Valley's small businesses hit by lockdown to be helped with new pot of cash

An additional £867,750 has been made available to Ribble Valley Borough Council to provide further support to the borough’s small businesses during the coronavirus crisis.

Tuesday, 2nd June 2020, 9:21 am
Updated Tuesday, 2nd June 2020, 9:22 am

The funding is on top of the £18.926m. received from the Government for the Small Business Grant Fund and the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund.

The new scheme is aimed at small businesses that were not eligible for assistance from the RHLGF. For instance, those that work in shared offices where business rates are paid by their landlord.

Small businesses that can demonstrate they have suffered a significant fall in income because of the pandemic, have relatively high ongoing fixed property-related costs and occupy property, or part of a property, with a rateable value, annual rent or annual mortgage payments below £51,000, are eligible to apply.

RVBC leader Stephen Atkinson is keen to support businesses who missed out on support under previous schemes

Grants of £25,000, £10,000 or between £500 and £10,000 will be awarded, depending on the number of applications received and funding available.

Businesses must have been trading on March 11th, 2020, and not received any other Government funding.

Ribble Valley Borough Council has been asked by the Government to prioritise certain types of businesses for the new grants: small businesses in shared offices or other flexible workspaces, regular market traders without a business rate assessment, bed and breakfasts (excluding Airbnb) that pay council tax instead of business rates and charity properties that receive charitable business rates relief and would otherwise have been eligible for small business rates relief or rural rate relief.

The new discretionary grant aims to support the maximum number of businesses with the greatest needs within available funds.

More than 1,400 Ribble Valley businesses have been assisted so far under the Small Business RHLGF.

Online applications are available to determine the number of businesses that might be eligible for a discretionary grant, subject to meeting criteria and providing a suitable business case.

Ribble Valley Borough Council leader, Stephen Atkinson, said: “We are pleased the Government has recognised that a number of businesses missed out on support under the previous grant schemes. We will be using our knowledge of the local economy to assist those small businesses that fall within the new criteria and can demonstrate they are most in need of support.”

Further details on the Discretionary Grants Fund criteria and an online form are available at ‘Covid-19 Business Support’ at ribblevalley.gov.uk or ow.ly/L25z50zTo3x

Ribble Valley Borough Council is still accepting applications from eligible businesses for the Small Business RHLGF. Government guidance for all of the the funds is available at gov.uk.