We have had to change the way that some of our service operates to meet the guidelines set out by the government in response to the Coronavirus pandemic and to provide additional support for those affected.

This grant funding is for businesses that are not eligible for other support schemes. Businesses which have received cash grants from any central government COVID-19 related scheme are ineligible for funding from the discretionary grants fund. Such grant schemes include but are not limited to:

  • Small Business Grant Fund
  • Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant
  • The Fisheries Response Fund
  • Domestic Seafood Supply Scheme (DSSS)
  • The Zoos Support Fund
  • The Dairy Hardship Fund

Businesses who have applied for the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme are eligible to apply for this scheme.

Businesses who are eligible for the Self-Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS) are eligible to apply for this scheme as well.

Only businesses which were trading on 11 March 2020 are eligible for this scheme.

Companies that are in administration, are insolvent or where a striking-off notice has been made are not eligible for funding under this scheme

We are accepting applications from:

  • Small businesses in shared offices or other flexible workspaces. Examples could include units in industrial parks, science parks and incubators which do not have their own business rates assessment;
  • Regular market traders with fixed building costs, such as rent, who do not have their own business rates assessment;
  • Bed and Breakfasts which pay Council Tax instead of business rates; and
  • Charity properties in receipt of charitable business rates relief which would otherwise have been eligible for Small Business Rates Relief or Rural Rate Relief.
  • Businesses operating in the visitor economy (i.e. tourism and hospitality) and the supply chain of this industry that did not qualify for the previous grant schemes that have a rateable value under £100,000.

Grant awards

Grants are available from £1,000 to £25,000. Businesses will need to evidence that they have suffered a significant fall in income as a result of COVID-19 and have relatively high ongoing fixed-property related costs.

Levels of discretionary grants available
Level Award Small businesses in shared offices or other flexible workspaces Regular market traders B&Bs which pay Council Tax Charity properties in receipt of charitable business rates relief Rate-payers relevant to the Local Economy
One £1,000 Yes Yes Yes No No
Two £2,500 Yes Yes Yes No No
Three £5,000 Yes No Yes No Yes
Four £10,000 Yes No No Yes Yes
Five £25,000 No No No No Yes

Making an application

Before you start you will need to be able to evidence that:

  • Your business has suffered a significant fall in income due to the COVID-19 crisis - provide bank statements from 1 March 2020 to 30 April 2020.
  • Your business has relatively high ongoing fixed property related costs - provide proof of your lease/mortgage/rent.
  • Your business trading on 11 March 2020 - provide bank statements.

Applications will be prioritised based on the relative fall in income, ongoing fixed property-related costs and number of employees the business has. If phase one is oversubscribed, awards to businesses will be prioritised based on their relative levels of ongoing fixed property-related costs, the number of employees and relevance to the Local Economy.

The highest priority businesses will start being paid from 1 June.

As we will be accepting applications until 7 June we aim to start paying the next level of priority businesses week commencing 8 June. 

  Apply for a COVID-19 discretionary business grant

The detection and prevention of fraud

We will not accept deliberate manipulation and fraud. Any business or person caught falsifying their records to gain additional grant money will face prosecution and any funding issued will be subject to claw back, including those paid in error.

By submitting an application you consent to us checking the information you provide with third parties and other council departments in order to prevent and detect fraud.

We have a duty to inform the Valuation Office Agency of any changes that would affect business rates and council tax records.

Read the Discretionary Grant Policy for more details of the grant and how it is administered.