Beer and chocolate help Derbyshire Dales firms expand

Robert Evans of Peak Ales
Robert Evans of Peak Ales
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A microbrewery near Chatsworth and a posh chocolate manufacturer in Bakewell are expanding into new premises thanks to funding from Sheffield City Region LEP and free business advice from Derbyshire Dales District Council.

Peak Ales and Holdsworth Chocolates are celebrating after sharing more than £100,000 funding – and both have benefited from free guidance from the council’s business advice service to help them with expansion plans and grant applications.

Peak Ales supplies cask and bottled ales to pubs, hotels and retail outlets. With demand now exceeding production capacity at the company’s existing premises near Pilsley, the firm is set to invest in additional premises, plant and equipment at Ashford in the Water.

Peak Ales’ growth plans will create up to five jobs and the funding will be used to invest in a 20-barrel brewing facility.

Robert Evans of Peak Ales praised Heather Bradford of Derbyshire Dales Business Advice.

He said: “She was my business adviser when I made a successful application to DEFRA to help set up of the brewery and her support, pragmatism and positivity have contributed greatly to our further development.

“The brewery is now approaching another significant phase in its development and it is only with Heather’s guidance that I was able to meet the funding application deadline. She appreciates small businesses often need financial help to grow and does everything she can to ensure that they have access to funding.”

Heather Bradford said: “It is a pleasure to help small businesses that are often put off by the application process for grants. While these people are experts in their own field, they sometimes need help with the paperwork involved in putting together a bid.

“This funding is great news for two local businesses that have worked tremendously hard to expand. Both businesses should be congratulated on successful applications.”

Coun Lewis Rose OBE, leader of Derbyshire Dales District Council said: “Small businesses are the lifeblood of the Derbyshire Dales and it is important they have support and access to funding streams that meet their requirements.”