The Patent Office has just produced two excellent booklets for inventors. One is called "Essential Reading" and it really is. The other is called a "Patents Application Guide".
The first of these booklets sets out to provide the sort of information an inventor, investor or other person with an interest in an invention needs to consider before committing him or herself to applying for a patent. It also contains a summary of the patenting process in the UK and abroad as well as information about renewing, enforcing and exploiting patent rights.
The other guide is all about how to apply for a UK patent. Right at the starts it warns of the need to keep your invention secret and the importance of getting professional advice. Other good advice is to be on the look out for invention promotion companies. Sources of disinterested and in some cases free advice are identified.