Southend-on-Sea Borough Council is urging all remaining eligible local businesses to apply for Government grant funding to support them during the coronavirus shutdown.
To receive a coronavirus grant, businesses need to complete a simple online form on our website.
The support packages available are:
- The Small Business Grant Fund: £10,000 for all small businesses eligible for relief under the Small Business Rate Relief scheme, with a rateable value of less than £15,000.
- The Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Business Grant Fund: £10,000 for eligible businesses in these sectors with a rateable value of under £15,000 on 11 March 2020; £25,000 for those with a rateable value of between £15,000 and £51,000 on 11 March 2020.
The Council is calling individual companies and haswritten to them a number of times to urge them to fill out the online application form in order to receive funding.
The Council has made BACS payments to 1,767 small businesses and 529 BACS payments for the retail, hospitality and leisure grants, providing £28.1m of support for local businesses.
A number of applications received have been incomplete, and the Council is following up with the relevant businesses. BACS payments can take up to three working days to clear and businesses are encouraged to check their online bank account or call their bank for progress on BACS payment.
Further financial support from the government will also be available from Monday, 4th May. Bounce Back Loans is a new 100% government-backed scheme for small businesses. The amount available to borrow is between £2,000 and £50,000 and businesses will be able to access the cash within days. Loans will be interest-free for the first 12 months, and businesses can apply online via a short and simple form. For more information, visit our Business pages.
Councillor Kevin Robinson, cabinet member for business, culture and tourism, said: “Helping local businesses that are struggling during this difficult time is a top priority for the Council. We are processing grant applications and making BACS payments as quickly as possible and so far have supported some 2,296 businesses with their relevant business grant.
“It is essential that Southend-on-Sea businesses submit their applications now so we can process their claim and hand over the cash they need. We have written to businesses a number of times and are calling several who we think are eligible but haven’t yet applied.
“We would ask that those filling in the application forms to please include their bank details as this will speed up the process and mean we don’t need to phone them back to request details.”
The Council’s grants team is focusing resource on processing applications, making secure payments as quickly as possible and calling businesses where further information is required; therefore they are unable to provide status updates on individual applications. The Council is keen to reassure business owners that if there is a problem or query with their application then they will be contacted directly.