Financial scheme information
Grants for businesses
Heart of the South West Growth Hub
Businesses should visit the Heart of the South West Growth Hub for advice and information on any financial support, including details of the Government schemes for businesses and the self-employed.
Local Restrictions Support Grant
The Government has announced funding schemes to support certain businesses during times of national restrictions or local restrictions.
The District Councils in Somerset are administering the Local Restrictions Support Grant for businesses forced to close during the current national lockdown. Please check with your local district council on what grants are available and how to apply.
You can also find government information about support for affected businesses here: Check if you’re eligible for the coronavirus Local Restrictions Support Grant (for closed businesses)
A £750m package has been announced to keep struggling charities afloat during the coronavirus pandemic.
Cash grants will be given directly to charities providing key services during the crisis. As part of the scheme, £360m will be directly allocated by government departments to those charities. Another £370m will go to small local charities, including those delivering food and essential medicines and providing financial advice.
You can find out more here
Job Retention Scheme
Under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, all UK employers with a PAYE scheme will be able to access support to continue paying part of their employees’ salary for those that would otherwise have been laid off during this crisis. This applies to employees who have been asked to stop working, but who are being kept on the pay roll. HMRC will reimburse 80% of their wages, up to £2,500 per month.
Extension of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme – The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) will remain open until 31 March 2021.
Claims relating to periods ending on or before 31 October 2020 are not part of this extension. For claims on or before this date check the existing guidance for more information.
Businesses who deferred VAT due from 20 March to 30 June 2020 will now have the option to pay in smaller payments over a longer period. You can find out more here.
Business Interruption Loan Scheme
Charities and voluntary organisations that are hit financially by coronavirus will only be able to apply for government loans if more than half their income comes from trading activity. You can find out more here.
Expanded Retail Discount Scheme
Offers 100% business rates reliefs to businesses in the retail sector, in 2020/21, regardless of their rateable value. You can see full details here. Please note that local authorities will be rebilling charities in some cases having already issued a rates bill before the Scheme was announced. You can find out more on business rates holiday for retail hospitality and leisure here.
Other Funding, Information and Assistance
A local infrastructure charity for the VCSE, providing information, support and guidance to charities across the county and supporting the coordination of volunteers as part of Coronavirus (COVID-19) response.
This website is updated daily, as they are receiving information directly from the government, the Charities Commission and numerous national umbrella organisations.
They also have a direct link from the website to national sources such as NCVO, ensuring that users can access the very latest guidance. You can find out more on the Spark Somerset website
Somerset Community Foundation
Have launched the Somerset Coronavirus Appeal. The funds raised by this appeal will help form the Somerset Coronavirus Response and Recovery Fund, ensuring support swiftly reaches local charities and community organisations across the county of Somerset. Grants from the Fund will be made on a rolling basis beginning as soon as funds become available. Details of the funding criteria can be found on the Somerset Community Appeal webpage.
Arts Council England Emergency Funding
£160 million of emergency funding is being made available for organisations and individuals who need it during the Covid-19 crisis. They have also changed the funding requirements for those currently in receipt of funding, to help alleviate pressure on them.
You can find out more here
Support and advice
Free information, support and advice for those needing help during Covid 19 can be obtained from:
Guidance to help manage financial difficulties in your charity caused by coronavirus
Many charity trustees are having to cope with serious financial challenges during Covid 19 that will have a major effect on their charities and those who depend on them. The government has therefore put together some guidance and practical steps for trustees, especially at smaller charities, who may need help facing difficult situations or decisions. You can find it here
Guidance for the Charity Sector
Find guidance to help with running your charity during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak here.
Enabling safe and effective volunteering during coronavirus (COVID-19) – This guidance aims to help organisations and groups understand how to safely and effectively involve volunteers during the pandemic.
Heart of the South West Growth Hub
You can also find free support, advice and information on sources of finance, along with assistance on working from home through your local Heart of the South West Growth Hub.
HMRC Covid Helpline
HMRC have additional helplines, including one set up to support voluntary organisations concerned about not being able to pay their tax due to coronavirus on 0800 0159 559. You can find more details about contacting HMRC here.
The charity Mind provide advice on how to support your mental wellbeing during this difficult period. The Mind website includes practical advice on coping with staying at home and updates on how the new coronavirus laws could affect your rights. There is also useful information for any young person who is currently struggling.
Contact the debt charity Step Change to get expert debt advice and fee-free debt management to help you tackle your debts.
You can find out more on their website or phone 0800 138 1111
Business Coronavirus Support Finder
The government has launched a Business Coronavirus Support Finder to quickly help businesses determine what financial support is available for themselves or their business.