A COMPANY near Chester making dog beds and accessories set up during lockdown has received a cash boost from the council.

Dog Co. celebrates everything brilliant about Britain with collections inspired by the landscapes and historical archives.

The discretionary grant from Cheshire West and Chester Council has been used for marketing the new business, based in Stretton, spreading the word through news, views, and videos.

The company offers ethical, sustainable, and stylish dog beds and accessories, handmade in England.

Founded by interior designer Caroline Bate and inspired by her four-legged family of Miniature Wirehair Daschund, Ottilie Lettuce and Labrador, Hunter, Dog Co. offers affordable and practical dog bed ranges to suit everyday life and is proud to support other British businesses earning it Made in Britain accreditation just four days into the first lockdown.

Caroline: “It’s been a tough year and launching a business in the middle of lockdown wasn’t easy, but it was essential for us to keep moving forwards.

"The concept for Dog Co. came about from listening to our clients for sister company Hugo & Otto who simply loved our products, but they were too expensive for them. So, we wanted to take all that we had learned and create something still beautiful, but more affordable.”

It took six months to take Dog Co. from concept to comprehensive plan, remaining true to the British manufacturing techniques and style as well as ensuring a quality product, all the while at an affordable price.

The coronavirus pandemic played its part in delaying the launch process as fabric production ceased, R&D was halted for periods and the team grew accustomed to the new-normal way of business.

During this time, Caroline applied for discretionary business grants in line with the Government guidance and was awarded two allocations of funding.

The first allowed Dog Co. to purchase essential equipment for the business and the second to be able to launch and market the products.

Caroline added: “I spoke to the amazing team at the council who listened to my case and were able to award me enough to replace my very-ill computer, without which I wouldn’t have been able to run any business at all.

“After that I checked that I had registered with the right people so that I heard of any further support being offered. In the summer, I put in for a further grant for small business marketing and was awarded this to be able to launch Dog Co.

“We couldn’t have launched without the support of our friends over coffee and Zoom, alongside the Discretionary Grants from the council, which allowed us to get other small local businesses involved in beginning our business journey. We are delighted with the reception Dog Co. has received and look forward to working together in a positive year ahead.”

Councillor Richard Beacham, cabinet member for inclusive growth, economy & regeneration, said: “Since October 2020 the council has made a further 20,018 grant payments to support local businesses with grants totalling £ £39,177,500. The Government defined the criteria for eligible businesses whilst also allowing the council to provide a Discretionary Grant to local businesses that could have slipped through the net."

To explore the full range that includes Snoozy Pillow Cushion Dog Bed, full dog crate sets, bolster beds and floor cushions visit the website: www.dogco.uk