There’s still time to apply for a business support grant

Published: Friday, 7th August 2020

There’s still time to apply for a grant as part of the second round of business support grants aimed at helping small businesses, charities and social enterprises through the coronavirus crisis.

The deadline for applications is 16 August 2020, but the advice is not to wait until the last minute to apply.

The business support grant is administered by the Council on behalf of the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and aims to support local businesses through the financial issues caused by the current coronavirus.

Eligibility for the grants has been widened over the first round of funding to now include several new groups. First round applicants may also be eligible for further support if they received less than £25,000 in first round, though businesses that have already had a Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Business grant are not eligible.

One business that has already benefited from a discretionary grant of £10,000 is Visit Oxford Tours Ltd, which offer walking tours of Oxford.

“We have been severely impacted by the reduction in tourists to the city centre.

“The business adds value and colour to the tourism trade. Visit Oxford Tours Ltd is an online business. Like nearly all tour operators, we do not own premises. We meet up with our customers on Broad Street. This meant we couldn’t benefit from either a Small Business Grant or a Retail Hospitality and Leisure Grant as they were targeted at enterprises that paid Business Rates.”

Company Director, Alasdair de Voil

As the Discretionary Grant Fund was launched to assist such non-traditional styled businesses coronavirus recession, Oxford City Council was delighted to be able to award the £10,000 grant.

“This discretionary grant aims to help businesses who have suffered because of the coronavirus but who have not had access to other grant funding. Getting an application in on time is the key to making sure businesses can get the grant they need and deserve, so I’m urging anyone who thinks they may fit the criteria to apply now.”

Cllr Ed Turner, Cabinet Member for Finance and Asset Management. 

Businesses set to benefit from the second round include:

  • shared offices, flexible workspace 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 premises
  • private medical or well-being practices.