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keyfact Horsham District

The Horsham District is home to more than 7,000 VAT-registered businesses with over three quarters of these being small (less than 5 employees) and many being home-based businesses.

Small and Home-Based Businesses

The definition of a small business is employing the owner and/or up to 9.
The Horsham District has a thriving small business community with 87% of all the businesses in the Horsham District classed as small, many based at home.

Horsham District Council has raised the profile of home-based businesses and become the leading Local Authority in the UK, through its pioneering research in 2002 into the numbers and needs of home-based businesses: Horsham District Council recognised the growing numbers of home-based businesses in the District, particularly in rural areas and wanted to develop initiatives to support them. Rural home-based businesses play a significant role in the economy of their local communities, often providing the only means of employment and supporting village shops and post offices.

Since the first research in 2002, home-based businesses have grown in numbers throughout the UK with many organisations carrying out research into their numbers and needs. Home-based businesses are a growth sector.

In 2010 over half, (2.8m), of the UK’s 4.7m SME’s were home based.
Running a business from home has positive and negative aspects. The positives include: Having low overheads, avoiding the daily commute and being able to fit around family commitments.

The negatives include: The isolation factor, separating family and the business and, if you're the only one involved in the business, coping with all the aspects of running a business, whilst getting to grips with Government 'red tape'.

Should I move my business out of home?
10 questions to ask yourself before committing to office space. Read more...

Horsham District Council is very keen to support small businesses and has pioneered Horsham Microbiz, a highly successful annual event, started in 2003, as a result of the research carried out into home based businesses and the support they needed. The support that was highlighted through the research is the same required by all small businesses, whether home-based or in commercial premises. Microbiz also provides a treasure trove of information for anyone thinking of starting a business.

The Council has also worked with the local food and drink producers in the District since 2003 to showcase all the outstanding local food and drink in the District through its annual Horsham District Food & Drink Festival.

Microbiz and Horsham District Food & Drink Festival are organised to encourage local purchasing  whether in business or as a consumer. As a result of these two initiatives Horsham District Council was awarded the Federation of Small Businesses Local Authority Friendly Award.

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