In response to the impact the coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions are having on businesses, the government announced an emergency support package.

It includes a business rates holiday for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses in England for the 2020 to 2021 tax year, which has also been extended to non-local authority providers of childcare. Eligible businesses do not need to do anything to receive this support. Lichfield District Council is processing it and will send out replacement bills to all the businesses that are eligible for 100% off their bills.

Further support is also being offered in the form of two grants, which Lichfield District Council will administer for its local businesses.

The first is a small business grant of £10,000 for businesses that had already qualified for small business rate relief or rural rate relief.

The second is a retail, hospitality and leisure business grant of up to £25,000 for businesses that have a premises of a rateable value of less than £51,000, and are eligible for the business rate holiday under the extended retail discount scheme.

Businesses with a rateable value of up to £15,000 will receive £10,000. Businesses with a rateable value of between £15,001 and £50,999 will receive £25,000.

The council will be making contact with eligible businesses over the coming days by email and post to request the information that will enable it to make the payments.

Please be aware the letters will be sent to business addresses. This means if you are away from your business at the moment, and think you may be eligible for a grant, please email economicdevelopment@lichfielddc.gov.uk so the request for information can be provided to you.

Councillor Iain Eadie, Cabinet Member for Investment, Economic Growth & Tourism, said: “We have a thriving business community here in Lichfield District, and ​I hope the support from government will help our retail, hospitality and leisure businesses through these difficult times.

“We are working to get the letters and emails out to all our local businesses that are eligible for the grants, so we can pay them into their accounts as soon as possible. If you think you may be eligible for a grant, and will not be visiting your business premises over the coming week, please email the team so we can send you the request for more information.”

To find out more, including the full eligibility criteria for the grants, please visit www.lichfielddc.gov.uk/supportingbusiness.