Coronavirus (COVID-19) support is available to employers and the self-employed. You may be eligible for loans, tax relief and cash grants. Use this simple business support finder to see what support is available for you and your business. START HERE
We know that many of you are facing some of your toughest challenges ever and it’s new for all of us. However, we want to reassure you that the council, Kingston First and Kingston Chamber of Commerce are all working together to make sure we’re providing you with clear, timely and consistent updates to reduce some of the stress and uncertainty.
The new Kickstart Scheme has launched, creating 6-month work placements aimed at young people (aged 16 to 24) who are on Universal Credit and are deemed to be at risk of long term unemployment.
Funding is available for each job to cover 100% of the relevant National Minimum Wage for 25 hours a week, plus the associated employer National Insurance contributions and employer minimum automatic enrolment contributions. There is also £1,500 per job placement available for setup costs, support and training. Find out more here.
Direct applications must be for a minimum of 30 job placements. If a single employer cannot provide this many job placements, they can join a group of other employers and nominating a representative or gateway organisation for the group to submit the application or register their interest with a representative body who will apply for them.
The Chamber will operate as a gateway organisation. If you have less than 30 placements to offer and are interested in making a joint bid via the Chamber Register your interest here
The Chancellor of the Exchequer has announced the extension to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS), also known as the ‘furlough scheme’, to the end 30th September 2021.
At the Budget it was confirmed that the fourth SEISS grant will be set at 80% of 3 months’ average trading profits, paid out in a single instalment, capped at £7,500. The fourth grant will take into account 2019 to 2020 tax returns and will be open to those who became self-employed in tax year 2019 to 2020. The rest of the eligibility criteria remain unchanged.
Your eligibility for the scheme will now be based on your submitted 2019 to 2020 tax return. This may also affect the amount of the fourth grant which could be higher or lower than previous grants you may have received. Read More
Local restrictions grants for businesses – A range of grants are available to support businesses in the borough, you can find more details of what is available here.
The Business Restrictions Hardship Grant is now open for applications. This fund will initially support small independent businesses (less than 50 employees) in sectors most impacted by restrictions and closures, that have not been covered by support. This new grant will be in addition to the grants already available. Read all of the information about local grant support on this page. Read more here
High Streets Recovery Fund.
£250,000 is available across Tolworth, Chessington/Hook, New Malden, Surbiton and Kingston town centres.
We’re seeking proposals that are large enough to have an impact on the high street, their trading environment and its role they play for their communities. Projects that are likely to cost between £5000 and £50,000 are preferred, but all ideas will be assessed on their merit and impact. Proposals can be for one impactful initiative or a package that brings impact as a whole. Read more here
The Recovery Loan Scheme aims to support access to finance for UK businesses as they grow and recover from the disruption of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Up to £10 million is available per business. The actual amount offered and the terms are at the discretion of participating lenders.
The government guarantees 80% of the finance to the lender. As the borrower, you are always 100% liable for the debt.
The scheme is open until 31 December 2021, subject to review. Loans are available through a network of accredited lenders, listed on the British Business Bank’s website. Read more
Working safely guidance has been updated to include changes to national restrictions. Other specific changes include:
• The visitor economy and Hotels and other guest accommodation guidance has been updated to include information on reasonable adjustments, changes to NHS Test and Trace regulations.
• Providers of grassroots sport and sport facilities guidance has been updated to include information on reasonable adjustments, changes to NHS Test and Trace regulations, as well as a new shorter format focussing on actions to make your workplace COVID-Secure.
• Shops and branches guidance includes additional information on ventilation, tests, how to operate fitting rooms safely and new requirements for collecting data for NHS Test and Trace (betting shops only).
• Performing arts and Heritage locations guidance is updated in a new shorter format focussing on actions to make your workplace COVID-Secure.
• Vehicles guidance has been updated with information on ventilation and tests.
• Supported living services guidance has been updated with a new ‘Visits in and out of supported living settings’ section.
• Care homes free COVID-19 PPE provision for health and social workers has been extended to March 2022.
Maintaining records of staff, customers and visitors to support NHS Test and Trace: Guidance has been updated to reflect the change in rules for when a group enters a venue. From 29 March 2021, every customer or visitor should be asked to scan the NHS QR code or provide their name and contact details, not just a lead member.