Time running out to apply for pandemic business support fund

Last Updated: 22 August 2022

08 August 2022

South Lakeland's business rates relief scheme for firms affected by the coronavirus pandemic and previously ineligible for support closes at the end of this week.

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.

Businesses can apply online and details about eligibility and a link to the application form can be found at: https://www.southlakeland.gov.uk/business-and-trade/business-rates/business-rates-relief-and-reduction/covid-19-additional-relief-fund-carf/

Applications close at 11.59pm on Sunday 14 August 2022.

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.

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 is still time for eligible businesses to apply.

"The effects of the pandemic on businesses are still being felt and this scheme has the potential to provide much-needed support to sectors which were previously ineligible for government support.

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

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