In addition to Government measures to contain the spread of the virus, there are a number of initiatives being established to help support businesses and employers who are impacted.
Below is an outline of these initiatives. As more are added and updated we will update this information for you.
Need support? Speak to our #HereToHelp team on 0151 705 1985.
Additional Restrictions Grant
The Additional Restrictions Grant will be provided by councils on a discretionary basis.
Local authorities will receive a sum of money equivalent to £20 per head of their local population to distribute to businesses which have been severely impacted by restrictions. For example, a council covering an area with a population of 100,000 would receive £2 million for this purpose. Those likely to be in receipt of these grants include large employers with significant fixed costs such as seaside attractions or local manufacturers, as well as sole traders, tour operators and market traders who do not have a rateable value and have not been covered by other grant schemes.
Visit your local council website to find out how to apply.
Find out more here.
Arts Council Support
To support organisations and individuals in the arts, Arts Council England have a suite of COVID-19 support, including guidance, advice and emergency funding measures. This includes their National Lottery Project Grants, which has funding available until April 2021.
Find out more here.
Bounce Back Loan Scheme
The Bounce Back Loan Scheme (BBLS) enables smaller businesses to access finance more quickly during the coronavirus outbreak. The scheme helps small and medium-sized businesses to borrow between £2,000 and up to 25% of their turnover, to a maximum of £50,000.
The government guarantees 100% of the loan and there won’t be any fees or interest to pay for the first 12 months. After 12 months, the interest rate will be 2.5% a year. The scheme is open until 31 January 2021.
Please note that if you already have a Bounce Back Loan but borrowed less than you were entitled to, you can top up your existing loan to your maximum around. You must request the top up by 31 January 2021.
Find out more here.
Business Rates Holiday for Nurseries
Nurseries in England do not have to pay business rates for the 2020-21 tax year. Find out more here.
Business Rates Holiday for Retail, Hospitality and Leisure
Businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors in England will not have to pay business rates for the 2020 to 2021 tax year. Find out more here.
Business Evictions Ban
Business owners affected by the pandemic will be protected from eviction until the end of March 2021.
This final extension to protections from the threat of eviction will give landlords and tenants three months to come to an agreement on unpaid rent. The Government is clear that where businesses can pay any or all of their rent, they should do so.
Find out more here.
Childcare support for working parents
The government is providing support with childcare for working parents who access a Government Covid-19 related support scheme, or a critical worker who has worked extra hours because of the pandemic.
This support includes:
- 30 hours free childcare for 3 and 4 year olds in England
- Tax-free childcare for children up to 11 years old and disabled children up to 17 years old across the UK
Find out more here.
Businesses who are struggling to pay their rent due to the impact of COVID-19 are protected from the threat of eviction until the end of the year in order to help businesses over the coming months and protect people’s jobs. A Code of Practice has also been published by the government to encourage commercial tenant and landlords to work together during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme
The Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme provides financial support to small and medium sized businesses affected by coronavirus (COVID-19).
The scheme helps businesses to access loans and other kind of finance up to £5 million. The government guarantees 80& of the finance to the lender and pays interest and any fees for the first 12 months. The scheme is open until 31 January 2021.
ind out more here.
Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme
The Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS) provides financial support to larger businesses affected by coronavirus (COVID-19).
The scheme helps medium and large sized businesses to access loans and other kinds of finance up to £200 million. The government guarantees 80% of the finance to the lender. The scheme is open to applications until 31 January 2021.
Find out more here.
Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme will remain open until 30 April 2021. From 1 November 2020 you can claim 80% of an employee’s usual salary for hours not worked, up to a maximum of £2,500 per month.
30 November 2020 is the last day employers can submit or change claims for periods ending on or before 31 October 2020.
Claims for furlough days in November 2020 must be submitted by 14 December 2020.
Full details can be found here.
COVID-19 Corporate Financing Facility
Bank of England will buy short term debt from larger companies to help companies that are fundamentally strong, but have been affected by COVID-19. Find out more here.
