Discretionary grant fund
The discretionary grant fund supports small and micro businesses that are not eligible for other grant schemes that have suffered loss. They must fall outside of the first phase of business support grants made available due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
What you get
You can get a grant of:
- £5,000 for small businesses – you must meet 2 or more of the following requirements:
- Turnover not more than £10.2 million
- Balance sheet total not more than £5.1 million
- Less than 50 employees
- £2,500 for micro businesses – you must meet 2 or more of the following requirements:
- Turnover not more than £632,000
- Balance sheet total not more than £316,000
- Not more than 10 employees
The UK Government has asked us to prioritise the following types of businesses:
- Bed and breakfasts – that pay Council Tax and not business rates
- Small businesses in shared offices or other flexible workspaces – which are not registered for business rates in their own right
- Regular market traders – with fixed building-related costs who currently are not registered for business rates
- Charity properties in receipt of charitable business rates relief – which would otherwise have been eligible for small business rates relief or rural rate relief
Local council discretion
The UK Government has given local councils discretion about how to prioritise this funding.
Businesses eligible for consideration
- Self-employed and sole traders
- Small and micro-businesses that employ less than 50 staff
- Businesses with ongoing commercial fixed property-related costs such as mortgage repayments, licence or leasehold rent, service charges, etc.
- Existing businesses which were actively trading on 11 March 2020
- Small businesses across all business sectors
- Businesses which can demonstrate that they have suffered a significant fall in income due to the coronavirus crisis
- Businesses in receipt of self employment income support scheme
Businesses which have applied for the coronavirus Job retention scheme are also eligible to apply, as are businesses that have furloughed staff.
Businesses not eligible for consideration
- Businesses which have received cash grants from any central Government COVID-19 related scheme are not eligible for funding from the discretionary grants fund. Such grant schemes include but are not limited to:
- Small business grant fund
- Retail, hospitality and leisure grant
- The fisheries response fund
- Domestic seafood supply scheme (DSSS)
- The Zoos support fund
- The dairy hardship fund
- Companies that are, or were on 11 March 2020, in administration, dissolved, in liquidation or where a striking-off notice has been made are not eligible
- Businesses that are part of a national chain are not eligible
- Businesses that are empty and not actively trading
- State aid regulations apply to grant payments under this scheme
Businesses which do not appear on the above list will only be considered once discretionary grants have been awarded to priority businesses and may be subject to the availability of funds.
It is likely that some businesses will not be successful in obtaining a discretionary grant.
Evidence and supporting documents
These lists are not intended to be exhaustive. They give an idea of the type of evidence which we will consider in support of your application.
In all cases:
- 6 months bank statements
- Staff payroll information that proves the number of employees (if applicable)
- Evidence of a significant drop of income due to coronavirus restriction measures
- Evidence of ongoing commercial fixed property-related costs
For bed and breakfasts:
- A copy of planning permission for change of use
- A copy of the fire certificate
- A copy of the commercial TV license or music licence
- A personal and premise alcohol licence (if applicable)
- Registration details from our Environmental Health Officer
For small businesses in shared offices or other flexible workspaces:
- Evidence of 6-month contractual interest in a defined part of larger premises
- Evidence of fixed property costs not exceeding £51,000 per year (minimum £500 per annum)
For self-employed and sole traders:
- A letter from your business accountant
- Your Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR)
- Your HMRC Registration (SA302)
- If self-employed – proof of tax-free childcare
- Charity registration number
- Evidence of charity business rates relief
Market trader costs:
- Evidence of the fixed mandatory market costs including pitch fees, storage, electricity, etc. A letter from your accountant, the town or parish council, market manager, etc.
Types of eligible fixed-property costs:
- Service charges
- Licence or lease charges
- Rental or tenancy agreements
- Storage costs
- Mandatory pitch fees
How to apply
Complete the online form to apply for the discretionary grant and submit the required supporting evidence along with your application. The supporting evidence will help to establish the impact that the coronavirus pandemic has had on the commercial aspect and fixed property-related costs of your business.
Assessing your application
We will start processing applications from Monday 15 June. Closing date for applications is 12 July.
We anticipate a high volume of applications and will try to respond to you as quickly as possible. It is likely we may take up to 15 working days from the applications closing date on 12 July before we respond to you.
It is important the form is completed correctly, and full supporting evidence is provided. The application process will guide you through whether you are eligible to apply for the discretionary grant.
You will need the following information and evidence in order to complete and submit your form:
- Bank statement for 6 months, if available
- Evidence of any existing staff headcount e.g. payroll or HR printout
- Evidence of significant drop of income due to coronavirus restriction measures
- Evidence of ongoing commercial fixed property related costs such as lease, service charge, licence, rental or tenancy agreement, etc.
If the required evidence has not been provided, processing of your application may take longer. We may defer subject to additional information or decline your application.
This is a limited discretionary funding made available to the council and all grant funding decisions are final.
In order to complete your application successfully, you must attach the evidence to accompany your submission. We recommend that you gather this information before you start completing the application form.