Local businesses that are being severely impacted by ongoing Covid-19 restrictions can now apply for extra financial support under the second phase of Wokingham Borough Council’s Additional Restrictions Grant (Discretionary) Scheme.
Phase two of the scheme is live and accepting applications up until 2 April 2021; covering businesses that have been affected by the national lockdown and further restrictions that were put in place from 3 December 2020, but that are not eligible for a mandatory grant.
Businesses can check which grant best meets their circumstances and make an application on the Council’s website.
The grants will be administered in monthly cycles of £1,500, and there will also be a one-off discretionary grant of £2,000 available to successful applicants (this will not require an additional application and will be automatically awarded).
There have been over 400 applications for these grants so far, with 100 grants already paid out, and the Council is encouraging more eligible businesses to come forward and claim financial support.
Supporting as much as possible
Cllr Stuart Munro, executive member for business and economic development, says: “We recognise that this is a very challenging times for businesses of all sizes, and the information can often be hard to understand and digest. We are here to support as much as possible and are proactively contacting local businesses to make them aware of the financial help that is available.
“Alongside this, if a business applies for one grant but isn’t suitable, rather than simply rejecting them we will look to see whether we can move them onto another scheme. Please check our website for more information or contact us so we can discuss your options.”
Wide range of grants
Since the start of the pandemic, the Council has worked hard to make access to the wide range of grants from Central Government, as simple as possible.
In the first national lockdown, it paid out £22m in mandatory and discretionary grants, and around £17m in relief grants; while the second national lockdown and run-up to Christmas saw it pay out nearly £1m in grants to businesses that had been forced to close, or that were severely impacted by the restrictions.
The team are already looking at options for future phases of discretionary grants, and other support projects, and look forward to sharing further information as and when it becomes available.
We are here for you
“The current national restrictions are helping to bring Covid-19 rates down, and it is hoped that this will eventually mean businesses can start to open up again in the coming months”, says Cllr Stuart Munro.
“Throughout the year, we will continue to support local businesses as best we can and signpost to further information and advice wherever appropriate. We are here for businesses as much as possible and would always encourage any business – however big or small, to get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.”
Find out more about all the grants available on Wokingham Borough Council’s website.