Discretionary fund launches to support small businesses feeling the impact of COVID-19

May 29 2020

More South Gloucestershire small businesses that have been directly impacted by the coronavirus outbreak can now apply for a grant of up to £5000 through the new Discretionary Fund for Small Businesses.

Over £2.6 million has been made available by Government to support South Gloucestershire businesses who are ineligible for other financial schemes such as the Small Business Grant Scheme and the Retail Hospitality and Leisure Grant Scheme.

The fund will prioritise businesses in shared spaces (such as units in industrial parks, science parks and incubators which do not have their own business rates assessment), regular market traders, small charity properties that would meet the criteria for Small Business Rates Relief, and Bed and Breakfasts that pay council tax rather than business rates.

Other examples of the type businesses that could be eligible include:

• Independent businesses – those that are not eligible for Small Business Rate Grants due to payment to a landlord of all-inclusive rent 

• Community organisations – those not eligible for Small Business Rate Grants due to payment to a landlord of all-inclusive rent 

• Childcare Nurseries – those with a rateable value over £15,000 who will not have received business support grants to date, or that are not eligible for Small Business Rate Grants due to payment to a landlord of all-inclusive rent. 

Leader of South Gloucestershire Council, Cllr Toby Savage said: “It’s great news that many more small businesses who have not yet been able to claim financial support for the impact felt by the coronavirus outbreak can now apply through this scheme. We welcome the additional funding that has been made available as a result of our lobbying and we are committed to helping kick-start the local economy here in South Gloucestershire following the extremely difficult past few months. 

“South Gloucestershire is great place to run a business and we will be doing everything in our power to support our local businesses get back on their feet and to continue to thrive as part of our vibrant local economy. This also means continuing to work with our local chambers of commerce and neighbouring councils to lobby the government on further support for local businesses.”

Applications are open until 8 June with eligible businesses expected to demonstrate a significant drop in income because of the coronavirus pandemic restriction measures.

For further information on eligibility, criteria, grant amounts and any other questions, please read the Discretionary Grants Fund FAQs before beginning your application www.southglos.gov.uk/discretionaryfund