Cash lifelines going unclaimed

Businesses are missing out on £10,000 coronavirus grants because they don’t realise they’re eligible, the Dorset Chamber has warned. It says that some firms mistakenly believe that the government cash boosts are only for the retail, hospital and leisure sectors.

But companies with a rateable value of under £15,000 that receive some form of rate relief can claim £10,000 from the Small Business Grant Fund whatever sector they are in.

Chamber chief executive Ian Girling said: “This money could make the difference between survival and failure for some businesses. The local authorities are doing a great job at administering the grants and making it as easy as possible yet some firms are not aware of the schemes or are not applying. It may be because they are not tuned into social media or think that they don’t qualify, but the support is there and I would encourage all businesses to seize every penny they are entitled to.”

The Small Business Grant Fund is for all businesses in England in receipt of Small Business Rate Relief or Rural Rate Relief – effectively those with a rateable value of under £15,000. Firms still qualify for the £10,000 grant even if they pay no business rates at all because of rate relief, have temporarily suspended trading due to coronavirus or use premises solely for storage.

Visit the Dorset Council to apply for the £10,000 grant via a one-page form.

Dorset Chamber is also providing a range of support. This includes the Dorset Gateway, delivered by Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) in partnership with Dorset Chamber, which provides free signposting to business advice and support.

Visit the Dorset Chamber website for further business support.