Small businesses in the tourism, hospitality and leisure industry could be eligible for support from Swale Borough Council’s second round of discretionary grants.
The second round of the discretionary grants scheme is aimed at those businesses who directly support Swale’s visitor economy and who haven’t yet qualified for any government grants to support them through the impact of COVID-19.
The council has already handed out more than £1 million in discretionary grants designed to help specific types of micro and small businesses who were not eligible for the small business grant scheme or the retail, leisure and hospitality grant schemes offered by the government.
Now that 130 businesses have received their grants, the council is opening the discretionary scheme for a second round.
Cllr Monique Bonney, cabinet member for economy and property at Swale Borough Council, told SFM News: “The government guidelines on who should receive the discretionary grants were very strict in the first round. Now that we’ve helped 130 businesses who fell into the categories of flexible workspaces, market trader’s, B&Bs and charities, we are adding another category for businesses that specifically support our visitor economy. This includes tourism businesses and our hospitality and leisure service providers who are crucial to helping get our local economy going, especially now the summer is here, and lockdown restrictions are easing. We have £400,000 left in the pot to give to eligible businesses and if we have some remaining after this round, we may open the scheme up for a third round to expand the criteria even more. Local businesses are important to the community and we’re doing everything we can to support them. As well as the discretionary grants, we’ve also paid more than £27 million in small business and retail grants.
The grant scheme is open from Wednesday 22nd July for one week only.
Now that the first four categories have received support, a fifth category has been added:
- small businesses in shared premises or other flexible workspaces, e.g. industrial parks, science parks, incubators etc, which do not have their own business rates assessment
- regular market traders who do not have their own business rates assessment
- B&B’s that pay council tax instead of business rates
- charity properties in receipt of charitable business rates relief that could otherwise have been eligible for small business rates relief or rural rate relief
- businesses that directly support Swale’s visitor economy; this can include tourism, hospitality & leisure service providers but does not include sporting activity providers and/or supply chain businesses.
For more information about what help is available for businesses visit www.swale.gov.uk/advice-for-businesses.
Businesses wanting to sign up for updates from the council should email email@example.com.