COVID-19: advice and guidance

On 4 January 2021, the Government has imposed a national lockdown and we must stay at home to protect the NHS and save lives.

Find out what you can and can not do HERE.

FAQs for hospitality businesses

FINANCIAL SUPPORT

New lockdown grants to support businesses and protect jobs (5 January 2021)
Businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors are to receive a one-off grant worth up to £9,000, the Chancellor has announced.
Find out more HERE

Bristol City Council is working hard to ensure all businesses get the financial support they are entitled to during this challenging time. If you pay business rates and haven’t applied for a business support grant, please apply now. Visit the Bristol City Council website Covid-19 page HERE for all information. If there isn’t a grant that applies to your business, check the page regularly, it will be updated with any future grants when possible.

We would also highly recommend that you subscribe to the Bristol City Council business e-newsletters, which are a great resource for insights, ideas and support. Subscribe today.

If you have any queries or issues regarding restrictions or financial support, you are welcome to attend the free webinars hosted by Bristol City Council every third Wednesday of the month from 4pm to 5pm, where you will have a chance to talk to a Council Officer. More info HERE.

Other support

Furlough scheme extended to 30 April 2021 – HERE
Furlough scheme extended and further economic support (17 December 2020) – more info HERE
Business Rate Retail Discount – HERE
Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) – HERE
NHS Test and Trace Support Payment scheme (supporting low income workers whose earnings are affected by having to self-isolate) – HERE

Loans: Various loan schemes have been put in place to help businesses during the pandemic. Please check the following links to find out more and to apply if you are eligible to the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, the Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme, the Bounce Back Loan and the Future Fund.

Pay as You Grow: Businesses who took out a Bounce Back Loan to help with finance during the Coronavirus pandemic can extend the loans as part of a new scheme called Pay as You Grow. Businesses can pay loans back across a 10 year period, which will reduce the monthly repayments by almost half.

Temporary VAT cut: the temporary VAT cut – from 20% to 5% – for certain sectors like hospitality and tourism, it will remain until the end of March 2021.

Local Restrictions Support & Additional Support Grants

LRSG (Closed):
A grant of up to £1,500 per 14 day period for businesses that are registered for business rates and which have been required to close during Tier 3 restrictions.

Businesses that were forced to close during the November lockdown and are registered for business rates can still apply for a grant known as the ‘Local Restrictions Support Grant (Closed) Addendum’ on the Bristol City Council website. This grant covers the lockdown period between 5 November and 1 December 2020.
Businesses that are still legally required to close due to the current restrictions will also be eligible for an additional grant – the ‘Local Restrictions Support Grant (Closed)’ – that covers each fortnight they have to remain closed.
If you received a ‘Local Restrictions Support Grant (Closed) Addendum’, you will automatically receive a ‘Local Restrictions Support Grant (Closed)’ – businesses only need to apply once.
If you think you are eligible, apply today HERE.

LRSG (Closed) Addendum:
A grant of up to £3,000 for businesses that are registered for business rates and were required to close during the national lockdown from 5 November to 1 December 2020.

LRSG (Open):
The government will provide Bristol City Council with funding for businesses that are legally allowed to open, but are experiencing decreased demand. This is known as the ‘Local Restrictions Support Grant (Open)’. The Bristol City Council team is working hard to get this grant application process live, and will update us as soon as the application process is ready.

LIMIT THE SPREAD OF INFECTION

Advice from the NHS can be found HERE.
Official guidance on the NHS test and trace service for employers, businesses and workers is available HERE.

WORKING SAFELY

Businesses need to ensure a safe and well-structured environment for their staff and customers. Please see below to access the latest Covid-19 Secure Government guidance links, which work alongside current health and safety rules:

  • Guidance for people who work in or run restaurants offering takeaway or delivery servicesHERE
  • Guidance for maintaining records of staff, customers and visitors to support NHS Test and Trace HERE
  • To create a coronavirus NHS QR code for your business: www.gov.uk/create-coronavirus-qr-poster
  • All retail workers in England need to wear face coverings, or retailers face fines of up to £10,000. Guidance regarding face coverings – HERE

Risk assessment
Businesses need to carry out a risk assessment and place the COVID-19 Secure poster on display in their shop window or outside their store, visible to customers and staff.
If you need help with writing a COVID-19 Secure Risk Assessment document, click HERE for some examples.
This generic template, COVID-19 – Returning to the Workplace Risk Assessment, is also available to download.  Please remember to update it for your own business.

WELLBEING IN THE WORKPLACE

Businesses continue to face tough challenges and many people are struggling with the uncertainties brought about from the latest restrictions. There are many mental health support tools available to businesses and individuals. More info HERE.

The Thrive at Work programme, developed by the West of England Combined Authority (WECA), offer free e-learning courses for Managers. ‘Managing Mental Health at Work’ is designed for SMEs (with a maximum headcount of 250) to equip their managers with the confidence and skills to have supportive conversations with their staff about mental health and wellbeing, particularly in these challenging times. Developed in partnership with Mind, the leading mental health charity, the course is free to access (funded by WECA) for SMEs in the West of England.

LEARNING PORTAL – an opportunity to develop your skills for free

For a range of free high quality online courses, from social media to digital marketing and much more, please check the City Centre BID learning portal.

CRIME

Tips, links and useful contacts from the Police for your businesses during the current lockdown

Crime prevention advice for empty commercial premises

Covid Marshals – more info HERE

Good counter terrorism measures have benefits in deterring crime. The award winning ACT Awareness e-learning course (45 minutes) will equip your business with the information you will need. You can access the course HERE.