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Grants and External Funding

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grants and external funding


Open 4 Business Portal

Open 4 business logo image

Carlisle City Council is providing local businesses with free access to its local business support and grant portal provided by Open4Business. This is tailored for the Carlisle area and includes local, regional and national schemes.

Business can also search for funding relevant to their size and sector. To use the portal, you will first need to register with Open4Business.


Grants and Funding


IUK Launches Sustainable Smart Factory Competition

09 November 2021/Categories: Grants_and_Funding

UK registered businesses, collaborating with partner organisations, can apply for a share of up to £20 million for research and development projects for innovations in digital technologies to reduce environmental impact within manufacturing processes.

Through the Made Smarter Innovation programme, Innovate UK (IUK) is investing £147 million to accelerate the development of game changing digital manufacturing ideas.

The aims of the Sustainable Smart Factory competition are to deliver a resilient, flexible, more productive, and environmentally sustainable UK manufacturing sector, as well as to develop new technologies that can be exploited commercially across manufacturing worldwide. The competition is split into two strands:

  • Strand 1 - Digital innovation with manufacturing data.
  • Strand 2 - Digital innovation in manufacturing processes.

To lead a project or work alone the organisation must be a UK registered business of any size, collaborating with other UK registered organisations and involving at least one SME. Consortiums must:

  • Involve a single factory or multiple factories.
  • Include both manufacturing and digital technology capabilities.
  • Be applicable to at least one manufacturing sector.

Grant funding of up to £20 million is available to fund innovation projects in this competition.

A project's total eligible costs must be between £1 million and £8 million.

  • For Strand 1, the total grant funding for the project must not exceed 50% of the total eligible project costs.
  • For Strand 2, the total grant funding for the project must not exceed 40% of the total eligible project costs.

Businesses could get funding for their eligible project costs of:

  • Up to 70% if they are a UK registered micro or small organisation.
  • Up to 60% if they are a UK registered medium-sized organisation.
  • Up to 50% if they are a UK registered large organisation.

Projects must start by 1 September 2022 and last between 12 and 24 months.

The deadline for applications is 26 January 2022 (11:00 GMT).

How To Apply

Competition dates:

  • Open: 1 November 2021
  • Competition closing date: 26 January 2022 (11:00 GMT)

Applicants are encouraged to read the general guidance for applicants to help their chances of submitting a quality application.

Those requiring more information should contact the competition helpline on 0300 321 4357 or email [email protected]

Useful documents & links

Useful Links

Addresses and contacts

For further information on how to obtain this grant locally, please contact the following:

  1. Competitions Helpline
    Innovate UK (IUK)
    Polaris House
    North Star Avenue
    SN2 1FL
    Tel: 0300 321 4357
    Email: [email protected]

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