Funding and Grants Available to help Covid-19 Affected Businesses

Since March when the government announced the initial National Lockdown there have been a raft of support initiatives launched, and many now closed, to support the economy. As furlough winds down over the next few months we thought it might be useful to highlight some of the support still available which you may not have prviously heard of.

SME Recovery Grant

The Government has made £20m of funding available to boost small businesses recovery from the Coronavirus pandemic. Funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) eligible SMEs can access grants of between £1,000 – £3,000 (up to £5,000 in exceptional circumstances) for specialist advice.

The grant is available to help SMEs access one-to-one specialist advice to address their immediate needs. The grant must cover 100% of the cost of the service or product and cannot be used to part-fund expenditure. There is no obligation for businesses to contribute financially as the grant is fully funded.

To be leigible you:

  • Must be an SME (including third sector organisations, social enterprises and trading charities).
  • Need to have been negatively impacted by COVID-19.
  • Must have the ability to survive following the impact of COVID-19.
  • Staff headcount must be below 250 FTE.
  • Must have a balance sheet of below €43million.
  • Must have a turnover of below €50million.
  • If the business has received state aid in the last 3 years the total should not be in excess of €200,000.

To find out more you need contact yoru local LEP, more details and links can be found here.

Peer Networks

Peer Networks is a peer-to-peer networking programme for SMEs that is delivered locally by the network of Growth Hubs across England.

Delivered through a series of virtual high impact group sessions, with a trained facilitator.

The programme includes:

  • Action oriented learning
  • Trained facilitators
  • Small groups
  • Flexible topic selection
  • One to one support

The programme is available to any SME business that has:

  • Operated for at least one year
  • At least five employees
  • A turnover of at least £100,000
  • An aspiration to improve

This initiative will launch in October 2020 and will be completly Free of Charge to all eligible SMEs. More information and to register an interset click here.

Theatre Artists Fund for theatre workers and freelancers

Established with a £500,000 donation from Netflix, the Theatre Artists Fund provides £1,000 grants to theatre workers and freelancers.

To be eligible, applicants must have worked in theatre for at least eight weeks between 1 January 2019 and 31 March 2020.

The first round of applications closed on 13 July. A further round of applications will open, dependent on sufficient funds being available. More information here.

Alpro fund for independent coffee shops

Alpro has launched the In It Together fund to support independent coffee shops. UK businesses with no more than five outlets can apply for a £2,500 grant. More details here.

Facebook small business grants programme

Facebook is offering $100m in grants and advertising credits to 30,000 small businesses around the world. Find out more here.

National Emergencies Trust fund

Smaller charities, not for profit organisations, social enterprises and unregistered community groups can apply for grants of up to £10,000 to help them deliver support to vulnerable groups within their communities. Organisations should contact their local community foundation to apply for funding. You can search for your local foundation here.

Funding for social enterprises

Big Society Capital and its partners have various funding schemes to support social enterprises. More details here.

Theatre Community Fund

This fund is emergency support for freelancers in the UK theatre industry launched by actresses Olivia Colman and Phoebe Waller-Bridge and producer Francesca Moody. Among the donations to the fund is £500,000 from Amazon Prime Video. More details here.

This post is not a comprehensive list of support available, and the business support landscape is changing on a daily basis, however we hope it proves useful to some of our readers and hopefully highlights some of the support available that hasn’t made the national news headlines. We recommend that businesses keep in regular touch with their local Growth Hubs and Trade Press. Here at Burgis & Bullock we are working hard to identify resurces to help our clients  and if you’d like a chat about the options available to your business please use the chat facility on our web site.

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