If your business has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic but you have not been eligible for any government support grants so far, you may be able to apply for a one-off discretionary grant of £2k.
East Lothian Council has been awarded a share of government funding to distribute to eligible businesses and self-employed people who have not so far qualified for payment from any other funds.
Full details and an application form are now available on the council website The fund will only be open for applications for six days initially (until 5pm on Monday 8th February) to allow applications to be assessed and processed in the most fair way – not just on a first-come, first-served basis.
Depending on the final level of funding available to the council, and the number of applications received up to 5pm on 8th February, we may announce a further window for applications to be submitted. The council had received funding of just over £427k but it was announced by the Scottish Government last week that the amount available across Scotland would be doubled. We are awaiting confirmation of the final amount East Lothian Council will receive.
Councillor John McMillan, East Lothian Council spokesperson for Economic Development, said: “If your business has experienced financial hardship as a direct result of COVID-19 and the restrictions imposed on trading, and you have not yet qualified for any other grant funding, you could be eligible to apply for a one-off discretionary grant. Full details and the application form are now available on our dedicated web page that contains details of other grants and loans that may be useful to businesses at this challenging time.”
Businesses and those who are self-employed that may be eligible for this discretionary support include:
- Anyone supplying goods or services to businesses that have been closed or restricted
- Anyone facing hardship as an indirect consequence of the current travel restrictions
- Any individual or company without business premises so ineligible for grants attached to the rates system
The following will not be eligible:
- Any business that has received a grant through the Strategic Framework Business Fund (Closure/Restriction Fund).
- Taxi, Private Hire and Coach Operators, Mobile Close Contact Services, Travel Agents, Tour Operators, Visitor Attractions, Wedding and Events venues and accommodation providers. Separate funding was announced for these types of businesses by the Scottish Government on 9th December 2020 and details are on our grant funding web page.
- Self-employed individuals who have already received an award through the HMRC Self Employed Income Support Scheme. Support for the self-employed continues to be available through the UK Government’s Self-employed Income Support Scheme and the Scottish Government has also announced a second round of funding through the Newly Self-employed Hardship Fund.