What is the coronavirus Restart Grant?
The Restart Grant launched on 1 April 2021 and provides a one-off payment to support businesses in the non-essential retail, hospitality, leisure, personal care and accommodation sectors as they reopen over the next few months, as restrictions in England ease.
If you’re eligible, you don’t have to pay the money back and you could receive between £6,000 and £18,000, depending on your type of business.
Since the scheme launched, over £2.7 million has already been paid out to over 374 businesses in Ipswich and the council have announced that they are continuing to work hard to process more applications as quickly as possible.
Am I eligible for the Restart Grant?
Your local authority will assess whether you’re eligible for the Restart Grant. But generally, you need to be a business in one of the above sectors, offering in-person services primarily and trading on 1 April 2021 (trading could mean for instance that you had staff on furlough, but were operating online, or were preparing to reopen).
Of course, there are some businesses that could fall under both the non-essential and another category, like hospitality. If you fall into this group, we suggest that you declare the category that makes up 50 percent or more of your overall activity, so that your local authority can then take ‘reasonable judgement’ when working out your eligibility and the level of grant you should receive.
Other eligibility criteria for the Restart Grant can be broken down by sector:
- non-essential – a business that provides retail services that aren’t necessary to the health and wellbeing of the public, and was likely to have had to stop or restrict those services during lockdown
- hospitality – a business that provides in-person food and drink to be consumed on the premises, whether that’s inside or outside
- leisure – a business that provides ‘opportunities, experiences and facilities’, particularly for culture, recreation, entertainment, celebratory events, and days and nights out
- accommodation – a business that provides accommodation for holiday, travel and other purposes
- gym and sports – a business that provides in-person sport and exercise facilities to the public
- personal care – a business that provides personal beauty, hair, grooming, body care and aesthetics, and wellbeing services or treatments to the public
Three subsidy allowances also cover this scheme, which means you can’t exceed your total permitted allowance. You can get:
How do I apply?
- up to £335,000 (subject to exchange rates) over any period of three years under the Small Amounts of Financial Assistance Allowance
- up to £1,600,000 under the Covid-19 Business Grant Allowance
- up to £9,000,000 under the Covid-19 Business Grant Special Allowance, if you’ve met the limits under the other two allowances and you meet special conditions
The Restart Grants are being paid out to eligible businesses by local authorities. In some situations this will be an automatic process, so you won’t need to do anything, but if you haven’t heard anything yet and think that your business could be eligible, visit your local authority’s website to find out more and make an application.
We've included links to some of the local authority websites below, so please feel free to click straight through:
If you think you’re eligible for the Restart Grant, it’s best to get in touch with your council sooner rather than later.