DIT support for UK businesses trading internationally
The Department for International Trade (DIT) has issued guidance for UK businesses trading internationally. Find out more here.
Enterprise Nation – Recovery Advice for Businesses
The Professional and Business Services Sector and Enterprise Nation, supported by the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy, have teamed up to offer small and medium sized businesses free advice to help them recover from the impact of Coronavirus. This offer will be available until 31 December 2020. Find out more here.
Extensions for filing accounts with Companies House
To relieve the burden on businesses during the COVID-19 outbreak and allow them to focus all their efforts on continuing to operate, measures have been introduced to give companies an extension to their accounts filing deadline.
Any company whose filing deadline falls any time from 27 June 2020 to 5 April 2021 (including these dates) will receive an extension. Please note that this only applies to your original filing deadline, it will not be added to the filing extension already granted by Companies House. Find out more here.
The Future Fund will provide government loans to UK-based companies ranging from £125,000 to £5 million, subject to at least equal match funding from private investors.
These convertible loans may be a suitable option for businesses that rely on equity investment and are unable to access the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme.
The scheme is open for applications until 31 January 2021.
Find out more here.
Guidance for the Charity Sector
The Charity Commission have produced guidance to help running your charity during the outbreak. Read more here.
A dedicated helpline has been set up by HMRC to support businesses and self-employed people in financial distress and and with outstanding tax liabilities to receive support with their tax affairs. Through this, businesses may be able to agree a bespoke Time to Pay arrangement. If you run a business or are self employed you can call HMRC on 08000 241222.
Income Tax Deferral for the Self-Employed
Because of coronavirus, Income Tax payments due in July 2020 can be delayed, and you will not be charged any interest or penalties as long as you pay before 31 January 2021. Find out more here.
You can get help if you cannot pay your tax bill on time here.
The Kickstart scheme provides funding to create new job placements for 16 to 24-year olds on Universal Credit who are at risk of long-term unemployment. Employers of all sizes can apply for funding that covers:
- 100% of the National Minimum Wage (or National Living Wage depending on the age of the participant) for 25 hours per week for a total of 6 months.
- Associated employer National Insurance contributions.
- Employer minimum automatic enrolment contributions.
A Kickstart Scheme application must be for a minimum of 30 job placements. Kickstart gateways can help employers with 29 or less job placements by applying for funding on their behalf.
Find out more here.
Local Connections Fund
The Local Connections Fund – made up of £2 million from the Government and £2 million from The National Lottery Community Fund – will be used for hundreds of small grants worth between £300 and £2,500.
These investments are designed to help local organisations bring people and communities together as the country recovers from the coronavirus pandemic.
The Local Connections Fund will be split into two rounds of funding – each with its own application window, one in January 2021 and one in the summer 2021.
Find out more here.
Local Restrictions Support Grant
The Local Restrictions Support Grants, for businesses which have had to close or have been severely impacted by local restrictions (hospitality, leisure and non-essential retail sectors):
- business owners will receive £1,334 per 4 weeks if they have a rateable value below £15,000
- they will receive £2,000 per 4 weeks if they have a rateable value between £15,000 and £51,000
- they will receive £3,000 per 4 weeks if they have a rateable value above £51,000
Visit your local council’s website to find out how to apply:
Find out more
Lockdown grants to support businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors
A series of one- off top-up grants for businesses in retail, hospitality and leisure.
The one-off top-ups will be granted to closed businesses as follows:
£4,000 for businesses with a rateable value of £15,000 or under
£6,000 for businesses with a rateable value between £15,000 and £51,000
£9,000 for businesses with a rateable value of over £51,000
We will keep you updated as soon as more details are made available on how to apply for the grants.
You can read HM Treasury’s press release here.
In response to the demand for increased support for SMEs, government has committed an additional £30m from the England European Regional Development Fund. £10m to support visitor/ tourism economy and £20m for the wider economy businesses.
