TV “Dragons’ Den” entrepreneur shares recipe for success with Lancashire firms

Ice-cream innovator on the menu at Superfast Lancashire event; 
BT futurologist gives unique insight in what lies ahead for county’s businesses in a fibre world 

A Lancashire healthy food specialist and star of television’s ‘Dragons’ Den’ will 
ensure county businesses get their just desserts next month. 

Kirsty Henshaw, who hails from Preston, is the keynote speaker at the ‘Get 
Your Business Superfast’ event on Wednesday, February 5. 

Organised by Superfast Lancashire and its Business Support team, 
the event at Burnley Football Club’s Turf Moor stadium is free for the county’s small 
and medium-sized businesses and is designed to help them make the most of the 
latest communications, gain business knowledge and a competitive advantage. 
Lancashire businesses wanting to find out more about this event and whether 
they are eligible for the Business Support Programme should log onto: 

Superfast Lancashire is the multi-million pound partnership between 
Lancashire County Council and BT – which will make high-speed broadband 
available to 97 per cent of Lancashire’s homes and businesses by the end of 2015 – 
with additional funding from the Government’s Broadband Delivery UK programme, 
as well as the European Regional Development Fund, Blackburn with Darwen 
Council and Blackpool Council. 

Throughout the day in a series of informal presentations, masterclasses and 
workshops, delegates will be given advice on areas such as digital marketing and 
social media, as well as de-mystifying ‘Cloud Computing’. How to make better use of 
the World Wide Web and creative website design will also be covered. 

Representatives from a number of local organisations who specialise in 
business support will also be on hand to offer advice during the lunch break, along 
with members of the Superfast Lancashire Business Support team. 

The first half of the event kicks off with a presentation by BT futurologist, Dr 
Nicola Millard, who will give her own unique insight into what may lie around the 
corner for both businesses and their customers. 

The event will conclude with ice-cream and healthy desserts innovator, Kirsty 
Henshaw, serving up her own tasty business tips for local firms. 

Kirsty, who went to Penthwortham Girls High School, will explain how in 
2010 she became one of the youngest entrepreneurs to secure a £65,000 
investment from ‘Dragons’ Peter Jones and Duncan Bannatyne. 

She will outline how, after an extremely challenging period, she went on to 
expand her Longridge-based food business, which now supplies several of the 
country’s leading supermarkets with her own brand of healthy ready-meals. 

County Councillor, Jennifer Mein, leader of Lancashire County Council, said: 
“Superfast Lancashire will bring great benefits for the county – not just for individuals 
but for businesses too. A key part of the project is ensuring that business people 
across the county are fully aware of how access to high-speed broadband can help 
their businesses.” 

The Superfast Lancashire Business Support Centre is based at a purpose- 
built e-business suite at the Lancashire Business Park, in Leyland, from where the 
team runs tailored ‘teach-in’ sessions to help SMEs across the county learn first- 
hand how superfast broadband and other communications can help their businesses 

Councillor Mein added: “I have seen for myself what is on offer at Superfast 
Lancashire’s Business Support Centre and I’d urge local business people to come 
along to this exciting event and find out for themselves how their businesses can 

Guests will also have the opportunity to find out more about the county’s 
prestigious BIBAs business awards, which are this year supported by Superfast 


Notes to Editors 
Superfast Lancashire’s Business Support Programme is governed by eligibility criteria defined by the ERDF (European Regional Development Fund) based on size, primary activity, turnover etc. Businesses will be expected to complete an initial short self-certification form which will be validated by one of the advisors. 
The programme will link with other key support initiatives across Lancashire. This will enable businesses to gain from the extended benefits of complementary programmes such as Regenerate Pennine Lancashire, subject to not having exceeded their ERDF allowance. 

The Business Support Programme is funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) in partnership with Superfast Lancashire. 
BT is contributing £30 million to the project whilst £10.8 million will come from Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK), £16.5 million from the European Regional Development Fund and £5.2 million from local councils (£4.7m from LCC, £300,000 from Blackburn with Darwen Council and £230,000 from Blackpool Council. 

This project is part financed by the North West European Regional Development Fund Programme 2007 to 2013. 

The Department for Communities and Local Government is the managing authority for the European Regional Development Fund Programme, which is one of the funds established by the European Commission to help local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support local businesses and create jobs. For more information visit 

Superfast Britain is a Government programme of investment in broadband and communication infrastructure across the UK. Run by the Department of Culture, Media and Sport, this investment helps businesses to grow, creates jobs and will make Britain more competitive in the global race. The portfolio is comprised of three elements: 
• £780m to extend superfast broadband to 95% of the UK by 2017 
• £150m to provide high speed broadband to businesses in 22 cities 
• £150m to improve quality and coverage of mobile phone and basic data network services 
Administered on behalf of Government by Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK), Superfast Britain is transforming Britain by promoting growth, enabling skills and learning, and improving quality of life. 
For further information: https://www.gov.uk/broadband-delivery-uk