Support for businesses

Government financial support for business

Following COVID-19 restrictions placed on London Borough of Newham from 17 October 2020-12 April 2021, the government has provided the Council with funding for grant payments to support those businesses impacted by the restrictions. The two main grants are:

Local Restrictions Support Grant (LRSG)

Although this grant is now closed there were a number of different grants available, which vary according to changes in tiered restrictions. Please visit our Local Restrictions Support Grant (LRSG) page to see an overview of grants that were made available. 

Additional Restrictions Grant (ARG)

The government recognises that some businesses that were required to close because of COVID-19 do not directly pay business rates and therefore won’t be covered by the Local Restrictions Support Grant (LRSG) scheme and that others will not have been forced to close but will be significantly financially impacted.

Local authorities have therefore each been allocated an Additional Restrictions Grant (ARG), which will cover businesses not covered by LRSG. Funding can cover one or more of the following areas:

  • Direct grants to business
  • Business support e.g. advice and guidance for businesses, and skills training to support their ability to trade in changed circumstances.

A total of £10.1m of ARG has been given to the Council to cover the period up until March 2022. This is a single lump sum and the Council will receive no further amount.  

For more on Additional Restriction Grant, please visit our Additional Restrictions Grant page.

Support grants

For further government guidance on support grants please visit gov.uk.

Further economic support

The government has introduced additional economic and business support measures:

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (also known as the Furlough Scheme) has been extended until 30 September 2021.

From 1 July the level of grant received by businesses from the government has been reduced and employers now have to contribute towards the cost of their furloughed employees’ wages.

To begin with (i.e. July only) businesses are required to contribute 10% of the 80% furlough amount (capped at £312.50 per month) and the government will contribute 70% of this 80% (capped at £2,187.50 per month); the amount which employees receive remains capped at £2,500 per month.

Then in August and September employer contributions will increase to 20% (capped at £625), with the government contributing 60% (capped at £1,875).  

Businesses can continue to top up at their own expense employees' wages above the recommended 80% threshold and £2,500 cap for hours not worked.

Find out more about the scheme

You can visit gov.uk to find information on the following:

  • which employees you can put on furlough to use the coronavirus job retention scheme
  • if you can claim for your employees’ wages using the coronavirus job retention scheme
  • what steps you need to take before calculating your claim
  • find out how much you can claim.

To claim for wages through the scheme see gov.uk

The grants are taxable income and also subject to National Insurance contributions. Find out if you are eligible and how much you can get on gov.uk.

Repay Eat Out to Help Out Scheme payments to avoid a penalty 

Find out how to pay back all or some of the payments your business claimed when taking part in the Eat Out to Help Out Scheme. If you’ve claimed money through this scheme, you can make a repayment if either:

  • You’ve realised that you have been overpaid or were not eligible
  • You do not need the money and want to voluntarily pay it back.

Tax cuts and deferrals

The VAT deferral new payment scheme has now closed.

Businesses that deferred VAT payments due between 20 March 2020 and 30 June 2020 were able to either:

  • pay in full by 31 March 2021
  • join the online payment scheme by 21 June 2021 to spread payments of deferred VAT over smaller, interest free instalments
  • contact HMRC to make an arrangement to pay by 30 June 2021.

Self-assessment taxpayers will be able to benefit from a 12-month ‘Self-Assessment payment plan’ self-service facility. A payment plan allows you to pay your tax charges in instalments.

To be eligible you need to set up an online payment plan:

  • have filed your 2019-20 tax return
  • owe £30,000 or less
  • have no other tax debts
  • have no other HMRC payment plans set up.

You can find out more about this service here.

Loans

Start Up loan for your business

Apply for a government-backed Start Up Loan of £500 to £25,000 to start or grow your business.

Recovery Loan Scheme

(launched on 6 April 2021)

The Recovery Loan Scheme ensures businesses of any size can continue to access loans and other kinds of finance up to £10 million per business once the existing COVID-19 loan schemes close.

Recovery Loan Scheme

The Recovery Loan Scheme ensures businesses of any size can continue to access loans and other kinds of finance up to £10 million per business once the existing COVID-19 loan schemes close, providing support as businesses recover and grow following the disruption of the pandemic and the end of the transition period.

  • The finance can be used for any legitimate business purpose, including growth and investment.
  • The government guarantees 80% of the finance to the lender to ensure they continue to have the confidence to lend to businesses.
  • The scheme launched on 6 April and is open until 31 December.

Renewable energy finance

Newable is a company which offers specialist funding solutions to UK-based SMEs providing, advice on growing a business. 

It provides specialist funding solutions for renewable energy projects such as electric vehicle charging points, agricultural, composting and recycling equipment, LED lighting and solar PV (photovoltaic) systems.

Eviction protection

Resolving commercial rent debts will be key to supporting businesses to plan ahead with certainty and build back better from the pandemic. Measures to protect commercial tenants has been extended until new rules come into force. Commercial tenants remain protected from the risk of eviction and the legislation encourages the tenants and landlords to work together to come to an agreement on how to handle the money owed – this could be done by waiving some of the total amount or agreeing a longer-term repayment plan. Where an agreement cannot be made, the law will ensure a binding arbitration process will be put in place so that both parties can come to a formal agreement. The existing measures in place to protect commercial tenants from eviction will be extended to 25 March 2022. Find out more on gov.uk.

Budget 2021

All Budget 2021 announcements can be found gov.uk.