government support

Last updated: 12/05/2020

find the latest information about the government support measures

The below provides more detailed information about the measures the Government has implemented to support businesses. You can always find the latest detail here or use this support finder to quickly identify what is available to you.

A link to read some of the key national statements made by the Government can be found below:

10th May 2020 // 16th April 2020 // 23rd March 2020 // 20th March 2020


cash grants

The Government have introduced two types of cash grants:

1. Retail, Hospitality and Leisure businesses with a rateable value up to £51,000 will recieve a £25,000 

2. Any business receive Small Business Rates Relief with a rateable value below £15,000 will receive £10,000.

In Southend you must complete an application form from the council in order to receive this grant.

CLICK HERE to apply for your grant from Southend Borough Council

A discretionary Top Up Fund has also been announced for certain businesses that did not benefit from grants 1 and 2. (above).  Details yet to be confirmed.

job retention

Under the COVID-19 Job Retention Scheme HMRC will reimburse a business 80% of an employees wages up to the value of £2,500 per month. 

Employees must have been on your PAYE payroll on or before 19th March. Or if they have stopped working for you before that date but were on your payroll as of 28th February then you can reemploy them so they can be furloughed.

Until the end of July - workers cannot have undertaken any work for, or on behalf, of the organisation whilst furloughed.

August onwards - workers will be able to return to work part-time with employers being asked to pay a percentage towards the salaries of their furloughed staff.

Applications for reimbursement launched on Monday 20th April and the scheme has now been extended until 31st October.

CLICK HERE to claim and read more. Latest release info HERE.


All Retail, Hospitality and Leisure businesses will pay no rates for the 2020-2021 tax year.


No action is required from you.  This will automatically apply to properties that are wholly or mainly being used as:

o As a shop, restaurant, café, drinking establishment, cinema or live music venue.

o For assembly and leisure.

o As a hotel, guest house, boarding premises or self catering accommodation.

CLICK HERE to check if your business falls into the categories mentioned above.


Businesses unable to pay their full rent during this pandemic will be protected from aggressive debt recovery practices. and eviction.

The Government have temporarily banned the use of statutory demands (made between 1st March and 30th June) and winding up petitions (presented between 27th April and 30th June).

Tenants must pay rent in the cases where they can afford it. All tenants will still be liable for the rent missed.


CLICK HERE to find out more.


The Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme  (CBIL) provides support to small and medium sized businesses through access to loans, overdrafts, invoice finance and asset finance of up to £5 million and for up to 6 years.


The Government will provide lenders with a guarantee of 80% on each loan which can be delivered through one of 40 acredited lenders including all the major banks.


Applications are now open for you to discuss your business plan with one of the lenders. You can find out the best way to contact them on their websites.


CLICK HERE to find out more.

bounce back loan

As an extension to the CBIL package, small businesses can benefit from the new fast track scheme providing loans between £2,000 and £50,000 with access to the cash within days.

These loans are 100% Government backed and are interest free for the first 12 months. These scheme are available through a list of acredited lender and are designed for small businesses that need an immediate cash injection to survive. 

CLICK HERE to read more.


All businesses and those that are self-employed can access support with their tax affairs through the HMRCs hotline on 0800 0159 559.


Businesses may be able to make arrangement with HMRC if they are having difficulty paying outstanding tax liabilities. They may also waive late payment penalties and interest but each arrangements will be agreed on a case by case basis.


CLICK HERE to read more.


This is available to larger firms and involves the purchasing of short term debt by the Bank of England to allow your business to finance short term liabilities.


All non-financial companies that meet the criteria set out on the Bank of England’s website are eligible.


CLICK HERE to find out more.

vat payments

Businesses are able to defer paying their first quarter VAT payments until the end of the financial year (31st March 2021). due between 20th March and 30th June 2020.

If you can pay the VAT on the due date as normal then you are able to do so.

income tax

Payments of Income Tax Self Assessment are due on 31 July but payment can be deferred until 31 January 2021. 


This is an automatic offer with no applications required.  No penalties or interest for late payment will be charged if you defer.

If you can make payment on the due date as normal then you should do so.

The Government also has a Business Support Helpline:

0300 456 3565 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 6pm)

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