FOUR scholarships places have been put up for grabs for ambitious firms in Bury.

Promoters of the Barclays Scale-Up UK programme are on the lookout for deserving candidates.

Scholarship leaders are searching for small and medium-sized businesses as part of their Building Thriving Local Economies initiative in the borough.

The banking concern has been working closely with Bury Council and local business groups like the Bury Growth Hub, with four spaces now on offer.

The programme recognises the day-to-day time pressures on business owners and has been designed as a series of two-day workshops, which take place over 12 weeks in Cambridge to make the opportunity as accessible as possible to business owners.

Work focuses on the core challenges experienced by business owners and their management team when looking to grow, by providing a bespoke, hands-on approach to help accelerate business growth.

The curriculum covers everything from strategy, to marketing and workplace culture, helping business leaders and their management team to develop tailored growth plans to put into practice in their own business following completion of the course.

Scholarship applications are open to clients and non-clients of Barclays until the end of March, and fees for successful applicants for the four Bury scholarship places selected by Cambridge Judge Business School will be paid for by Barclays.

Two of last year's participants, Rebecca Lacey, of Lacey Plumbing and Heating, and Josh Morris, of Busy Bins, have shared their experiences on the bank's website.

Ambitious business owners are being urged to find out more about the scheme by going online to

The partnership has hosted events for SMEs and careers fairs.

This year’s students recently attended their second workshop at Victoria Warehouse in Manchester, and will celebrate their graduation ceremony at Bury Town Hall in July.