Liverpool City Region have the following funding available for grants;
- £283,000 for Visitor/ Tourism economy businesses which equates to approximately 94 grants
- £752,000 for the wider business economy, this equates to approximately 250 grants
More information can be found here.
Self-employment Income Support Scheme
The SEISS provides critical support to the self-employed in the form of 3 further grants, each available for 3-month periods covering November 2020 to January 2021 and February 2021 to April 2021.
The third grant will be calculated at 80% of 3 months average monthly trading profits, paid out in a single instalment and capped at £7,500. This is an increase from the previously announced amount of 55%.
The online service for the next grant will be available from 30 November. HMRC will provide full guidance about claiming and applications in due course.
Find out more here.
Small Business Charter – Small Business Leadership Programme
The Small Business Leadership Programme supports senior leaders to enhance their business’s resilience and recovery from the impact of COVID-19. The fully funded 10 week programme will be delivered online by small business and enterprise experts from world-leading business schools. Find out more here.
Small Business Leadership Programme
The Small Business Leadership Programme supports senior leaders to enhance their business’s resilience and recovery from the impact of COVID-19. It helps small and medium-sized businesses to develop their potential for future growth and productivity.
Participants will develop strategic leadership skills and the confidence to make informed decisions to boost business performance.
The fully-funded 10 week programme will be delivered online by small business and enterprise experts from world-leading business schools.
The Small Business Leadership Programme is being delivered by a consortium of business schools accredited by the Small Business Charter (SBC), and supported by the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy. Find out more here.
Start Up Loans Programme
Loans (£500 to £25,000, at 6% interest, with 1-5y repayment term) and 12 months of free mentoring to individuals who are starting a new business or who have been trading for less than two years. Find out more here.
Statutory Sick Pay Rebate
The Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme will repay employers the Statutory Sick Pay paid to current or former employees.
You can claim back up to 2 weeks of SSP if:
- you have already paid your employee’s sick pay (use the SSP calculator to work out how much to pay)
- you’re claiming for an employee who’s eligible for sick pay due to coronavirus
- you have a PAYE payroll scheme that was created and started on or before 28 February 2020
- you had fewer than 250 employees on 28 February 2020 across all your PAYE payroll schemes
The online service to claim back Statuary Sick Pay is now available.
Find out more here.
The Pension Regulator
The Pension Regulator has published Automatic enrolment and DC pension contributions: COVID-19 guidance for employers. Find out more here.
Trade Credit Reinsurance Scheme
Trade Credit Reinsurance Scheme provides supply chain confidence by ensuring trade credit insurance (TCI) coverage and credit limits are maintained.
Scheme offers guarantees up to £10 billion to TCI schemes for business-to-business transactions, protecting against defaults and payment delays.
Available on a temporary basis for 9 months, backdated to 1 April 2020. Find out more here.
If you deferred VAT between 20 March and 30 June and still have payments to make, you can:
- Pay the deferred VAT in full on or before 31 March 2021.
- Opt in to the VAT deferral new payment scheme when it launches in 2021.
- Contact HMCR if you need more help to pay.
The new VAT deferral scheme means that, instead of paying the full amount by the end of March 2021, you can make up to 11 smaller monthly instalments, interest free. All instalments must be paid by the end of March 2022.
Find out more here.
VAT reduced rate for hospitality, holiday accommodation and attractions
Businesses cab apply a temporary 5% reduced rate of VAT to certain supplies relating to:
- Hotel and holiday accommodation
- Admissions to certain attractions
The temporary reduced rate will apply to supplies that are made between 15 July 2020 and 12 January 2021. Find out more here.
If you are seeking finance from banks and cannot find a suitable lender, there are three online finance platforms designated by Government that can seek out suitable providers. Find out more here.
Growth Platform #HereToHelp helpline
We have created our helpline made up of our dedicated team, ready to support you during this crisis. Call us on: 0151 705 1985
Are you a well-established business to business SME with ambition to grow even more by increasing your turnover or creating new jobs with marketing support?
Agent Accelerator will help you achieve these ambitions!
