The Calder Valley has been revealed as the fastest growing area for small businesses in the UK, according to new research.
The region of West Yorkshire, home to the BBC’s hit series Happy Valley, has been identified as a hotspot for start-ups by GoDaddy’s research initiative.
Data from more than 2.3 million micro-enterprises – businesses with fewer than 10 employees – showed that the density of new businesses has grown by 70% over the past 12 months, amid an explosion of entrepreneurship.
Local business owners said the recent cost-of-living crisis has boosted local residents’ support for their small, independent businesses.
We live in an area made up of small towns, cities and hamlets, people cannot now afford to travel miles in their cars for services, so they go local – helping our micro-enterprises to thrive. I wouldn’t want to move my business anywhere else
Craig Moffat, founder of Clean Wheels, a bicycle mechanic and service company in the area, said: “I’m not surprised that Calder Valley tops the UK’s list of microbusiness hubs.
“People here have a great entrepreneurial spirit and the cost of living crisis has increased the desire to support local businesses in the community.
“We live in an area made up of small towns, cities and hamlets, people cannot afford to travel miles in their cars for services now, so they are going local – which helps our micro-enterprises thrive. I wouldn’t take my business anywhere else.”
According to the report, this highlighted the growth of new businesses outside of London and the south of England, which accounted for most of the top 10 locations from last year.
However, the final top 10 had no representation from London and the South.
Torfaen in Wales was the second best performing constituency, followed by Airdrie and Shotts in Scotland, Wirral West in Cheshire and Knowsley, Merseyside.
Andrew Gradon, Head of GoDaddy UK & Ireland, said: “Venture forward shows the huge contribution of UK micro-enterprises.
“They have the power to add billions to the economy while providing jobs and opportunities in their local communities. If they thrive, we all do.
“It is encouraging to see the growth of micro-enterprises flourishing in Scotland, Wales and Northern England.
“Last year’s venture forward study revealed a north-south divide in Britain’s entrepreneurial landscape, but this year’s data suggests it could start to close.”