MORE businesses across Malvern are being encouraged to bid for council grants to survive the tough economic climate.

It comes as one of the town’s newest small firms – the Friday Beer Company – was the latest to secure some money.

The business, a brewery based in Malvern Link, secured £750 towards the cost of a new van, which will be used to collect the raw ingredients for its beers.

Bosses will also use the vehicle to deliver the ale to customers across Worcestershire and beyond.

Councillor Phil Grove, portfolio holder for economic development at the council, said: “Small businesses are the lifeblood of our economy and the council is committed to supporting new firms through its business start -up grants.

“We hope, by providing this grant in the early stages of this company’s development, we will see it successfully get off the ground and go from strength to strength.”

Gerald Williams, a director of the Friday Beer Company, said: “As a growing local business we’re very grateful for this kind of support. We’ll be using the new van to collect hops and grain from Charles Faram, the hop merchant based near Malvern, and to deliver our ale to a number of outlets across Worcestershire and Herefordshire as well as farmers’ markets.

“We’re proud to say that our ale comes from the heart of the Malvern Hills and uses local ingredients.

“This investment will help us get our produce out to local shops and restaurants so people can taste and enjoy it.”

The district council offers start-up grants of up to £750 for new traders, or up to £2,000 in a business booster grant for established firms looking for a helping hand.

Under the deal, a business must agree to match-fund the exact amount pound-for-pound from its own resources and demonstrate that it will be put to good use.

For more details on what is available, call the authority’s economic development team on 01684 862151.