Council paying out more than £1m a day in small business grants: Ryedale District Council has paid out more than £13.1m through the Government's Small Business Grant

07 Apr 2020

Council paying out more than £1m a day in small business grants

Seven million pounds and rising – that’s the amount of grant aid that Ryedale District Council has paid out to small businesses in the area, since applications opened on the government’s Small Business Grant scheme.

The Small Business Grant is part of the government’s package of support to help businesses during the COVID outbreak.  Through the scheme, businesses in receipt of small business rate relief, retail relief and rural rate relief can claim £10,000 in grant funding to help them to stay afloat during the lockdown period.

Since the scheme launched, Ryedale District Council has put a dedicated team onto administering the grants, as part of the Council’s strategy of prioritizing activities to support lives and livelihoods during the COVID crisis.

Councillor Keane Duncan, leader of Ryedale District Council, said:

“Our officers are working flat out to get government cash out as quickly as we can. We’ve sent out more than £6.86m so far, and expect that figure to rise to £7m by late Tuesday.  The team won’t stop until it is all out. We know how much of a difference this cash can make at this difficult time, and the council has received so many positive messages so far.  We know there are people still waiting, but the team are working hard to get the money to you.”

Gemma Bicknell, owner of Topiary Tree in Malton, said:

“I got the grant on the first day. Thank you to Ryedale District Council for acting so quickly. That £10,000 is a matter of life and death for us. I’m now able to pay my suppliers and my rent. Whatever is left we will use to reopen as we will need to stock up the shop again.

“We will re-open. It’s just when. Most of the shops are in the same boat. I hope the positive to come out of this is that people realise we have all these amazing little businesses on our doorstep. We will need support now more than ever.”

Phillip Spurr is Programme Director for Economic Development at the Council, and leads the business team.  He said:

“From the calls and emails we’ve received, we know how urgently our local businesses need this money.  People are resourceful, and they are doing everything they can to keep going in this challenging time, but there are bills to pay, and the Small Business Grant can be a real lifeline.

“We wrote out to two thousand eligible businesses to ask them to provide us with the details we need to make the grant payment – and the response was fantastic.  More than 1400 of those businesses have used the form on our website to give their information.  That’s meant we could work on getting money out really quickly.

“However there are still a few hundred who haven’t yet given us the details we need to make the grant payment.  To them our message is to go to our website as soon as possible and complete the form.  It is quick to fill in, and it could make a massive difference.”

Businesses that still need to provide their details can do so online at:  www.ryedale.gov.uk/business-support 

Notes to editors

Note to editors:

Update on figures:  this release was issued on the morning of 7 April.  Since then the figure has continued to rise and stands at £18.2m on 25 April 2020.