Council launches second round of discretionary business support grants

Published: Tuesday, 28th July 2020

Oxford City Council has launched a second round of business support grants. They are aimed at helping small businesses, charities and social enterprises through the coronavirus crisis. Eligible business are urged to apply as soon as possible to avoid missing out on funding.

Supporting small businesses

The Government awarded the City Council £1.419 million to distribute. The grants aim to support small businesses, charities and social enterprises with fixed costs that are struggling due to the coronavirus shutdown, and unable to access other grant funding. Individual grants will range from £1,000 to £10,000, though £25,000 grants are also available in certain circumstances. Around £900,000 remains to be spent in this round.

“This has been, and continues to be, a difficult time for businesses and charities. The City Council wants to make sure Oxford’s businesses get all the help they are entitled to so I urge anyone who believes they may be eligible, to apply as soon as they can and make sure they don’t miss out.”

Cllr Ed Turner, Cabinet Member for Finance and Asset Management  

Eligibility criteria

Grants are issued based on business eligibility, the scale of financial losses and costs, and an assessment of economic, social and environmental impact of applicant businesses. A wide range of small and micro businesses will be eligible in this around, including;

  • occupants of shared offices, flexible workspaces or individual units that do not have their own business rates assessment
  • market or street trading units
  • bed and breakfast establishments that pay council tax instead of business rates
  • charities or social enterprises
  • private language schools that rely on foreign students
  • home-based businesses
  • retail, hospitality and leisure business with a rateable value of over £51,000
  • small or micro workspace and co-working operator businesses with one premise
  • private medical or well-being practices.

Oxford City Council is recommending that applications are submitted as soon as possible and preferably well in advance of the 16 August deadline. The City Council will aim to assess all applications soon after it receives them, with a view to making successful and unsuccessful applicants aware as soon as possible. Payments will be made as soon as possible after checks are completed. The government will close the fund to payments on 28 August 2020.

The closing date for applications is 16 August 2020 with priority given to those businesses with a rateable value below £51,000.

Further information on eligibility is available on the City Council’s Discretionary Grant Fund page and application page.