Coronavirus: £56m in grants paid to over 4,800 Shropshire businesses
Shropshire Council has now paid £56.32m to 4,825 businesses affected by the coronavirus pandemic, since grant applications opened on 1 April 2020.
The council is working hard to ensure that all eligible businesses receive their payments as soon as possible, and is urging any businesses that haven’t yet applied for this funding to do so as soon as possible.
The council has received £91m of funding from the Government to pass directly onto local businesses affected by the pandemic.
Shropshire’s small businesses, and businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors, can apply for Government funding through the Coronavirus COVID-19 Small Business Grant Fund, and Retail Hospitality & Leisure Grant Fund. Businesses must be business rate payers to apply.
As of this morning (Thursday 30 April 2020), Shropshire Council has paid:
• 3,939 Small Business Grant applications, totalling £39.39m – which represents 69% of applications received.
• 886 Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant applications, totalling £16.93m – which represents 60% of applications received.
Shropshire Council has also awarded the enhanced retail, hospitality and leisure relief to over 2,000 eligible businesses. Those businesses that qualify for this have been notified, and where there is no balance to pay there is no need for businesses to cancel direct debits, as the council won’t be requesting a payment. Any resulting credits on accounts are being refunded.
Steve Charmley, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for assets, economic growth and regeneration, said:
“We’ve assured businesses that we would be working as fast as we possibly can to process these applications, and I hope these figures show that we are doing just that. This is a huge task as only 13 out of the 314 local authorities in the whole country have more grants to pay out than we do.
“Each application is being assessed in line with Government criteria, and unfortunately there are some businesses that have applied but don’t qualify for funding. We’re contacting each of these individually to explain why their application has been unsuccessful.
“We ask businesses to bear with us as we are doing appropriate checks and balances and – to help us – please provide accurate information on application forms and when asked to supply additional evidence.
“If any businesses haven’t yet applied for this funding, I urge them to do so as soon as possible.”
To read the eligibility criteria and to apply, visit the Shropshire Council website.
As of 23 April, Shropshire Council had paid just over £42m to 3,600 Shropshire businesses affected by the coronavirus pandemic.
Some of the positive feedback received from local businesses that have received funding includes:
• “Thanks again for the speedy grant release to my business in Shrewsbury. This will go to good use powering us forward in these uncertain times.”
• “Thank you for processing my business grant so quickly it is much appreciated in these trying times.”
• “I just want to thank you so much for your fast efficient response. This is a business saver.”
• “Very grateful for all the authority is doing to process grant payments.”
• “I would like to thank you so much for my business grant, without this I would really of been struggling to continue with my business, I now have faith that we can continue as a company. Thank you once again.”
• “Can you thank the team from me, for all the advice and support they gave me last week. Also I really appreciated what you did for me getting someone to check my application, considering the amount you have took on this was going above and beyond.”
• “We are very appreciative of this, with 22 staff relying on us, this support is vital – thanks.”
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