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Delivered by Co-operatives UK in partnership with The Co-operative Bank

The Hive application guidance – support for existing co‑ops

Application guidance

This guidance is for people who are applying for The Hive support for existing co‑ops – specifically support regarding:

  • Sustainability and growth.
  • Trading difficulties.


The Hive programme in its current form is having a facelift. We are launching a new, improved support programme the week of 16 January 2023 which will continue to support new and existing co-ops and conversions.

To give us time to transfer to the new programme, we are taking a short break from taking applications under the existing Hive programme.

If you have started and saved an application using the 'save my progress and resume later' function: 

  • You should have an email with a link to continue and complete your application
  • If you don't have an email, please contact [email protected] with any details of your application, including the email you used for your application and we will help you access your application
  • For any incomplete applications, the deadline for submitting is midnight, Sunday 29 January – please contact [email protected] if you have any questions

Not an existing co-op applying for support?

If you need application guidance for other Hive support, click on the relevant link below:

This guidance takes you through the questions you will be asked in the application form – it is most useful to have this information with you as you complete the application. 

You can have this guidance open in a separate tab or window, or click the download button at the top of this page to download a pdf copy of the guidance.

There are two steps when applying to The Hive

Step 1: Eligibility checker

You should have already completed the initial eligibility checker. If you are able to demonstrate that you meet our minimum eligibility, you will have been directed to a page ready to complete the full application form. PLEASE NOTE: As we are closing this application form, if you have not already completed the eligibility checker and started an application, you will need to wait until the week starting 16 January. Read more >>

Step 2: Application form

Applicants complete a full application form – questions will relate to your support needs.

The following pages outline the information you need to successfully complete the online application form – including any documents you should attach in support of your application.

We will assess your application based on the information you provide.

The Hive is open to applications all year round

Applications are reviewed at monthly panel assessment meetings. We aim to notify applicants of the outcome within two weeks of a monthly panel meeting. This means that the maximum amount of time an applicant will have to wait for a decision following submission is eight weeks.