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Omicron business support funding

The Government has announced new funding to support businesses affected by the Omicron variant of Covid-19.

This support includes:

  • One-off grants of up to £6,000 for qualifying businesses in the hospitality and leisure sectors.
  • New Additional Restrictions Grant (ARG) funding for other businesses impacted by Omicron – such as those who supply the hospitality and leisure sectors. It will be up to our discretion to allocate this funding to businesses most in need but as with previous ARG funding allocations.

Omicron Hospitality and Leisure Grant

The Omicron Hospitality and Leisure Grant will only be available to the business or person that is liable for business rates for a property. The business must have been in occupation of the premises on 30th December 2021 and must be providing in-person services from the premises.

The Government has provided broad definitions for the type of businesses that will qualify and these are:

Hospitality

A hospitality business is one which provides a venue for the consumption and sale of food and drink. The business must mainly be providing food and/or drink to be consumed on the premises, including outdoors, and must be providing food and drink services to the general public. Food kiosks and businesses whose main service is takeaway sales will not be eligible for the grant. For example a restaurant which allows diners to eat in but also has drive thru and take away services would only be eligible for the grant if the majority of its sales were made to people who consume their food and drink on the premises.

The type of businesses that will qualify include

  • Food courts
  • Public houses/pub restaurants
  • Restaurants
  • Roadside Restaurants
  • Wine bars
  • Cafes

Leisure

A business that provides opportunities, experiences, and facilities, in particular for culture, recreation, entertainment, celebratory events and nights out. The definition will exclude all retail businesses, coach tour operators and tour operators.

The type of businesses that can be supported will include:

  • Casinos and gambling clubs
  • Cinemas Museums and art galleries
  • Stately homes and historic houses
  • Theatres Zoos and safari parks
  • Amusement parks
  • Wedding venues
  • Events venues
  • Night clubs and discotheques
  • Arenas
  • Concert halls
  • Tourist attractions
  • Theme parks
  • Amusement arcades
  • Soft play centres or areas
  • Indoor riding centres
  • Clubs and institutions
  • Village halls and scout huts
  • Cadet huts, etc.

Government has stated that gyms and sports businesses will not be eligible for the grant.

Gyms and Sports businesses are those where physical exercise or training is conducted on an individual or groups basis. This includes dance and fitness studios; sports centres and clubs; sports courts; swimming pools and golf courses.

Gym and Sports business will not be eligible for the Omicron Grant, but can make an application for the discretionary additional restrictions grant fund.


Accommodation

Accommodation businesses are those whose main lodging provision is used for holiday, travel or other purposes. Accommodation will exclude private dwellings, education accommodation, residential homes, care homes, residential family centres and beach huts. The types of business that will be supported includes:

  • Caravan parks
  • Caravan sites and pitches
  • Chalet parks
  • Coaching inns
  • Country house hotels
  • Guest houses
  • Hostels
  • Hotels
  • Lodge Holiday apartments
  • Cottages or bungalows
  • Campsites
  • Boarding houses
  • Canal boats or other vessels
  • B&Bs
  • Catered holiday homes
  • Holiday homes

Amount of Grant

The amount of grant will be based on the rateable value of your property and the relevant grant will be:

  • For a property with a rateable value of £15,000 or less - £2,667
  • For a property with a rateable value between £15,001 and £50,999 - £4,000
  • For a property with a rateable value of £51,000 or more - £6,000

You will be able to claim a grant for each individual property that meets the qualifying criteria.


Subsidy Limitations

You are only eligible to claim grants up to a maximum subsidy level and will be required to declare that your application for support will not exceed the subsidy limits.

There are three subsidy allowances for Covid-19 business grant schemes these are:

  • Small Amounts of Financial Assistance Allowance – you’re allowed up to £335,000 (subject to exchange rates) in Small Amounts of Financial Assistance over any rolling period of 3 financial years
  • COVID-19 Business Grant Allowance – under this allowance you’re allowed up to £1,900,000 across all COVID-19 Business Grant schemes
  • COVID-19 Business Grant Special Allowance - if you have reached your limits under the Small Amounts of Financial Assistance Allowance and COVID-19 Business Grant Allowance, you may be able to access a further allowance of funding under these scheme rules of up to £10,000,000 across all COVID-19 Business Grant schemes.

Grants under these 3 allowances can be combined for a potential total allowance of up to £12,235,000, you will need to consider all the grants and financial assistance you have received overt the previous three financial years and declare which allowance is applicable to your application.


Application Process

The application process for the Grant is now open and will close on 15th March 2022. Please be aware it can take up to 10 working days to process your application.

It is important that all applicants read the guidelines before completing their application

Please note you will need to know your business rates property reference number in order to complete your application, this number is located on your business rates bill.

We ask that all applicants also provide their business rates account reference number as this will speed up payments to all applicants.

Check if you're eligible for the Omicron Hospitality and Leisure Grant - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

Applications must be made on line at www.grantapproval.co.uk

If your property reference number cannot be identified or you have any other query relating to the Grant, please email BusinessGrants@bromsgroveandredditch.gov.uk

Your application must be made by 15th March 2022. We will require supporting evidence to enable the payment of your grant, if the evidence is not provided then this will delay payment.

Government has provided a deadline for making payments of 31st March 2022. If you do not provide the evidence requested, or you fail to provide answers to any of the questions in the application form then this may delay payment of your grant, and if this delay extends beyond 31st March then we will be unable to make a payment to you.

Additional Restrictions Grant (Omicron discretionary funding scheme)

The Additional Restrictions Grant provides support to businesses severely impacted by coronavirus restrictions and to businesses impacted by the rise of the Omicron Variant. These may include, but are not limited to: hospitality, accommodation, leisure, personal care, the travel and tourism sector, including group travel, travel agents and tour operators, coach operators, wedding industries, nightclubs, theatres, events industries, wholesalers, English language schools, breweries, freelance and mobile businesses (including caterers, events, hair, beauty and wedding related businesses), gyms, and other businesses that may have not received other grant funding. The grant is paid as follows:

For hospitality businesses eligible for the Omicron Hospitality and Leisure Grant:

  • For businesses with a rateable value of up to £15,000 or less- £1,401
  • For businesses with a rateable value of between £15,001 and £50,999 - £2,100
  • For business with a rateable value of £51,000 or more - £3,150

For other business not eligible for the Omicron Hospitality and Leisure Grant a payment:

  • For a property with a rateable value of £15,000 or less - £2,667
  • For a property with a rateable value between £15,001 and £50,999 - £4,000
  • For a property with a rateable value of £51,000 or more - £6,000

Funding for this scheme is limited and grants will be assessed on a first come, first served basis and in line with the criteria set out above. Once the funding has been fully allocated, the grant scheme will close to new applications.

Where it is identified that surplus funding may remain unspent, the Council reserves the right to amend the eligibility criteria of the scheme.

We are now accepting applications. To make your application go to www.grantapproval.co.uk. Applications will close on 28th February 2022.

Please select the ‘Grants For Businesses' option and click 'Register' to create an account. When applying, please ensure you choose the specific grant application that relates to your business. The application process will close when the funding has been fully allocated. This date may be revised subject to future announcements in relation to further local and/or national restrictions.