The Horn secures investment from COVID-19 innovation fund
- Credit: Alan Davies
A popular live music venue in St Albans has secured investment from an emergency COVID-19 fund.
The Horn is one of the latest businesses to be awarded funding from the Crowdfund Hertfordshire: Small Business Innovation Fund,
This fund supports businesses in the retail, tourism, hospitality, and other related sectors most impacted by coronavirus.
Between £2,000 and £5,000 in match funding is available for eligible small and micro businesses within the tourism, leisure, hospitality, retail, arts and cultural sectors from Hertfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership’s £200,000 COVID-19 fund, administered by Visit Herts via the Crowdfunder Pay It Forward platform.
During the first lockdown, The Horn was able to adapt its business model to produce and sell merchandise through a new online shop.
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Although currently closed due to the second national lockdown, the pub in Victoria Street is expanding its online operations and increasing engagement with customers by creating a range of exciting new online content.
The Horn has already been successful in utilising funding support via the Music Venue Trust.
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Juicebox Live’s Luke Hinton, promotion and booking manager for The Horn, said: “The Horn would like to thank Hertfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership for the support that they’ve provided in these unprecedented times.
“This financial support has already enabled us to launch an online shop to sell venue branded merchandise and we have begun an online YouTube channel conducting interviews with musicians and music industry professionals.”
Bakerbee Bakery in Watford, Hemel Hempstead-based DJ’s Soft Play, and Welwyn Garden City corporate catering company Eatlunch are the other organisations to also benefit from the countywide scheme.
They join Auriel Holidays, The Brewery Tap, Creative Juices Brewing Company, and Save Our Standon (Standon Calling Festival) whose successful applications were announced during the summer.
Applicants are required to raise money for their project through pledges from their community and loyal customers.
Once a business secures their target through their Crowdfunder campaign, successful applicants are able to unlock match funding from the Hertfordshire LEP fund.
Nitin Dahad, chair of Hertfordshire LEP’s enterprise and innovation board, said: “Hertfordshire’s tourism, hospitality and visitor economy businesses are facing a tough winter season ahead.
“Those that have withstood the severe challenges and disruption caused by the pandemic to date will need support over the coming months to remain resilient, continue to adapt and innovate, and ultimately provide employment to local people.
“This fund, part of our wider £3.28m COVID-19 business support package for the county, provides the investment needed to help small businesses persevere and grow, and we strongly urge all those that are eligible to apply.”
For more information and how to apply, visit www.visithertsbusiness.co.uk/get-involved/crowdfund-hertfordshire-small-business-innovation-fund/
Find out more about Herts LEP’s investments to date at www.hertfordshirelep.com