1. Discretionary Grants Fund: Oxford City Council has published details of the application process for its COVID-19 Discretionary Grants Fund. The documents found in the link below set out the eligibility criteria.
This grant scheme widens access to support to small businesses with fixed property-related costs who are struggling to survive due to the Coronavirus shutdown, and unable to access other grant funding. Due to the limited amount of funding available, it is possible more businesses will apply than available funds. Therefore, the Council will be issuing grants based on eligibility, the scale of financial losses and costs, and an assessment of economic, and social and environmental impact.
The eligibility criteria and the online application form are at: www.oxford.gov.uk/discretionarygrant
Please read the eligibility guidance carefully. If you believe you qualify, then please fill in the online application form.
2. New central Government business support measures
The Government has announced a number of new measures or adjustments to those already in place including:
• The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (furlough)
• The Self-Employment Income Support Scheme
There’s more detail on accessing these and all the national Government support that’s currently available for business via https://www.gov.uk/business-coronavirus-support-finder
Oxford City Council is working with partner organisations – including Oxfordshire County Council as the transport authority – on a range of measures to support businesses in the post-lockdown phase. We’ll be writing to you with details of those measures, which include outside tables & chairs, A-boards, waste collection and more, in the coming days.
In the meantime, can we remind you that the Government has published guidance for shops and similar businesses to ensure you are COVID-19 secure on re-opening. It’s at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19/shops-and-branches
4. Business support survey
Thank you to all those of who you who took the time to complete our latest business support survey. We’re analysing the responses on all the questions, but have published early findings from the section related to transport and movement proposals which you’ll find here: https://www.oxford.gov.uk/news/article/1442/oxford_businesses_support_measures_to_improve_social_distancing_for_pedestrians_and_cyclists
5. Talk of the Town
Our next Talk of the Town forum for city centre businesses will take place by Zoom from 1.30pm on Thursday 25th of June. If you would like to attend, please email email@example.com and we will send you the meeting details.