Coronavirus: support for business

Updated 27.10.20 14:25

The Government has confirmed a package of financial measures to support businesses.

Local Restrictions Support Grant: Coronavirus

The Government has announced further funding to support businesses that are required to close due to local restrictions.

Businesses required to close under the local restrictions and eligible to claim the grant are:

  • pubs and bars (unless they serve substantial meals)
  • soft play areas
  • adult gaming centres
  • betting shops
  • bingo halls

This new grant will ONLY apply to businesses that were open as usual before the restriction and paying business rates for the premises as at 14th October 2020.

If you are one of the businesses listed above and wish to claim the grant please apply using the button below.

Apply

If you are successful with your application the payments will be based on the rateable value of your property:

  • If your rateable value is 15,000 or lower you will receive £667 per two-week qualifying restriction period;
  • If your rateable value is over 15,000 and less than 51,000 you will receive £1,000 per two-week qualifying restriction period;
  • If your rateable value is 51,000 or above you will receive £1,500 per two-week qualifying restriction period.

Other funding for businesses has also been made available to the Council. We will share further details with you as soon as possible.

Business rates reliefs 2020/21

100% retail discount

100% retail discount will be awarded to all retail, hospitality and leisure properties (such as museums, live music venues, theatres, gyms and hotels) for the whole of 2020/21, meaning no business rates will be charged.
The following hereditaments that are being used for the provision of the following services will not qualify for the relief:

  • Financial services (e.g. banks, building societies, cash points, bureaux de change, short-term loan providers)
  • Medical services (e.g. vets, dentists, doctors, osteopaths, chiropractors)
  • Professional services (e.g. solicitors, accountants, insurance agents/ financial advisers)
  • Post office sorting offices
  • Not reasonably accessible to visiting members of the public

*The Government has applied to the EU to waive state aid limits that currently apply.

Nursery discount

100% discount will be paid to all premises occupied by providers on Ofsted’s Early Years Register and wholly or mainly used for the provision of the Early Years Foundation Stage and which are subject to business rates in the year 2020/21, meaning that no business rates will be charged.

Additional relief information

Where we can, we will award any relief direct to the account. If you believe you are eligible but have not had the relief awarded to your account, please email us at businessrates@blackburn.gov.uk
You do not need to employ rating agents or other organisations outside of the Council to claim the support that is available. These agents will probably take a percentage of any relief or grant they claim on your behalf. Please be extra careful with what you sign and how you respond to organisations that may contact you offering support.

Cash grant for businesses

The Government grant schemes for small businesses and the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors closed on midnight Friday 28th August 2020.

Recovery

We expect that businesses to maintain their direct debits or payment plans and keep up with their payment plan that is on the bill.
If you are having difficulties paying, you must contact us as soon as possible. To speak to an advisor call 01254 588115 between the hours of 10am and 3pm; alternatively you can email us at businessrates@blackburn.gov.uk
We can check that you are receiving all the discounts and reliefs that you may be entitled to, and discuss payment options with you. We may be able to offer alternative payment dates or extend payments to help you.

If you don't pay

Payments are due on or before the date detailed on your most recent business rates bill. If you do not pay in line with the bill, recovery action will be taken and this may incur further costs.
A reminder notice can be issued at any time after a payment becomes due.
If you fall into arrears again, a final notice will be issued and the full balance of your account will become due, following which, if the amount is not paid in full a Summons will be issued.