Scottish Government announces top-up grants for hospitality

By James McAllister

- Last updated on GMT

Scottish Government announces top-up grants for hospitality

Related tags: Scotland, Government, Coronavirus, lockdown

Hospitality businesses in Scotland will receive top-up grants of up to £25,000, the Scottish Government's Finance Secretary Kate Forbes has announced.

The one-off grants will be available for hospitality, retail and leisure businesses across Scotland shuttered by level 4 restrictions, and be available in addition to the current monthly grants worth up to £3,000 available to closed businesses through the Strategic Framework Business Fund.

Smaller hospitality businesses with a rateable value of £51,000 or less will be entitled to a payment of £6,000; while larger hospitality businesses with a rateable value of £51,001 or more will receive £25,000.

The funding is substantially more generous than the one-off grant worth up to £9,000 pledged to hospitality businesses in England​ by the Treasury earlier this month.

Scotland's latest round of grants comes after the devolved government pledged a £104.3m package of support for tourism and hospitality​, including £19.2m in one-off grants, back in December. 

Much of the package is designed be targeted at licensed hospitality businesses that previously fell through the cracks, with £50.8m made available for businesses with a rateable value of more than £51,000 that have not received support from the Pivotal Enterprise Resilience Fund or Hotel Support Programme.

The majority of businesses eligible for the one-off grants will receive it as a top up combined with the next tranche of payment for the Strategic Framework Business Fund, due to go to businesses on 25 January.

Businesses that haven’t yet applied for either of these funds should submit an application as soon as possible through their local authority website, the Scottish Government advises.

“Since the start of the pandemic, Scottish Government support for business and the economy has reached almost £3bn - more than a third of our total Coronavirus (Covid-19) funding, demonstrating our commitment to provide as much help as we possibly can to our businesses," says Forbes.

“As promised, this additional support for hospitality, retail and leisure businesses will be available this month, in some cases doubling or tripling the amount of support we are providing. Applications are open now and payment will be made this month.

“Crucially this essential funding will also help to close the gaps in UK wide support for these impacted sectors and our one-off support for larger hospitality premises of £25,000 is considerably more generous than the £9,000 grant on offer in England.

“I’d encourage all eligible businesses to apply through their local authority if they have not done so already.

"Of course we are acutely aware that this support can never compensate for the full impact on business, but we must work within the resources that are available to us, and we continue to respond to the evolving economic challenges arising from the pandemic.”

Most of Scotland has been in full lockdown since the beginning of January, with the majority of hospitality businesses closed since Boxing Day (26 December) when Level 4 restrictions were imposed across all mainland regions.

However, island areas - including Orkney and Shetland - remain subject to Level 3 restrictions, meaning restaurants, cafes, pubs and bars can open indoors and outdoors for the consumption of food and non-alcoholic drinks, subject to a 6pm curfew.

Related topics: Business & Legislation

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