New funding to aid small South Cambridgeshire businesses in COVID-19 recovery

South Cambridgeshire District Council leader Bridget Smith.

South Cambridgeshire District Council leader Bridget Smith. - Credit: Archant

Over 1.25 million in grant funding is now available to help hundreds of small South Cambridgeshire businesses which have not yet been eligible for support to recover from the coronavirus pandemic.

Businesses such as charities, market traders, B&Bs, and those in shared offices or flexible work spaces are invited to apply to the district council as soon as possible for the new funding, by no later than midnight on Monday, June 22.

The one-off payments, which will be given under the government’s discretionary grants scheme, range from £2,500 for small firms, £10,000 for charities and up to £10,000 for other businesses connected to the retail, hospitality and leisure industry. Firms that have already benefitted from previous government grants do not qualify.

South Cambs District Council has introduced a fifth category for businesses not included in the above list, which form part of the supply chain for the retail, hospitality and leisure industry and can demonstrate they have lost a minimum of 75 per cent of their annual income due to coronavirus.

With funding limited, the overriding factor for grant determination will be the number of people employed, and businesses will be advised of decisions after June 22. To qualify businesses must have been trading on March 11, 2020, have a turnover of no more than £10.2 million and employ fewer than 50 people.

Council leader Cllr Bridget Smith said the new funding was designed to ease the immediate challenges for local small businesses.

She said: “These businesses may be small, but they play a vital role in the future of our local and national economy. Collectively they employ significant numbers of people across the generations and we want to help them to continue to trade out of these difficult times, secure jobs and look to a brighter future.

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“If you think your company is eligible for one of these grants, then apply via our website as soon as you possibly can. We know how much of a lifeline this funding could be for businesses who have not been eligible for support so far.”

The council has already handed out over £22m of coronavirus support grants to almost 1,900 local businesses under previous government schemes.