Business Registration

Before your business can start operating as a Limited Company, it has to be Registered with the Registrar of Companies at Companies House. 

To set up as a limited company in the UK, you will need to send the following documents to Companies House: 

  • application form IN01 to register a companywhich includes the company's registered office, type of articles, the names and addresses of its directors, statement of capital and initial shareholdings
  • memorandum of association giving the names of each subscriber and authentication that they have agreed to become members of that company
  • articles of association (unless the company adopts model articles in their entirety), describing how the company will be run, shareholders' rights, any restricted objects and details of the directors' powers
  • additional information if your application includes a prescribed or sensitive word or expression 

The officers of your company are the people formally appointed to run it - the company directors and if it has or requires one, the company secretary. Among their other duties the directors have a responsibility to prepare and deliver documents - such as the accounts and annual return. They also have a duty to notify changes to, for example, its registered office or directors.

If officers resign or new ones are appointed, or if their personal details change, the Registrar of Companies must be informed straight away. 

How many officers does a company need to have?

The number of officers required depends on the type of company:

  • Private companies must have at least one director, one of whom must be an individual person (as opposed to another company). A private company is not required to have a secretary but can choose to appoint one if they wish (GR). A sole director may also be the company secretary.
  • Public limited companies must have at least two directors, one of whom must be an individual person and a company secretary. The company secretary must be formally qualified.

Restrictions on company directors

It is up to the members to appoint the people they believe will run the company well on their behalf. The only restrictions that prevent anyone becoming a director are:

  • they must not have been disqualified from acting as a company director - unless the court has given them permission to act for a particular company
  • they must not be an undischarged bankrupt - unless they have been given permission by the court to act for a particular company
  • they must not be under the age of 16 

Can one person form a company? 

An individual can form a private company but the sole director must be an individual. A public company must be formed by at least two persons one of which must be an individual. The registration process for a limited company can be handled directly with Companies House or you can use our services.
Where can I get help?
Companies House can advise you on the basics of the registration process, but they cannot give you detailed advice on how to draw up the necessary documentation. It is a good idea to seek professional advice. 

Heron Accounting Services can help you set up your Limited Company.

Please give us a call on  0844 736 6111 or email