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More businesses to benefit from Covid grants

National lockdown: Stay at home. You must not leave your home unless necessary. Find out what you can and cannot do.

More Middlesbrough businesses now have the chance to claim Covid grant scheme support.

The move follows a review of Middlesbrough Council's Additional Restrictions Grant (ARG) scheme.

The discretionary scheme provides essential financial support to businesses that are not eligible for the Local Restrictions Support Grant schemes.

Key enhancements to the ARG scheme include:

  • An extended list of eligible sectors across the main scheme, including sole traders, the self-employed, events-related businesses and businesses in shared spaces.
  • Support for businesses from all sectors who have technically and legitimately fallen outside of the mandatory schemes.
  • Successful applicants will now receive cyclical payments until the end of March 2021 subject to available funds.

To provide further support to those businesses that need to stay fully open and continue to trade, the Council has added a business continuity payment option.

This includes a single payment of up to £15k for businesses that are fully open/trading during lockdown and are liable for their own business rates.

Plus for those Middlesbrough-based businesses with 50+ full time equivalent employees in the same scenario, a job-based bonus payment of up to £25k is also available.

To apply for any of the options in the ARG scheme, businesses will need to provide evidence of high fixed costs and severe impact from Covid-19 restrictions.

Councillor Chris Hobson, Executive Member for Finance and Governance at Middlesbrough Council, said: "The Council has been working tirelessly to support businesses impacted by Covid-19 restrictions.

"Through speaking with hundreds of business owners over the past year, we've seen numerous cases where businesses are in clear need of financial support but are not eligible for one of the main grant schemes.

"Our ARG grant has been designed to provide these businesses with the financial support they need to navigate this incredibly difficult period. I would encourage business owners to check their eligibility on Middlesbrough Council's website."

For more information, including a simple flow chart to see if your business is eligible for support, visit the business support page.