East Lothian Council has welcomed a new government fund to help the newly self-employed who may be experiencing hardship due to the Coronavirus crisis.


Applications for the fund, which offers grants of £2k to those who meet the criteria, are now open. More detail, plus the application form, is available on the council website


Councillor John McMillan, Council Spokesperson for Economic Development, said: “This is welcome news as many who have just recently become self-employed have fallen through the cracks and don’t qualify for other funds available. The council will continue to work in partnership with other organisations to provide as much advice and support as possible to our entire business community. It is vital that we retain as many of our fantastic local businesses as possible as they all add a huge amount of value not just to our economy but to the quality of life of our residents and communities.”


The fund is open for the current financial year and the deadline for applications is 31 March 2021. There are a number of criteria that applicants must meet, including:


  • They became self-employed on/after 6 April 2019 (did not submit a tax return including income from self-employment for 2018-19)
  • Over 50% of income is from self-employment
  • Trading profits below £50,000 in financial year 2019-20
  • Can provide evidence of active trading up to March 2020
  • Have lost business due to coronavirus and are experiencing personal financial hardship as a result
  • Ineligible for other COVID-19 related business support


More detail on the criteria, plus full details of other council and government business support is available on the council website 

Published: Thursday, 30th April 2020