Pandemic business support scheme extended

Last Updated: 23 August 2022

Firms in South Lakeland which missed out on a recent pandemic business rates relief scheme are being given another bite of the cherry.

South Lakeland District Council has £2,109,829 to distribute through the Covid-19 Additional Relief Fund (CARF) to businesses affected by Covid but ineligible for previous support schemes and not able to adapt – such as in the manufacturing, food distribution, wholesale or supply chain sectors.

Applications closed on Sunday 14 August but the scheme has now been extended until September 4.

Councillor Robin Ashcroft, SLDC portfolio holder for Economy, Culture and Leisure, said: "We have had a good response to the South Lakeland Covid-19 Additional Relief Fund but there are eligible businesses who have not applied.

"For this reason, I would urge anybody operating a business which they think fits the criteria for support through this scheme to check on our website and apply."

Businesses can apply online and details about eligibility and a link to the application form can be found here.

Government guidance states that reductions should be made under the CARF scheme to assist those ratepayers who have been adversely affected by the pandemic and who were unable  to adequately adapt to that impact.

The CARF scheme will be open to all ratepayers who meet the following criteria:

  • Not eligible (or would be eligible) for the Expanded Retail Discount (covering Retail, Hospitality, and Leisure), the Nursery Discount or the Airport and Ground Operations Support Scheme (AGOSS);
  • Not a council (including parish and county councils);
  • Not entitled to either Small Business Rate Relief or Rural Rate Relief granted at 100 per cent;
  • Not entitled to mandatory relief (80 per cent) and discretionary (top up) of 20 per cent which is funded through business rates retention:
  • The hereditament is treated as occupied by the council:
  • The ratepayer confirms that they have been adversely affected by the pandemic and have been unable to adequately adapt to that impact;
  • The ratepayer is not subject to subsidy control.

SLDC cannot award relief to:

  • Businesses in receipt of, or eligible for, the Expanded Retail Discount and the Nursery Discount, for example: shops, restaurants, cafes, pubs, hotels, self-catering accommodation;
  • Businesses that do not have a charge to pay in the 2021/2022 financial year due to the receipt of other reliefs;
  • Businesses that are not in occupation in the 2021/2022 financial year;
  • Businesses who have already received the maximum amount of subsidy allowed;
  • Businesses that are in administration, insolvent or where a striking-off notice has been made.