An ERDF-funded programme led by Agent – a full service marketing agency located in Liverpool’s, Baltic Triangle. People-powered, and values-led, Agent helps brands and businesses to grow, flourish and thrive.
Find out more here
Be the Business Mentoring
2 fully funded programmes to support businesses to survive, thrive and hopefully grow out of this period of uncertainty. Find out more here.
Downtown in Liverpool
DIB is providing businesses with free business support and advice in the Liverpool City Region area via European Regional Development Funding, which provides eligible SMEs with £2,400 worth of free support. DIB can provide you with a minimum of 12 hours of support for any desired outcomes and use it to ensure the growth of your company. Find out more here.
Enterprise Hub supports individuals and businesses across the Liverpool City Region (Liverpool, Sefton, Knowsley, St Helens, Wirral & Halton) to develop their enterprise skills, providing advice and guidance, virtual one to one support, training and access to resources and networks.
They are currently offering remote services to help business adapt through these difficult times.
If you are running a business based in Liverpool City Region that has been registered and trading for 42 months or less, you can receive advice on how to grow your business such as:
- Developing a business growth strategy
- Evaluate your marketing and develop further marketing skills
- Review your finances and access development funds
- Adapting the business to run online
This support is funded and available to any business registered within the Liverpool City Region under 42 month. To find out more contact email@example.com or 0151 706 8113
Gather, a place for the digital, creative and tech community to connect, unite, and grow.
Feel supported. Get advice. Stabilise your business. Find out more here.
Advice for businesses in Halton and resources for Chamber members. Contact on 0333 358 3480 or find out more here.
Information on Halton Borough Council’s response to COVID-19 outbreak. Contact on 0303 333 4300 or find out more here.
High Performance Consultancy
HPC is providing businesses with free HR support and advice in the Liverpool City Region via European Regional Development Funding, which provides SMEs with £2,400 worth of FREE HR and Employment Law advice. HPC will provide you with up to 12 hours of support for any related project you may need or use it to ensure you have everything set up right. Find out more here.
Hospitality, Leisure and Retail Support Grant (Expanded Scheme)
Designed to support businesses that have not been eligible for or received funds from other support grants, including the Liverpool City Region Hospitality and Leisure Grant and the Local Restrictions Support Grant.
Hospitality Relief Package – Ritual ONE
Hospitality businesses in Liverpool can unlock Ritual ONE, a commission-free online ordering tool, for free until the end of January 2021, thanks to Liverpool BID Company and Liverpool Hospitality. This means businesses will be able to reach their customers by offering a variety of ways to order safely, while keeping 100% of their sales. Find out more and how to apply here.
Advice for businesses in Knowsley. Contact 0151 477 4000 or find out more here.
Information on Knowsley Council’s response to the COVID-19 outbreak. Contact freephone freephone 0800 073 0043 from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday and 10am to 2pm at weekends or find out more here.
Liverpool BID Company
Information and news for Liverpool businesses. Find out more here.
Members of Liverpool Chamber are offering advice and support for other members. Find out more here.
Liverpool City Region Combined Authority
Steve Rotheram, Metro Mayor of Liverpool City Region has announced an initial package of measures aimed at easing the Coronavirus burden on local people. Find out more here.
Liverpool Without Walls Hospitality Fund
Liverpool Without Walls, Liverpool BID Company and Liverpool City Council’s project to create outdoor areas for bars and restaurants in the city’s centre to create a “Winter-proof café culture”. Businesses on the pedestrianised areas of Bold Street and Castle Street will be able to add semi-permanent structures and electric heaters to their outdoor seating areas.
The pilot project was launched in July as hospitality venues began to reopen post lockdown. Allowing bars and restaurants to extend their space into the pavement and onto closed roads on Bold Street and Castle Street enabled them to extend their covers while social distancing and mixing regulations remain in place.
Find out more here.
Information for business with particular focus on the Visitor Economy sector. Find out more here.
Information and online events with particular focus on the Maritime sector. Find out more here.
