Primary Authority advice

The Greater Manchester Regulatory Centre of Excellence (GMRCE) aims to bring together businesses and regulators to improve the way regulation is delivered and received and help businesses to get it right first time.

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Expert advisors from ten Greater Manchester local authorities and Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service (GMFRS) are offering a range of free and paid-for regulatory support and advice to businesses, for more information about the services on offer, please contact Nick Reddrop on 07545462247 or   

A primary authority partnership is the GMRCE’s flagship offer to businesses, providing access to expert advice across all ten Greater Manchester local authorities as well as GMFRS through a single point of contact.

What is Primary Authority?

A primary authority partnership is a legal partnership between a local authority or fire service and a business or group of businesses (for example a trade association). Partnerships are open to any business regulated by environmental health, trading standards, licensing or fire safety regulations.

Through a primary authority partnership, you can receive reliable and authoritative advice tailored to the needs of your business on how to meet your legal responsibilities. 

Advice provided by your primary authority has a legal standing. Other local councils must take it into account and contact the advising authority if there is non-compliance issue or they receive a complaint about your business.

Benefits to your business:

  • Specialist scrutiny of your processes and practices in a safe environment, highlighting any deficiencies and focusing on the areas of high risk for your business.
  • Have confidence that you are complying with the law – and protecting your customers – because you are receiving advice from the very people who carry out enforcement!
  • Reduce the risk of costly mistakes – our experts help you get it right first time.
  • Save time - draw on established means of meeting requirements of the law from regulators who know and understand the best ways to do it, giving you more time to work on your core activities.
  • Improve your reputation – access to the primary authority partner logo and recognition of robust compliance procedures.

Inspection plans

As part of a primary authority partnership, a national inspection plan can be produced by the primary authority. This is of particular benefit to businesses that have numerous sites throughout the country. An inspection plan can be used by your business to gain unique insight into the effectiveness of the implementation of your policies and practices at your premises throughout the country. It can also be used to avoid local authority officers spending time checking parts of your business that are already covered by Primary Authority advice.

What does it cost?

Advice is provided at a cost recovery hourly rate of £95, offering considerable savings on consultancy fees. Your GMRCE coordinator will discuss with you how many hours advice is required depending on the specific needs of your business. The GMRCE can offer you a payment plan to help you spread the cost of the advice throughout the financial year.

How do I access it?

If you have any questions or are interested in a primary authority partnership, please contact Nick Reddrop, GMRCE coordinator on 0161 925 1018/07895 208063/ or visit the BBfA Primary Authority page on the GC Business Growth Hub website for more details.

This page was last updated on 10 October 2022

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