Young tree surgeon nurtures his own business growth

Ellis Bancroft, 29, of  Edenthorpe, signed up to The Prince's Trust Enterprise programme after losing his job due to the recession.
Ellis Bancroft, 29, of Edenthorpe, signed up to The Prince's Trust Enterprise programme after losing his job due to the recession.
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A scheme helping jobless young people start up in business has created more than £870,000 in social value in Doncaster, according to a new analysis.

The Prince’s Trust Enterprise programme supported more than 100 unemployed young people across Doncaster in just one year, giving them the skills and confidence they need to start-up in business or find work.

One of them was 29-year-old tree surgeon Ellis Bancroft, from Edenthorpe, who just four days after his son was born was given the bad news that his employer, a local arboriculture company, was closing due to the recession.

Ellis was left trying to support his family without employment and soon began to feel depressed with his situation.

He found it hard to cope with so little money and the family were struggling to get by.

After nearly 18 months being unemployed, Ellis lost confidence that he would ever find something and things were so bad that they were considering a move to his partner’s parents.

“When I lost my job, I was crushed. It was something I loved doing and to lose that was awful. I tried so hard to find a job afterwards, as I had a young family to support but there were just no jobs out there in what I am trained in.”

With good qualifications and experience in arboriculture and landscaping, he had considered his own business but financially he was not in a position to act.

So, at a complete dead end, and seeking help, Ellis signed up to The Prince’s Trust Enterprise programme, which aims to help young people explore their options in self-employment.

He attended the four-day Explore Enterprise course where he learned the basic principles of running a company. He was also provided with help in writing a comprehensive business plan and assigned a mentor.

His Prince’s Trust business mentor provided ongoing support from the beginning and is always there when Ellis needs support. He has also attended business meetings with Ellis and has helped with queries relating to tax and accounting.

By expanding into related areas, such as selling logs and kindling, Ellis is able to maintain a steady cash flow.

“If I hadn’t got in touch with The Prince’s Trust and set up my own business, I just don’t know where I’d be now. Business is still tough in this economy but we are doing well.”