encourages small rural businesses to apply for government
THE CLA is encouraging rural businesses to apply for
available government grants via their Local Authorities to cope
with the financial impacts of COVID-19. Most Councils have
written to eligible businesses in their area with a request to
verify details in order for them to make appropriate payments.
In light of the Covid-19 pandemic, Government announced it would
provide support for small businesses affected by the Coronavirus
lockdown, and businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure
This support will take the form of two grant funding schemes,
the Small Business Grant Fund and the Retail, Hospitality and
Leisure Grant Fund. Both schemes are delivered by Local Councils. The Small Business Grant is available to all small
The CLA which represents 30,000 landowners, farmers and rural
business across England and Wales is urging owners of rural
businesses to contact their local authorities if they have not
yet had a notification letter from their Local Council,
especially if they feel they are eligible.
In Richmondshire, North Yorkshire, 30% (around 500) of
businesses are yet to apply for these grants. Similarly,
Lancaster City Council has reported that 1,500 businesses are
yet to apply. Northumberland County Council has established a:-
'business hub' which has resulted in it being amongst the top
five Councils in England for the high level of payment support
which, to date, amounts to ₤49million.
CLA Director North Dorothy Fairburn said:- "We recognise
the invaluable support Government has provided to support
businesses throughout this pandemic. We don't want eligible
rural businesses to miss out on these grants as it represents a
lifeline to safeguard such businesses as well as their employees
in future. We appreciate that Local Councils will have their
work cut out in sending out letters to businesses who qualify
for such help, and accept that there would be challenges in the
processing of such applications. We therefore encourage rural
businesses to get in touch with their Local Councils, especially
if they have not heard from them at this time."
CLA members who require help and guidance can contact the North
Regional Office by telephoning:- 01748907070.
The CLA has published a dedicated advisory and information page
(regularly updated) on the Coronavirus; which can be accessed
► Businesses entitled to Small
Business Rate Relief or Rural Rate Relief as at 11 March 2020
are able to receive a grant of ₤10,000.
► Businesses in receipt of a retail
discount under the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant with a
rateable value of less than ₤51,000 are able to receive a grant
of up to ₤10,000, and for those businesses with a rateable value
of greater than ₤15,000, but less than ₤51,000 a grant of
Grants can only be considered in those cases where the property
has a current entry, as at 11 March 2020, in the rating list.
The property therefore must:-
► Have a current rateable value.
► Have a current business rate
► Be paying occupied business rates.
Businesses seeking information should refer to the Government's
business support website:-
Festival Offers Literary Challenge during the Lockdown
WITH gatherings and
events being postponed nationwide at the moment, a Merseyside
town has decided that one aspect of its summer arts festival can
go ahead as planned lockdown or no lockdown. Organisers of the
Prescot Festival of Music and the Arts will press on with their
annual Short Story Competition, and have announced that 'Dreams'
will be this year's theme, opening a world of creative
possibilities to prospective authors. Now in its 9th year,
the writing contest offers a ₤100 prize for the winner. Previous
winning entries have included tales of wedded bliss gone awry, a
whimsical wheelbarrow race with an elderly relative, and a
haunting encounter at Lime Street Station. The contest is open
to all unpublished fiction writers in the 6 boroughs of:-
Knowsley, St Helens, Sefton, Halton, Wirral and Liverpool.
There's a 1,000 upper word limit, but no minimum word count. In a
change to previous years' requirements, submissions are invited
via email rather than by post. The deadline is Friday, 29 May
2020. The full rules are online at:-
Prescot Festival of Music and the Arts was founded in 2005 in
the historic Lancashire town of Prescot, Merseyside. The
organisers continue to keep festival audiences up to date and
occasionally entertained through their official
website, and their
Facebook and Twitter pages.
Council business grants update
WE have been informed that following extensive
communication and engagement, Sefton Council have received 3,100
applications for Business Grants over the last few weeks.
Sefton Council have commented:- "We are pleased to confirm
that all these have been processed and any applications which
are eligible and have yet to receive payment will do so by
Tuesday. 21 April 2020, with funds being received by banks shortly
after. The total value of payments to be made so far now stands
at over ₤20 million. We will now continue to follow up and
resolve any outstanding queries that exist from the original
submissions. Additionally, advice and support to Sefton
businesses will be provided by the team if required. We are
aware that approximately 1,500 (30%) of targeted Sefton
businesses have not yet completed the application process or
made contact with the Council. We will continue to prioritise
the processing of any additional applications from Sefton
businesses. If you are an eligible business within Sefton and
have not yet applied for a business grant, you can apply
For businesses in Sefton, it is worth noting that you can get
further business support and advice at:-
Total UK cases
COVID-19 Cases Update for Liverpool City Region and
THE total recorded
number of confirmed Hospital COVID-19 fatalities was 16,509,
up by 449 on the previous day. The number of laboratory
confirmed COVID-19 infections has risen by 4,676 to 124,743,
according to the UK's Department of Health. Within England,
there are a total of 93,030 confirmed cases. North West has
seen a total of 14,328 confirmed cases. Current confirmed
cases within the following Local Authorities are as
► Liverpool, 1,145 confirmed cases.
► Sefton, 647 confirmed cases.
► Wirral, 788 confirmed cases.
► St. Helens, 478 confirmed cases.
► Halton, 263 confirmed cases.
► Lancashire, 2,096 confirmed cases.
► Cheshire West and Chester, 575 confirmed cases.
► Cheshire East, 604 confirmed cases.
► Manchester, 852 confirmed cases.
► Stockport, 640 confirmed cases.
► Trafford, 464 confirmed cases.
► Wigan, 437 confirmed cases.
► Bolton, 559 confirmed cases.
► Rochdale, 324 confirmed cases.
► Bury, 335 confirmed cases.
► Tameside, 375 confirmed cases.
► Oldham, 462 confirmed cases.
► Blackburn with Darwen, 231 confirmed cases.
These stats are according to Public Health England as of
20/04/2020. Last updated 3:59 pm GMT. Last updated 2:44 pm GMT.. UK total includes cases detected through:-
"Pillar 2" testing (tests carried out by
commercial partners) and therefore does not equate to the
sum of the 4 countries' counts, which only include:-
"Pillar 1" (tests carried out by NHS / PHE /
Devolved Administration Labs).