Dragons’ Den judge, Deborah Meaden, is backing the Local Business Accelerators scheme being launched by the Lancashire Telegraph and other local newspapers today.

Regional and local newspapers across the country will deliver a huge boost to UK business by pledging an unprecedented £15m of free advertising to the most dynamic fledgling enterprises.

One lucky business from across the country will get individual mentoring sessions from national ambassador Miss Meaden, who will become a consultant and mentor to the business for one year.

Miss Meaden said: “I’ve seen the unique contribution that local press makes to the success of local businesses time and again with my own ventures.

"In this age of enterprise it has never been more important to drive awareness about the value of local marketing for a fledgling business.

"That is why I’m so proud to support Local Business Accelerators and help build thriving and industrious communities.”

For more information on the Local Business Ambassadors scheme, visit the website below.