By Daniel Hunter

John Longworth, Director General of the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) said that the latest Bank of England lending figures show that growing businesses are being left out in the cold.

The Bank's official data shows that net lending has fallen by £300 million for the opening three months of 2013.

“Although the £300m fall in lending was a smaller drop than the previous quarter, it is a concern that lending continues to contract despite the Funding for Lending Scheme having been in place for nearly a year. It is also worrying that usage of scheme seems to have dropped significantly since the end of 2012," Longworth said.

“The real test for Funding for Lending is whether it is able to get credit flowing to young and fast-growing businesses. Unfortunatelymany of these growth firms are still being left out in the cold when it comes to accessing finance, which prevents them from expanding, creating jobs and helping to drive a business-led recovery.

"These figures give weight to the argument for the swift delivery of a British Business Bank, which must have both the scale and the infrastructure needed to help young firms grow."

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