New Covid Grant for Hospitality and Leisure Businesses

    Thursday, January 13th, 2022 11:34am

    By Philip Churm, Local Democracy Reporter

    Omicron Hospitality and Leisure Grant which recognises the impact that the Omicron variant had over the Christmas and New Year period.   Worth up to £6,000, it is aimed at business which have struggled in what should have been the most profitable time of the year.

    Businesses in the hospitality and leisure sectors, which have been hit by covid, will be able to apply for financial help through local councils.  It follows the government announcement in December that some business could apply for the Omicron Hospitality and Leisure Grant which recognises the impact that the Omicron variant had over the Christmas and New Year period.   Worth up to £6,000, it is aimed at business which have struggled in what should have been the most profitable time of the year. The help is for hospitality, leisure or accommodations sectors which provide in-person services, where the main service and activity takes place in fixed rate-paying premises.   The amount of grant is determined by rateable value on 30 December. Properties with a rateable value of £15,000 or under will receive a one-off grant of £2,667 Properties with a rateable value over £15,000 and less than £51,000 receive £4,000 Properties with a rateable value of exactly £51,000 or over get £6,000. Qualifying businesses in Plymouth can apply on the council’s website from today. Wednesday. Those eligible to apply in the South Hams and West Devon local authority areas have been able to apply since last week.  Plymouth City Council leader Nick Kelly (Conservative, Compton) said: “Our team has worked as quickly as possible to get this latest business grant scheme up-and-running so we can get Plymouth hospitality, leisure and accommodation businesses the financial support that they need. “We’re now working on plans for the discretionary grant scheme as we want to make sure we understand where the support is needed most and how we can make sure the funding available has the best possible impact.” Leader of South Hams District Council, Cllr Judy Pearce (Conservative, Salcombe and Thurlestone) added: “We know that our local hospitality and leisure businesses were counting on a busy trading period in the run-up to Christmas after what has been a year of ups and downs.  “Unfortunately, the Omicron variant threw up more challenges, like cancelled bookings, which have hit many of our businesses hard. “Our business grants team has worked swiftly to set up the processes we need in place to get the money to the right businesses as quickly as possible.” Applying businesses will need to provide details such as their company reference number, VAT registration, unique tax reference etc All businesses need to supply their bank details as well as an image of their bank statement or cheque book if this is their first covid grant from the council or if their bank account details have changed. Eligible sectors are defined as:  Hospitality Including (but not limited to) pubs, restaurants (excluding takeaways), cafés, etc. Leisure Including (but not limited to) tourist attractions, event venues, museums, galleries, theatres, etc. Gyms, personal care, and retail businesses are not included. Accommodation Including (but not limited to) holiday parks, hotels, campsites, etc. Applications for this grant scheme will close on Wednesday 23 February in Plymouth and Monday 28 February in West Devon and South Hams.  Plymouth City Council is aiming to make grant payments to eligible businesses within ten days of application, provided all of the pre-payment checks are met. South Hams and West Devon councils say all grant payments will be made by 31 March and as soon as possible after a completed application form has been received.

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