Covid - 19 Business Support and Advice

The Government has announced as set of measures to help businesses and employees during this pandemic and the Council are working closely with Central government to get the best advice and support for businesses.

Working safely during coronavirus (COVID-19)

The Government has published a guidance to help employers, employees and the self-employed understand how to work safely during the coronavirus pandemic.  Take a look at the guidance here

 Coronavirus outbreak FAQs: what you can and can’t do

The government has published guidance on staying safe outside your home and guidance on social distancing rules. Take a look at the key FAQs to help you prepare for these changes. 

Health and Safety Guidance – working safely during COVID-19

This guidance is for employers, but workers and the self-employed may also find it useful. It’s designed to help you make your work and workplace safe (be COVID-secure). Read the guidance here

Health and Safety Guidance and Risk Assessments

As an employer, you’re required by law to protect your employees, and others, from harm. Take a look at the guidance and risk assessments here

5 steps to working safely

Practical actions for businesses to take based on 5 main steps. Each guide has specific actions for businesses to take based on these steps. Take a look here

Showing you’re COVID-19 secure

The new guidance from government to help businesses in the UK work safely, includes a downloadable notice. Employers can display this in their workplaces to show their employees, customers and other visitors to their workplace, that they have followed this guidance.  Click here to download more assets for use on print and digital channels.

 Find out more information below regarding how businesses can access support:

Idox Open 4 Business

Idox Open 4 Business is a portal designed for SME’s to primarily allow them to search for grants, special loans and awards for which a business or start-up may be eligible.  Registration is free and provides access to a comprehensive databases of funding opportunities and business advise services.

Businesses can browse or search for funding, generate reports, access news items in full and set up alerts to receive updates regarding suitable funding opportunities. The browse feature gives a broader picture of types of funding might be available to support the business.

The Funding portal offers and interactive grant alert service which enables businesses to receive email updates when funding opportunities match the searches saved to the profile.

The News section of the portal features national and local funding announcements to make you aware of when new funds have been launches and new deadlines.

To make the most of this portal, please refer to the guide which provides handy tips and hints to   help businesses focus their search and plan for making a funding application. SIGN UP HERE

Apply for the Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme

This scheme helps large businesses affected by coronavirus (COVID-19) to access loans of up to £25 million.The Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS) supports large businesses, with an annual turnover of over £45 million.  All viable businesses with turnover of more than £45 million per year can apply for up to £25 million of finance. Firms with a turnover of more than £250 million can apply for up to £50 million of finance. Read more here

Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme

A new Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, delivered by the British Business Bank, will enable businesses to apply for a loan of up to £5 million, with the government covering up to 80% of any losses with no fees. Businesses can access the first 6 months of that finance interest free, as government will cover the first six months of interest payments.

Find out how to apply and more details:  Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme

Business Rates Relief and support

The Council continues to work closely with Central Government to get the best advice and support for our local businesses. We have now received clarity from Government on how various packages of relief and support should be administered. The increase in retail relief will be applied automatically to the qualifying businesses. You will not be required to do anything. We are now applying the reliefs and you will receive a letter by the end of week commencing 30 March confirming this.

  • Retail relief being increased from 50% to 100% and the scope extended to include all hospitality and leisure properties irrespective of their rate-able value (including Pubs).
  • £10,000 grant to small businesses that pay little or no business rates and are eligible for small business rate relief or retail relief with a rateable value below £15,000
  • £25,000 grant for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses with a rateable value between £15,000 and £51,000. The government is also introducing a business rates holiday for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses in England for the 2020 to 2021 tax year.
  • A £25,000 grant will also be provided to retail, hospitality and leisure businesses operating from smaller premises, with a rateable value between £15,000 and £51,000.

Find out more here : Business Rates Relief


Self-employment Income Support Scheme

The Self-employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) will support self-employed individuals (including members of partnerships) whose income has been negatively impacted by COVID-19. The scheme will provide a grant to self-employed individuals or partnerships, worth 80% of their profits up to a cap of £2,500 per month.

Find out more here : Self-employment Income Support Scheme

Statutory Sick Pay

Businesses with fewer than 250 employees, the cost of providing 14 days of Statutory Sick Pay per employee will be refunded by the government in full. This will provide two million businesses with up to £2 billion to cover the costs of large-scale sick leave.

More details here : Statutory Sick Pay


Deferring VAT and Income Tax payments

 The Government will support businesses by deferring Valued Added Tax (VAT) payments due between 20 March 2020 and 30 June 2020.

Find out more : VAT Payments

Covid-19 Corporate Financing Facility

The new Covid-19 Corporate Financing Facility (CCFF) means that the Bank of England will buy short-term debt from larger companies. This will support companies which are fundamentally strong but have been affected by a short-term funding squeeze.

Find out more : Corporate Financing Facility


Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

Under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, all UK employers with a PAYE scheme that was created and started on or before 28 February 2020, will be able to access support to continue paying part of their employees’ salary for those that would otherwise have been laid off during this crisis. This applies to employees who have been asked to stop working, but who are being kept on the pay roll, otherwise described as ‘furloughed workers’.

Find out more : Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme


Other Useful links

Business Support Helpline

West London Business

HMRC Helpline

Growth Hubs

Business Services