CARLISLE-based startup S.T.E.A.M arena has been named a finalist ahead of the North West final of the StartUp Awards.

The UK StartUp Awards was launched to recognise the start-up scene which has accelerated over the last few years with over 900,000 new businesses founded in the UK in 2023, a 12% increase from the year before.

Over 900 businesses have been shortlisted for this year’s UK StartUp Awards and the contribution of these firms - all of which were started in the last three years - is significant, having created nearly 6,000 new jobs since they were established and generating annual sales of £480 million.

Danny Barber, founder of S.T.E.A.M arena, said: “It’s absolutely amazing to be shortlisted so early on in our journey, we have been adventurous, creative, and crazy in trying to get people to notice us - it just validates that what we are trying to do is the right thing.

"S.T.E.A.M arena is our gift to the nation; a promise of a better tomorrow, making real differences in communities everywhere.

"We’re so passionate about wanting to empower the youngest generation and support communities.

"As a regional finalist, this is fantastic news and it will certainly help, but we have every hope and ambition to make it as a finalist and represent S.T.E.A.M arena at Ideas Fest in September.”

Danny hopes to establish a residence in a suburban part of Carlisle where children will have access to facilities that they may not have at home or school.

They might use this space to learn an instrument or develop their science and technology skills through practical workshops. 

The scheme was launched earlier this month and Danny is promoting the concept through TikTok and other social media. 

Danny is a parent himself and is also a school governor. He hopes that he will be able to offer something that he believes many schools are not doing at this time. 

Around 19 people have signed up for the S.T.E.A.M Arena scheme which he hopes will help parents, children, and educators to work together for the best opportunities for young people.