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Grant funding for non-essential Welsh retail businesses forced to close

Following the announcement of Alert level 4 pandemic restrictions, Welsh Government’s Business Restrictions Fund package of support has been extended to include non-essential retail business forced to close.

As with hospitality businesses in the first round of the ERF Restrictions Business Fund, non-essential retail businesses that were previously registered and received a grant under the firebreak lockdown scheme will be paid directly.

For non-essential retail businesses that did not register under the Firebreak Lockdown scheme, a registration process will be opened in January 2021 and payment made as soon as possible thereafter.

Eligibility for the Business Restrictions Fund is:

  • Hospitality businesses / hospitality not-for-profit organisations and non-essential retail businesses that are in receipt of Small Business Rate Relief (SBRR) and have a rateable value of £12,000 or less will be eligible for a £3,000 payment. Tourism, leisure and supply chain businesses qualifying for SBRR will also be eligible for this support if they have greater than 40% reduction in turnover during the restriction period.
  • Hospitality businesses / hospitality not-for-profit organisations and non-essential retail businesses with a rateable value of between £12,001 and £51,000 will also be eligible for a £5,000 payment if impacted by the restrictions. Tourism, leisure and supply chain businesses in the same rateable value bracket will also be eligible for this support if they have greater than 40% reduction in turnover during the restriction period.
  • An additional measure to previous rounds, Hospitality businesses / hospitality not-for-profit organisations and non-essential retail businesses with a rateable value of between £51,001 and £150,000 will also be eligible for a £5,000 payment if impacted by the restrictions. Tourism, leisure and supply chain businesses in the same rateable value bracket will also be eligible for this support if they have greater than 40% reduction in turnover during the restriction period.

Announcing the Alert level four on Saturday, First Minister Mark Drakeford said: “While we all want to avoid further disruption to businesses and plans for Christmas, our overriding duty is to protect lives here in Wales.

“We know that 2021 will be a different and a better year. Our economy will recover. Christmas will come again. But lives which are lost, are lost for ever.

“This new strain of the virus is another dreadful surprise in this long-running pandemic. We now have a pandemic within a pandemic, a crisis within a crisis.

“It is another challenge we must overcome. But one we will overcome together. We will continue to protect ourselves and our loved ones, and, together, we will keep Wales safe.”

The Leader, Cllr Huw David said: “We are working hard to administer the current Restrictions Business Fund as quickly as possible.

“With the latest developments now meaning that non-essential retail is forced to close, we will be changing our processes to administer the relevant grants as soon as possible in January.”