With Covid-19 restrictions beginning to be lifted from next week, as the country eases out of lockdown, lots of businesses are starting to prepare for a safe, and successful reopening of their premises. The new ‘Restart Grant‘, which begins this month, is a support package from the government that is expected to benefit almost 700,000 small business owners that have had to close their doors as a result of the pandemic.
The Restart Grant scheme will aim to help businesses in the retail, hospitality, accommodation, leisure and personal care sectors get back on their feet post-lockdown after having to shut at the end of last year. In order to be eligible for the grant a company must’ve been unable to operate at all during the lockdown period. However businesses that are not eligible for a Restart Grant may be able to apply for the Additional Restrictions Grant – this is money that has been made available from April, specifically for firms that are not eligible for the Restart Grant but have still experienced a sever impact on their business due to Covid-19.
How much could your business receive?
The scheme is offered to businesses that provide an in-person service in fixed-rate paying premises. For non-essential retail business premises, grants of up to £6,000 are being made available. For hospitality, accommodation, leisure, personal care and gym facilities – some of which will reopen later in the year and will be more impacted by restrictions as per the government’s roadmap – grants of up to £18,000 are available.
The amount of money available to a business owner depends on the nature of their business (as explained above) and the rateable value of their premises (this can be found on your latest rates bill). To find out exactly how much you could be entitled to, you should visit your local council’s website which can be found here.
Is your business eligible for the Restart Grant?
To be eligible for the Restart Grant a business must firstly be within the non-essential retail, hospitality, accommodation, leisure, personal care or gym sector and be based in England. It must also have been unable to operate during lockdown following lockdown rules. Businesses must be responsible for Business Rates and trading from their business premises on 1st April 2021.
Businesses excluded from the fund are those that are in administration, are insolvent or those that have been struck off the Companies House register. A business will also be excluded if it has exceeded the permitted subsidy allowance.
The criteria for the scheme can be found here.