Public Health - Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Businesses and employers

In relation to the coronavirus (Covid-19) situation please follow the latest advice from the government - for employees, employers and businesses. This includes updates on grant funding and the full range of other support, including for the self-employed.

Special ‘support finder’ tool

The government has published a special ‘support finder’ tool to help businesses and the self-employed quickly and easily find out what financial support is available.

New government discretionary grant support

Applications are now open for eligible Island businesses to apply for funding under the government’s additional discretionary grant scheme.

The council has been allocated £2.96 million to distribute, specifically to those businesses which missed out under the initial government grant scheme, and which qualify under the new criteria. The council can award grants of £25,000, £10,000 or any sum up to £10,000.

Download guidance for the new scheme and an application form.

Under the new scheme, businesses are required to submit financial and other evidence to support their application. Only businesses which were trading on 11 March 2020 are eligible.

If you have any questions in relation to eligibility and payments for the discretionary grant or other government support please direct your enquiries by email to ecdev@iow.gov.uk 

Payments of grant support for other schemes

Payments of government grant support to qualifying Island business ratepayers for the Small Business Fund and Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Fund are continuing to be distributed by the council. Our Business Rates Team is currently processing these applications as swiftly as they can, so please remain patient while this takes place.

If you think your business qualifies under the criteria for business rates support, please use this online application form for support for businesses affected by Covid-19 (Coronavirus) to provide details so we can process direct payment.

If you have any questions in relation to eligibility and payments for the Small Business Fund and Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Fund please direct your enquiries by email to business.rates@iow.gov.uk 

Support package for businesses

The government has set out a package of temporary measures to support businesses through this period of disruption caused by Covid-19.

This includes:

  • an extended Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme;
  • deferring VAT and Income Tax payments;
  • a Statutory Sick Pay relief package for SMEs;
  • a 12-month business rates holiday for all retail, hospitality and leisure businesses in England;
  • small business grant funding of £10,000 for all business in receipt of small business rate relief or rural rate relief;
  • grant funding of £25,000 for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses with property with a rateable value of more than £15,000 and less than £51,000;
  • grant funding of £10,000 for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses with property with a rateable value of £15,000 and under;
  • an additional discretionary grant scheme for those businesses which missed out under the small business and retail, hospitality and leisure funding schemes;
  • the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme offering loans of up to £5 million for SMEs through the British Business Bank;
  • a new lending facility from the Bank of England to help support liquidity among larger firms, helping them bridge coronavirus disruption to their cash flows through loans;
  • the HMRC Time To Pay Scheme;
  • self-assessment income tax payments that were due in July, can be deferred to the end of January 2021;
  • self-employed people can receive up to £2,500 per month in grants for at least three months;
  • a government-backed Bounce Back Loans scheme for small and medium businesses to borrow between £2,000 and £50,000;
  • a Future Fund providing government loans to UK-based companies ranging from £125,000 to £5 million, subject to at least equal match funding from private investors - the scheme is open for applications until the end of September 2020.

 

General support

Small Business Britain has recently launched ‘The Big Support’ campaign to encourage small businesses to reach out for support during this difficult time. You can get involved and join the online discussion on social media by using #thebigsupport.

 

The resources listed below provide further websites, phonelines and even free chat rooms to attempt to resolve issues and uncertainties that people are facing.

  • Business Support Helpline - Telephone 0300 456 3565 (England), business support and advice directly from the government.

  • Government WhatsApp service – Telephone 07860 064422 a free to use service set up by the government to provide official information and advice about coronavirus.
  • Enterprise Nation - a website providing up to date government information, support schemes and advice for businesses through an online FAQ and live chat service.

  • BT Skills for Tomorrow - helping families, businesses and communities across the UK widen their skills with the use of online courses in a variety of different topics, such as: managing your money, using email, promoting your business, learning how to use LinkedIn and much more.

  • The Institute of Enterprise and Entrepreneurs Business Survival Toolkit - a free to use small business survival toolkit of support and learning resources that will be available for as long as the coronavirus outbreak continues.

 

Funding support

Many businesses will need funding support to help them through this uncertain period. Below is a list of opportunities currently available, including the Rural Business Resilience Fund which is specifically for the Isle of Wight.

 

Innovation funding

There is also funding available for innovative and research-intensive businesses that have been impacted.

  • Grants of between £125,000 and £5 million can be provided to UK businesses in the innovation sector to help protect them from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. For more information, please visit the GOV.UK website.

 

Mental health support

The resources listed below are all free to use and can support you at this very difficult time.

 

Other key advice for businesses

For key advice on other council services affecting your business at this time, please access the relevant information via the links below.

These include areas such as:

  • Licensing (including ensuring licences held by businesses are renewed);

  • Environmental Health (including ensuring your business is following the appropriate regulations if you are now undertaking home deliveries of meals etc);

  • Trading Standards (for advice on product safety, weights and measures or age-related products for home delivery, lockdown rules and regulations);

  • Planning Services (including how the government is relaxing some aspects of planning to help businesses).

 

We will continue to keep this page updated with the latest developments and support, to ensure that your business has access to all the information it needs.

The situation is changing all the time and businesses are also advised to check information on the government website for the latest updates.