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Shop front improvement grant

We’re offering grants of up to £5,000 to encourage independent retail businesses to improve their shop fronts.

Who can apply?

Independent retail businesses within Leicester (or the Leicester City Council area), who are looking to upgrade and improve their shop frontage and shops that have been vacant for a minimum period of six-months.

  • businesses must be an independent retailer with no more than five shops
  • project must meet the requirements of our 'Design guide' - see bottom of the page
  • applicants must be able to demonstrate how their shop front improvement will improve the look of the business and have a positive impact on the surrounding area. Like for like schemes or general maintenance work will not be eligible.
  • applications must be from the retailer of the premises and only one application can be supported for each premise.

What are the requirements of the grant?

  • Application form with a breakdown of project costs, two estimates, pictures of the current shopfront and images of how the completed project will look
  • Grant payment will only be made on completion of the work and business bank account statements of payment to the contractor
  • Any applications must not bring us into disrepute or harm our reputation
  • Planning permission/advertising consent will usually be required for shopfront improvements
  • Retrospective applications where the work has already been started or completed will not be considered, so works should not commence on-site before a grant offer is accepted.
  • This application process is independent of any planning application and vice versa, therefore if you are approved for planning permission this does not imply you are approved for this grant.

What type of work will be funded?

Grants will pay for up to 50% (City Centre retail business) or 90% (neighbourhood shopping area retail business) of the eligible project cost up to a maximum of £5,000.

  • New shop fronts, signage and external lighting (subject to planning permission)
  • Repainting of shop fronts in suitable colours
  • Awnings (subject to planning permission)
  • Access improvements (in certain cases)

What can't the fund be used for?

  • Professional fees associated with the development and delivery of the project, including planning application fees, consultancy fees and advisory services
  • Window display equipment
  • Repointing
  • Repair and cleaning of external stonework and brickwork
  • Repair and reinstatement of guttering and down-pipes
  • Externally mounted security features

Are you eligible?

Find out if you're eligible for the grant

Submit an enquiry form and we will get back to you

Full guidance notes will also be issued with the application form for your review. Please ensure you have read and reviewed these before completing the application form.

How long will this grant run for?

There is limited funding available for this grant and it will run on a first-come, first-served basis until the funding has all been used

Get in touch

Send us an email using the subject line: 'Shop font grant' to: