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Braintree District Council makes grant payments to businesses

Braintree District Council makes grant payments to businesses

"We know that businesses are in desperate need of this cash which is why we’ve been working hard on getting this money paid out as quickly as possible."

Braintree District Council has issued the first 1,394 grants to businesses facing financial difficulties as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic - paying out almost £16 million to struggling businesses so far.

A total of 2,557 grant application forms were sent out to businesses that met the Central Government criteria on Friday, March 27th. Of those, almost 1,600 have returned their applications so far.  Payments will be made within the next 7-10 working days to those applications still being processed.

The authority is offering grants of up to £25,000 to eligible businesses with property in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors. It will also provide a maximum grant of £10,000 to small businesses in receipt of small business rate relief or rural rate relief.

The cash grants for retail, hospitality and leisure extends to shops, restaurants, cafes, pubs, cinemas, music venues, leisure centres, hotels, guest houses and self-catering accommodation, estate and letting agents, betting shops and bingo halls.

Eligible businesses, including those in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors, will also be exempt from paying business rates for the next 12 months.

Businesses not considered essential by the government were recently forced to close to help slow the spread of the coronavirus.

Cllr Tom Cunningham, Cabinet Member for Economic Development and Infrastructure at Braintree District Council, said: “We know that businesses are in desperate need of this cash which is why we’ve been working hard on getting this money paid out as quickly as possible.  The first grants have now gone to over a thousand of our district’s businesses and we are working as fast as we can to process the others. This help is vitally important to help businesses survive and to help them bounce back when this epidemic eventually eases.”

Businesses unsure about their eligibility for these grants can contact the Economic Development team via [email protected] for advice, help and support.