More businesses affected by Covid-19 to benefit from cash grants

OLDHAM Council is launching new business grant schemes to support those affected by local and national coronavirus restrictions.

They include grants to support leisure, visitor accommodation, non-essential retail and hospitality sector businesses who pay business rates and those who don’t but have fixed property costs.

These businesses will have been open from August and impacted by reduced trade due to the restrictions and disruption that COVID-19 has caused, until they were legally required to close. Eligible businesses will be able to access up to £2,100 per 28-day period.

The council will also be supporting other businesses that don’t pay business rates, like those who operate from shared spaces, and were legally required to close as part of the national lockdown and other restrictions.

These new schemes are in addition to the Local Restrictions Support Grant (Closed) which is in already place for rate-paying businesses which have been legally required to close.

Eligible businesses can receive up to £3,000 per four weeks of closure under this grant – but some have still not claimed the money they are entitled to.

Cllr Abdul Jabbar, Deputy Leader of Oldham Council and Cabinet Member for Finance and Green, said: “We are pleased to launch these additional schemes and will be working hard to process payments as quickly as possible.

“You may be eligible for more than one grant, so please read the information carefully and if you have any questions or need any support in applying, our team is here to help.”

Businesses must apply for the two new grants by December 18 when the schemes will close. There is a limited cash allocation for these grants, but if it’s not spent in full, then the scheme will reopen.

Cllr Jabbar added: “To date, Oldham Council has paid out more than £1.5million in this new round of business grants to over 950 businesses. These additional schemes will see many more benefit, but we know not everyone will be eligible.

“We hope to release details of a further discretionary scheme soon which aims to help more businesses who have struggled to trade as a result of the increased restrictions.”

Businesses that have previously received the Local Restrictions Support Grant (Closed) do not need to fill in an application form for the backdated grants. They will be contacted by the business grants team who will use existing information to streamline the payments process.

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