Grants to 'help tide many businesses over' lockdown announced

Members of the public are reflected in the window of the empty shop in Ipswich

A new £4.6billion fund has been announced to help businesses through the third coronavirus lockdown. - Credit: SARAH LUCY BROWN

The government has made £4.6billion available to help support firms through the third coronavirus lockdown.

Retail, hospitality and leisure businesses will be able to access £4billion of the funding in the form of grants, while a further £594million will be made available to other impacted businesses via local authorities.

The one-off grants will be linked to business rates.

Payments will be  £4,000 for businesses with a rateable value of £15,000 or less, £6,000 for businesses with a rateable value of between £15,000 and £51,000, and £9,000 for businesses with a rateable value of more than £51,000.

Chris Starkie, chief executive of New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “The announcement of additional support for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses is very welcome.

"Many businesses impacted by lockdown restrictions will also be able to access additional funding from their local authorities.

“Another lockdown will no doubt impact many businesses – coming after a disrupted festive season and with the uncertainties of the implications of Brexit, it will be a very difficult time.

Most Read

"However, the vaccine roll-out gives us hope that there is an end in sight for restrictions.

Chris Starkie, chief executive of the New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership.

Chris Starkie, chief executive of the New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership. - Credit: Archant

"While that easing may still be a few months away, these grants will help to tide many businesses over until they are able to open again.

“The furlough scheme is in place until the end of April, and government backed loans are available until the end of March, so we hope those also give businesses some of the support they need over the coming months.

“Businesses can also get free support from our New Anglia Growth Hub business advisers, including information about our grant schemes, which are all still open for applications.”

Announcing the fund, Mr Sunak said: "The new strain of the virus presents us all with a huge challenge - and whilst the vaccine is being rolled out, we have needed to tighten restrictions further.

"Throughout the pandemic we’ve taken swift action to protect lives and livelihoods and today we’re announcing a further cash injection to support businesses and jobs until the Spring.

"This will help businesses to get through the months ahead – and crucially it will help sustain jobs, so workers can be ready to return when they are able to reopen."

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter