking Business Awards Part of your Marketing Plan Workshop
  • 21 Jan: Venture Co-working Club
  • 22 Jan: BusinessCLUB
  • 6 Feb: Venture Co-working Club
  • 12 Feb: Donut Time Networking
  • 18 Feb: Venture Co-working Club
  • 21 Feb: Digital Advertising for Small Business Workshop
  • 26 Feb: BusinessCLUB

Let us know about any forthcoming events you would like us to include in future updates.


Local Events

Weekly Tax Clinic & Business Networking - Wed 7 January, College Arms, Lower Quinton
SketchUp for Architectural Design and Construction - Tues 7/Wed 8 January, Coventry University
Motivation to Publication: Writing Workshop for Creatives - Sat 11 January, Methodist Church, Stratford
Start-up Essentials: How to survive a Start-up! - Thur 16 January, Serious Games Institute, Coventry
Sustainability and Strategic Business Management Workshop - Thur 16/Fri17 January, Coventry University
Just about You: Self Development Day - Mon 20 January, St Michael's Centre, Budbrooke
Copyrighting Course: Writing Powerful Content - Fri 23 January, Squab Hall, Leamington Spa
Driving Footfall to Town Centre Retailers Workshop 1 - Tues 28 January, Arden Hotel, Stratford
Women Into Construction Home Builders West Midlands Information Event - Tues 28 January, Perry Barr, Birmingham
Don't Stand Alone Club - Wed 29 January, Star & Garter, Leamington Spa
Driving Footfall to Town Centre Retailers Workshop 2 - Tues 4 February, Arden Hotel, Stratford

New Business Start-up Workshops - an ongoing programme of events across Coventry and Warwickshire

Local Networking

If you're a keen networker or are new to networking, you might like to take a look at our list of local networking groups. If you run a networking event that is not included in the list, please tell us about it and we can add your group to our list.

Please share this newsletter with anyone you know who runs their own business or is thinking about doing so, who organises training and events or who works from home.

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About Venture House...

Venture House is a fresh and friendly business centre dedicated to supporting businesses, organisations, entrepreneurs and homeworkers. The Centre provides flexible and affordable office, desk and meeting space, as well as a full programme of workshops, networking events and advice to start and grow your business.

For more info call 01789 207500

Venture House is owned and managed by Stratford-on-Avon District Council and forms part of the Council's business strategy.  Subscribe to SDC's Business Matters e-newsletter.

Our mailing address is:
Venture House Business Centre,
Avenue Farm Industrial Estate, Birmingham Road,
Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire  CV37 0HR

Venture House is supported by:

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