Covid-19 response and updates

Tel: +44 (0) 191 516 6200

New Enterprise Allowance

ERDF | Department for Work and Pensions

The New Enterprise Allowance programme is co-financed by the European Social Fund

The New Enterprise Allowance is a national programme ran by JobCentre Plus to help those in receipt of benefits start up new businesses.


You must be aged 18 or over and have a business idea worthy of support and motivation to make it work.

Help you can get


  • Get a weekly allowance paid for up to 26 weeks (up to a total of £1,274). £65 per week for 13 weeks. £33 per week for 13 weeks.
  • Apply for a loan to help with start up costs (based on acceptable credit rating).


You could get:

  • An Adviser to help you develop your business idea and business plan.
  • Ongoing support from a mentor throughout the early months of trading.

“My Adviser Margaret shared lots of knowledge on starting up and signposted me to helpful events at the BIC that focussed on important matters like cash flow, record keeping and getting customers.”

How it works

Contact your Jobcentre Work Coach. If they feel your idea is potentially viable they will refer you to a Link Up Start Up online workshop. This will cover basic advice about starting up a business. Following this, if you feel your idea can be progressed with further support you will be then be referred to one of our Business Advisers.

The BIC will assess your business idea and if it has potential:

  • You’ll be signed up to the scheme and get business mentoring.

You’ll be able to claim financial support if:

  • Your business plan is approved
  • You start working at your business for 16 hours or more per week.

If you have any questions please contact us on 0191 516 6149 or

Book an appointment with an adviser