One off £5,000 Covid grants are available for Milton Keynes based businesses

Grants under Winter Retail Support Scheme need to be submitted before deadline

Covid grants for businesses across Milton Keynes are being made available - but applications need to be submitted before the 15 January deadline.

The Winter Retail Support Scheme is being funded by Additional Restrictions Grant funding provided by the Government and will support non-essential retail premises on six local high street areas and within the main shopping area in CMK. A one-off grant of up to £5,000 will be available.

The following thresholds apply for these businesses:

A number of businesses in CMK may qualify for the grants - but applications need to be in by January 15

> Businesses that are the ratepayer for a property with a rateable value of exactly £15,000 or under on 1 December 2021 will receive a payment of £1,500.

> Businesses that are the ratepayer for a property with a rateable value over £15,000 and less than £51,000 on 1 December 2021 will receive a payment of £2,500.

> Businesses that the ratepayer for a property with a rateable value of exactly £51,000 or over on 1 December 2021 will receive a payment of £5,000

> Businesses that are not a ratepayer as they occupy a shared space will receive a payment of £1,000.

Applications must be submitted through the council’s grant portal but anyone interested is advised to check the eligibility criteria below before applying.

Those requiring assistance with applications are asked to email [email protected] - applicants are asked not call the Business Rates team as they are unable to help with grant applications

Eligibility Criteria

The business must be trading from an address in one of the following streets on 1 December 2021:

Bletchley: Aylesbury Street, Queensway, The Concourse, Victoria Road, Watling Street

Central Milton Keynes: Acorn Walk, Crown Walk, Deer Walk Eagle Walk, Marlborough Gate

Midsummer Arcade: Midsummer Boulevard Midsummer Place, Silbury Arcade, Silbury Boulevard, Sunset Walk

Newport Pagnell: High Street, St John Street, Union Street

Olney: Fountain Court, High Street, High Street South, Market Place, Osborns Court, Rose Court

Stony Stratford: Church Street, Cofferidge Close, High Street, London Road (to no.6), Market Square, Swinfens Yard, Wolverton Road (to no.13)

Woburn Sands: High Street

Wolverton: Buckingham Street, Church Street (to no.120), Glyn Square, ,Radcliffe Street, Stratford Road (up to no.50),The Square.

The property must be shown in the rating list as a non-domestic property. Businesses that operate from residential addresses within the above areas will not be eligible for a grant.

The business falls within the definition of non-essential retail as defined in paragraph 28 and 30 of the government guidance for Restart grants issued in April 2021, copied below:

‘A non-essential retail business can be defined as a business that is used mainly or wholly for the purposes of retail sale or hire of goods or services by the public, where the primary purpose of products or services provided are not necessary to the health and well-being of the public.’

‘The definition of a non-essential retail business should exclude: food retailers, including food markets, supermarkets, convenience stores, corners shops, off licences, breweries, pharmacies, chemists, newsagents, animal rescue centres and boarding facilities, building merchants, petrol stations, vehicle repair and MOT services, bicycle shops, taxi and vehicle hire businesses, education providers including tutoring services, banks, building societies and other financial providers, post offices, funeral directors, laundrettes and dry cleaners, medical practices, veterinary surgeries and pet shops, agricultural supply shops, garden centres, storage and distribution facilities, wholesalers, employment agencies and businesses, office buildings, automatic car washes and mobility support shops.’

Businesses that fall predominantly within the hospitality, accommodation, leisure, personal care and gym business sector, as defined in the Restart Grant guidance, will not be eligible for the grant.

A summary of the definitions within the Annex C of the guidance is copied below:

Hospitality definition: a business whose main function is to provide a venue for the consumption and sale of food and drink

Leisure definition: a business that provides opportunities, experiences and facilities, in particular for culture, recreation, entertainment, celebratory events, days and nights out, betting and gaming

Accommodation definition: a business whose main lodging provision is used for holiday, travel and other purposes.

Gym & Sport definition: a commercial establishment where physical exercise or training is conducted on an individual basis or group basis, using exercise equipment or open floor space with or without instruction, or where individual and group sporting, athletic and physical activities are participated in competitively or recreationally.

Personal care definition: a business which provides a service, treatment or activity for the purposes of personal beauty, hair, grooming, body care and aesthetics, and wellbeing

Businesses that are in administration, insolvent or where a striking-off notice has been made, are not eligible for funding under this scheme.

Businesses that have already received grant payments that equal the maximum permitted subsidy allowances will not be eligible to receive funding.

Where a business meets all of the above criteria but is not the ratepayer for the property it trades from as it is a shared space within a larger property then a grant of up to £1,000 will be available. The grant will not be paid if the ratepayer of the property is eligible for the grant in their own right.

There is a fixed amount of funding available for this scheme, applications received after the funding has been exhausted will not be considered for payment under this scheme. The scheme will close to new applications on 15 January 2022 or when the funding is exhausted, whichever date is earlier.