Local Restrictions Support Grant – Open

Applications for this scheme will close on 31/12/2020

On Thursday 22 October, the Government announced additional funding to support businesses under restrictions in Local COVID Alert Levels 2 and 3. This is support for businesses that are not legally required to close but which are severely impacted by the localised restrictions on socialising put in place to manage coronavirus and save lives. See the announcement on the .gov website [external link].

Darlington was placed in Local COVID Alert Level 2 on 14 October 2020. This lasted for 22 days before the borough was moved to National Lockdown on 5th November 2020. For this time period, financial support is available to business affected by COVID related government restrictions within the leisure, hospitality and accommodation sectors.

In order to be eligible for a grant payment under the LRSG (open) scheme, a business must meet the following criteria:

  • Be in one of the following business categories:
    • Hospitality: Pubs, Bars, Café & Restaurants
    • Hotels, B&B, Self-catering, serviced apartments, Camping and caravan sites and other short-stay accommodation
    • Leisure: Boxing Clubs, Children’s Play Centre, Dance Studios, Gymnasiums, Gymnastics Clubs; Indoor Archery Centre; Indoor Bowling Centre; Riding Centres; Sports Centres, Sports Clubs=
    • Entertainment: Amusement Arcades; Bingo Halls; Cinemas; Escape Rooms; Soft Play Centres; Theatres; Music Venues
  • Be registered as the business rates payer to Darlington Borough Council, for a property entered on the non-domestic rating list as at 13 October 2020.
  • Must have been open as usual, and providing in-person services to customers from their business premises, for the period Darlington was under Tier 2 restrictions. (14th October – 4th November 2020)
  • Demonstrate the adverse impacts of the localised restrictions, such as trading impacts, employee numbers, etc
  • The business was not in administration, liquidation or dissolved at the point the restriction was put into place throughout the award period
  • The business complies with State Aid rules – view State Aid guidance [external link]

In exceptional cases, applications from Hospitality, Accommodation, Leisure and Entertainment sector that do not pay rates and/or have had to close will be considered.

Local Restrictions Support Grant (Open) ceases to apply when the Government imposes national restrictions (such as between 5 November 2020 and 2 December 2020).

How much will you receive?

The Government have provided clear guidance on the value of grants to be awarded. The amount you receive is based on the rateable value of the business premises, which is determined by the Valuation Office Agency.

Darlington was placed in Tier 2 for 22 days. Pro rata, this results in the following maximum grant values:

  • Up to £733.86 for the 22 day period for businesses occupying properties with an RV of £15K or under
  • Up to £1,100 for the 22 day period for businesses occupying properties with an RV over £15K and less than £51K
  • Up to £1,650 for the 22 day period for businesses occupying properties with an RV of exactly £51K or above

If you already receive state aid

The Local Restrictions Support Grant counts towards state aid. Payments count towards the total de minimis State aid you’re allowed to get over a 3-year period - €200,000. If you proceed to make an application we will ask you to complete a declaration confirming that you will not exceed the relevant State aid threshold.

Tax implications

Grant income received by a business is taxable. The Local Restrictions Support Grant will need to be included as income in the tax return of the business.

Applying for a grant

To make an application for support please use the,

Government Grant Support to Business form

You will need your Business Rates payment reference which can be found on the top left hand corner of your most recent bill.

In some cases, additional supporting evidence may be requested, such as a recent bank statement, and/or any other documentation to show impact to complete the application.

Recipients of grant funding must comply with all the scheme conditions, including State Aid requirements and the provision of information to the Local Authority to support monitoring and assurance. By accepting the grant, each recipient confirms that they are eligible for the scheme. If a Local Authority subsequently finds that this self-declaration is incorrect, it will be able to take action and the business would be liable for clawback.

Businesses associated with personal care such as those in the Health and Beauty industry (including hairdressers and tattooists) are not eligible for this grant.

Neither are any other general retail business, personal service providers or garden centres.