Brighton has been named the ‘Best place to start a small business in the UK’ for the fourth time in five years, in a comprehensive study complied by Informi, the website offering free practical advice and support for small businesses. The new study incorporates data from leading think tank Centre for Cities compiled prior to the ongoing Covid-19 (coronavirus) pandemic.
Brighton took the top spot in the annual study in 2016, , with Ipswich winning the title in 2017. The 2019 study, which looked at the 2010s as a whole, saw Reading triumph.
This year’s study examined data from the last financial year, focusing on eight different criteria across the 63 largest towns and cities in the UK to determine where had the best environment for small and medium-sized businesses to succeed. Categories included the number of new businesses, current business stock, pollution levels and digital connectivity.
Brighton performed strongly across the board and was in the top three for the number of new start-ups, overall business stock and low pollution levels. Cambridge maintained its second place position from 2020 in this year’s list, followed by Northampton which rose three places to third.
Previous winner Ipswich performed well, rising by four places on the previous survey to take fourth place, with Oxford and Exeter also climbing the chart to break into the top 10.
|Position 2021||Location||Change since 2020|
Steven Drew, spokesperson for Informi said, “2021 has been a difficult year for SMEs throughout the UK. However, what this data shows is that across the country, there are real opportunities for SMEs to not only weather the current economic storm but form the cornerstone of the UK’s economic recovery through creating jobs, bringing prosperity to regions and attracting external investment. Over the past five years, Brighton has shown that it is welcoming to entrepreneurs, supports local businesses to thrive and offers a great example to other towns and cities on how they can do the same.
“However, whilst there is plenty that can be done at a businesses, including shopping locally, it’s also key that they get the help they need from elsewhere. With the data showing a rise in business closures – even prior to the impact of the pandemic – it’s vital that the government commits to its ‘levelling up’ agenda by ensuring that areas all across the UK are enabled to help small businesses in their region grow and succeed.”