Sector Specific Support
Our Sector Champions have outlined what support is available in specific sectors, we will update this as and when more information becomes available. Find out more here.
Information on Sefton Council’s response to the COVID-19 outbreak. Find out more here.
St Helens Chamber
Advice and support for businesses in St Helens. Contact 01744 742444 or 01744 742087 or find out more here.
St Helens Council
Information on St Helens Council’s response to the COVID-19 outbreak. Find out more here.
The Women’s Organisation
Local Growth Hub partner supporting business in Liverpool City Region. Find out more here.
University of Liverpool
Growth Catalyst is an innovative seven-month leadership development programme designed specifically for owners and senior managers of SMEs in the Liverpool City Region, to help the business grow. The programme is uniquely designed to provide both personal and business growth. Find out more here.
Advice and support for business in Wirral. Contact the support line on 0151 650 6982 or find out more here.
Information on Wirral Council’s response to the COVID-19 outbreak. Contact 0151 666 5050 Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm or find out more here.
General business advice/support
- Beauhurst – Advice for SMEs
- Be the Business – Business advice
- Cabinet Office – Pandemic influzena checklist for businesses to prepare
- Chartered Management Institute – Resource portal for managing teams through coronavirus
- Confederation of British Industry – Coronavirus Hub
- Department for International Trade – Guidance for businesses who export
- DLA Piper Coronavirus Resource Centre
- DSG – Business Advice and updates
- Federation of small businesses – Advice for small business and self employed
- ICAEW – Overview of business support and advice
- Institute of Directors – Business advice
- Law Society – Advice and updates
- Scale Up Institute – Advice for scaling businesses
Advice for employers
- ACAS – Guide for employers
- Be the Business – Guide – how to reduce your workforce in a controlled way
- Chartered Insitute of Public Relations – Tips for communicating with employees
- CIPD – Guidance on how employers should respond
Guidance on government schemes
- Confederation of British Industry – Guidance on the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loans Scheme
- Confederation of British Industry – Job Retention Scheme factsheet
- Deloitte – Overview of Government Support
- Institute of Directors – Job retention scheme factsheet, including what to do if you are the director
- UK Hospitality – Detailed advice and FAQs on Job Retention Scheme
- Federation of Small Business – Guidance for small businessess on creating a businesss continuity plan
- Institute of Directors – Factsheet on business resilience
- UNICEPA – Sign up for daily updates
- British Business Bank – guide to support businesses experiencing financial challenges as a result of COVID-19.
- Companies House – Guidance for filing accounts during the COVID-19 outbreak, including what to do if you cannot file your accounts on time
- Crowdfunder – Free fundraising for businesses during the COVID-19 outbreak
- Financial Reporting Council – advice to companies and auditors on Coronavirus risk disclosures
- Sifted – Advice for Start-ups
- For a list of webinars which may be useful for your business click here.
Although we aim to provide you with the highest quality information, Growth Platform does not endorse or guarantee third party advice. Growth Platform cannot attest to the accuracy of the advice and information offered on third party sites. Linking to a website does not constitute endorsement by Growth Platform.
Cash flow is the lifeblood of your business and is critical to sustaining your business through this difficult period. This tip sheet has been put together to help identify areas which may help you in your efforts to free up cash.
Download our cash flow template here.
Employees are a business’s most valuable assets. This tip sheet has been assembled to help advise, support and manage your staff during this turbulent period.
It is important to remember that people deal with things in different ways. This tip sheet has guidance and advice to support mental health and wellbeing.
The latest guidance from Government to safely return to the workplace during the COVID-19 outbreak.
Government guidance on staying at home
If you have symptoms of COVID-19 however mild, you must self-isolate for at least 10 days from when your symptoms started. You should arrange to have a test to see if you have COVID-19 – go to testing to arrange. Do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital.
If you are not experiencing symptoms but have tested positive for COVID-19 you also must self-isolate for at least 10 days, starting from the day the test was taken. If you develop symptoms during this isolation period, you must restart your 10-day isolation from the day you develop symptoms.
For full details please click here.