Blackpool Council pays out £26m in business support grants to date
Blackpool Council has paid out £26m so far in support grants to more than 2,300 local businesses. The payments have been made to businesses eligible for assistance as part of the Small Business Grants Fund (SBGF) and Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund (RHLGF).
Payments have been made via faster bank payments to eligible businesses across Blackpool. Remaining businesses that have completed a form on the council’s website and are eligible, can expect to receive the grant during the next few days.
The central Government scheme, created and funded by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), is issuing payments of one-off grants to assist businesses affected by the coronavirus pandemic.
Blackpool Council received just over £59m from the Government to support eligible businesses, of which there are approximately 4500 in the town.
Under the Small Business Grants Fund, a one-off grant of £10,000 to businesses eligible for small business rate relief is available. Businesses that receive relief for being in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors are eligible for a payment of either £10,000 or £25,000, based on their rateable value.
Blackpool Council’s Leader, Cllr Simon Blackburn, said: “I’m pleased that we have been able to begin making payments and providing support to business owners in need.
“Since the funding package was announced, the council’s business support teams have been working incredibly hard to assist business owners in both understanding and getting access to the support they require during this difficult time.
“I would like to assure business owners that we are working as fast as we can to pay the grants into bank accounts quickly whilst at the same time checking for potentially fraudulent applications.
“We cannot unfortunately acknowledge receipt of applications but, once authorised, the grant will normally be paid within two to three working days.
“I would urge eligible ratepayers to visit www.blackpool.gov.uk/coronavirus and follow the link in the business support section to submit their bank details which, once checked in accordance with Government guidelines, will allow payment straight into their account.”
Blackpool Council has set up a dedicated helpdesk to support local businesses during this time.
The helpdesk is manned by business support experts working closely with colleagues in the business rates department.
Regular updates on Government support for businesses during the pandemic are available at www.blackpoolunlimited.com/c19business-support