Companies across the Marches are being urged to apply to a £200 million fund to drive innovation and boost the post-pandemic economy.

The Sustainable Innovation Fund will be open to companies across all parts of the UK to help businesses recover from the impact Covid-19 has wrought on the economy.

The money could be used for developing new technologies to make homes more energy efficient or to fight infections and diseases or to help cut the carbon footprint of public transport in towns and cities.

In a move to support people across the country to establish more ‘climate-positive’ behaviours, businesses and start-ups could also make use of the fund to develop smart sustainability-focused projects – from apps encouraging people to cut down their food waste to sustainable biodegradable packaging.

Yasmin Sulaman, Marches Growth Hub Business Support project officer, urged companies across Herefordshire, Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin to consider applying to the fund.

She said: “This fund could help companies to innovate and develop exciting new technologies to shape their own and the country’s future.

“As we start to emerge from the coronavirus lockdown it could play a significant role in shaping their success.”

Business secretary Alok Sharma MP added his voice to the call.

He said: “We’re backing our innovators and risk-takers with new investment so they can recover and grow out of the coronavirus pandemic.

“I am urging businesses in all parts of the UK to come forward and pitch their state-of-the-art ideas to us, so we can work together to power the UK’s economic recovery.”

Dr Ian Campbell, executive chair of Innovate UK, added: “Many businesses have successfully, and innovatively, responded to the challenges posed by the coronavirus.

“Organisations will recover from the pandemic, and as the situation stabilises, we will help businesses build an innovative economy that is viable and resilient.”

To find out more and check eligibility requirements visit: