The Childcare Business Grants Scheme was introduced to boost the provision of childcare in England and to incentivise entrepreneurship. It encourages and supports the starting up of new childcare businesses by providing a flat rate start-up grant.

Those intending to set up a new childcare business can apply to the scheme to:

  • Obtain financial support to help with the costs of getting trained and registered.
  • Access a business mentor, to provide support and advice during the business start-up phase.
  • Access business advice tailored to the childcare sector.

There are three types of grants available:

  1. A £500 grant for an early years childminder or childcare provider on domestic premises.
  2. A £1,000 grant for an early years childminder or childcare provider on domestic premises of children with special educational needs and disability (SEN/D).
  3. A £1,000 grant for a Childminder Agency (CMA).

All costs incurred for the set-up of a business will be considered as eligible. These include:

  • Courses attended.
  • Health checks.
  • Public liability insurance.
  • House or commercial building insurance cover.
  • Additional car insurance to cover the transportation of the children in care, and any additional equipment that is purchased.

The scheme is now open to newly-registered early years childminders, childcare providers on domestic premises and Childminder Agencies (CMAs) in England. This means:

  • the business must have been registered with Ofsted/CMA for under three months; AND
  • the applicant has already started the business (this cannot be before the Ofsted/CMA registration date) OR
  • if the business has not yet started the applicant must plan to do so within six months of the application date.

The scheme is due to end by 31 March 2018 or sooner if all funds have been exhausted.