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Green entrepreneurs fund

We're launching a £2 million grant fund for businesses interested in developing and investing in green energy and carbon reduction schemes.


Green entrepreneurs fund logo

The scheme is open to small and medium sized businesses based in Derbyshire with up to 250 staff and micro-business with up to 10 staff.

Scheme funds

Green entrepreneurs scholarship fund

A training fund to support individuals to retrain with skills to enable them to enter the field of alternative energy. £100,000 will be made available through this fund. Find out more about how to apply for a scholarship fund on this page.

Green entrepreneurs small grant fund

Grants of £10,000 to £20,000 for new and existing businesses with game changing proposals in alternative energy, clean fuel and carbon reduction. £500,000 will be made available through this fund.

The first round of applications has now closed with a further round due to be launched in September.

Green entrepreneurs demonstrator fund

£1.2 million set aside for a small number of high quality projects from entrepreneurs wanting to establish green, alternative energy or low carbon initiatives in Derbyshire to provide community heat and power schemes. The minimum grant available through this fund would be £100,000. Applications for this fund have now closed. We'll add any future opportunities. To discuss your proposal, email gep@derby.ac.uk

How the Green Entrepreneurs Fund programme works

The programme, which is being funded through our COVID recovery fund, is being set up in collaboration with the University of Derby as part of our COVID economic strategy and climate change commitments.

Grants will be awarded by the green entrepreneurs fund programme board, which will include representatives from ourselves and the University of Derby. Decisions will be based on the recommendation of assessing officers.

Scholarship grant

The scholarship fund supports individuals to retrain with skills to enable them to enter the field of alternative energy. £100,000 will be made available through this fund.

The growing importance of sustainable development and the shift to a low-carbon economy requires structural changes across sectors and occupations. This shift leads to new ‘green’ jobs and ‘greening’ of existing ones that translate to new skill sets, update of curricula or even new qualifications; for example, the adoption and dissemination of clean technologies require skills in technology application, adaptation and maintenance.

The scholarship grants will allow individuals to study around their existing responsibilities. It will enable them to obtain the skills and qualifications they need to change their career or progress in employment. The study can take place either online or face to face or a combination of both.

There is a wide range of skills and training that individuals could undertake that would contribute to a net-zero economy and support the development of low carbon environmental, goods and services (LCEGS). The scheme is looking to support skills development under the following categories:

  • environmental
  • renewable energy
  • low carbon
  • sustainable food, drink and farming
  • clean growth

Outlined are some of the skills considered eligible for the scholarship fund, but the list is not exhaustive. Applicants are encouraged to demonstrate within their application how the skills they will be developing will contribute to a 'net zero carbon' economy within the above areas.

  • skills to design and adopt technologies, products and processes increasing resource efficiency, including low carbon energy generation
  • individuals with transferable knowledge for nuclear and renewable energy (including wind and marine)
  • individuals with transferable knowledge to install energy efficiency measures and retrofit at a household and business premises level
  • actions to improve climate resilience (retrofitting water efficient technologies in households and business premises)
  • skills to support community energy generation

To be eligible to apply for a grant under the scholarships fund applicants must:

  • be an individual
  • live in Derbyshire (outside of Derby City boundaries)
  • study and gain skills/qualifications in low carbon technologies that contribute to a net-zero carbon economy
  • be 19 years old or over

The grant will pay for training where there is no other support available to fund that learning. 

Applicants will be ineligible if when they apply, they are:

  • attending further or higher education on a fulltime basis or
  • in any government funded learning, where 100% of the cost is already paid
  • an ineligible overseas national

Apply for a green entrepreneur scholarship grant

Applicants can download the GEP scholarship application form and all completed forms should be returned by email to gep@derby.ac.uk

Applicants are encouraged to contact the careers service and discuss their plans before applying for a green entrepreneur programme scholarship grant.

By contacting the careers service, applicants will be given quality careers advice and guidance and an independent assessment to ensure the right learning is selected. Derbyshire national careers advisers will provide support through the application process and assist with the hardship element of the grant if required.

Expressions of interest

Small Grant Fund and Demonstrator Fund expressions of interest forms are attached to this page.

See our carbon savings examples to help you complete you expression of interest.