Just a few updates from BDC.
The demand appear to be levelling out but is still at much higher levels experienced by the Bassetlaw Foodbank prior to Covid.
PREPARING FOR RELAXING LOCKDOWN
Step one is about encouraging people who cannot work from home to go back to work in safe and ‘COVID-secure’ workplaces, as well as encouraging people to take more outdoor exercise.
Step two, at the earliest by June, will focus on the phased reopening of shops and getting the youngest children back into schools in stages; and
Step three, at the earliest by July, will see the reopening of the hospitality industry and other public places, provided they are safe and social distancing can be respected.
Steps 2 and 3 are dependent on the severity of the re-infection rate in the coming months.
We are establishing the first food market offering to offer stalls in both Worksop and Retford in line with Government guidance and social distancing advice. In Worksop three traders are operating at present, providing some choice for fish, fruit & veg and eggs. In Retford the situation is more varied at present with two butchers, plus stalls for fish, eggs, bakery and fruit & veg. Food retailers area able to trade, which is why there is a mix of butchers and bakers amongst the food stalls.
Trading hours are generally from 8:30am – 1:00pm and the stalls will be appropriately distanced. Risk assessments have been undertaken for the safe operation of the stalls along with safe systems of work. The plan for Retford from next week is for Thursdays and Saturdays and Worksop, Wednesdays and Fridays.
Following the first business grant tranches for businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors of £10,000 (RV’s less then £15,000) and £25,000 (RV’s less than £51,000) Ministers have launched another small business grant scheme for businesses who were not eligible for the Small Business Grant Fund or the Retail, Leisure and Hospitality Fund. These are for:
- Small businesses in shared offices or other flexible workspaces. Examples could include units in industrial parks, science parks and incubators which do not have their own business rates assessment
- Regular market traders who do not have their own business rates assessment
- Bed & Breakfasts which pay Council Tax instead of business rates; and
- Charity properties in receipt of charitable business rates relief which would otherwise have been eligible for Small Business Rates Relief or Rural Rate Relief
The latest guidance on the above scheme emphasises that the scheme is directed at small businesses with a rateable value (RV) below £51,000 and allows discretion for local authorities to develop their own schemes. It recognises that if local authorities adopt different schemes there may be issues across borders and encourages consistency across wider areas. Consequently, all Nottinghamshire authorities are working on a policy that includes common criteria for eligibility. In accordance with the Government’s guidance it is expected that the first discretionary grant payments will be received by eligible businesses by early June.
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