Further to the Prime Minister’s announcement on the 4th January 2021, declaring another national lockdown, Chancellor Rishi Sunak has announced “top up” grants for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses adversely impacted by the new lockdown, with the proposal expected to cost £4.6 billion and benefit over 600,000 businesses.
Who is the grant available to and how much is available?
A grant is available through to the Spring for businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure industry who have been forced to close or operate at a reduced capacity, as a result of the national lockdown.
The amount available is on a per-property basis and is calculated on the rateable value of the individual business and will be granted to closed businesses as follows:
Rateable Value Grant Amount
Between £15,000 and £51,000 £6,000
Over £51,000 £9,000
This grant is in addition to existing financial support for impacted businesses including grants up to £3,000 for businesses forced to close and up to £2,100 per month for impacted businesses once they reopen.
How to apply for the new top-up grant?
All businesses need to apply for a grant through their local authorities. The government is giving the new funds to councils to distribute to businesses, large and small, as it did in November 2020 during the second national lockdown.
What happens if you are not eligible for the top-up grant, but your business has closed as a result of the lockdown?
The Chancellor also announced a new £594 million discretionary fund today, intended to support those businesses impacted by the latest lockdown, but that are not eligible for the retail, hospitality and leisure top-up grants.
These may be businesses such as market traders and home-based operators, who do not pay business rates and are therefore, not eligible for the top-up grants. These funds may also be available to businesses who do not have to shut down due to the national lockdown, but have been severely hampered in operation.
Other Additional Support
The government has also provided 100% business rates relief for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses. The furlough scheme has been extended until the end of April 2021 and the availability of government-backed Coronavirus Business Interruption Loans has been extended until 31 March 2021.
If you have any questions or would like to know more about how we can help you with a business issue you may have, please contact John Szepietowski.