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Axbridge Chamber of Commerce have highlighted the Government’s support for businesses during the latest lockdown due to the Covid-19 crisis.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak has announced a one-off £9000 lockdown grant per property for businesses in retail, hospitality and leisure. This is to support businesses and protect jobs following the announcement of a third national lockdown by the prime minister.

It is expected this third national lockdown will last until March. How £9000 lockdown grant works: £4,000 for businesses with a rateable value of £15,000 or under; £6,000 for businesses with a rateable value between £15,000 and £51,000; £9,000 for businesses with a rateable value of over £51,000.

The Treasury has also announced a further £594m discretionary fund to support to support other businesses not eligible for the grants, which might be affected by the national lockdown.

In total, £4.6bn worth of new lockdown grants have been made available.And this comes on top of another £1.1bn of further discretionary funding for local authorities, local business shutdown grants worth up to £3,000 a month and extending the furlough scheme until the end of April.

The cash will be issued on a per-property basis to support businesses through the national lockdown, and is expected to benefit over 600,000 business properties, totalling £4bn in grants across Britain.

Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak (Photo by Yui Mok/PA Images via Getty Images)

Chancellor Rishi Sunak said: “The new strain of the virus presents us all with a huge challenge – and whilst the vaccine is being rolled out, we have needed to tighten restrictions further.

“Throughout the pandemic we’ve taken swift action to protect lives and livelihoods and today we’re announcing a further cash injection to support businesses and jobs until the spring.”

Responding to the announcement of the £9,000 lockdown grant, Institute of Directors director of policy Roger Barker said: “This new grant package is welcome and will go some way to reassuring the worst affected businesses.”

However, the IoD warned the chancellor to remain wary of a spring cliff edge in business support, as the furlough scheme and other support measures unwind.

Harry Mottram of the Axbridge Chamber of Commerce has pointed out that not all businesses qualify but it is worth investigating further. He said: “Many self-employed people do not qualify for the various grants and loans. Rather than take a high interest loan it is better to slash overheads, cut costs and get by on as little as possible before the economy opens up again. Beware of the banks and other lenders who may be offering loans that are at higher than normal rates.”

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